With an autoimmune disease, which you’re often told it’s going to be lifelong, many people are going to be on medications for the rest of their life. There’s nothing they can do for it, but we found and we work with patients all the time to get into remission with autoimmunity.
We wanted to get the information out there, that’s why we wrote the book, The Lupus Solution, and hosted the Lupus and Autoimmunity Summit. We want to just get the information and the hope out to people that remission with autoimmunity is not only possible, but people can start doing that today. Here are some things to consider when you have an autoimmune disease.
When you’re talking about autoimmune diseases, fasting in an option for you. Fasting is naturally anti-inflammatory, but it also can help reset the immune system. It basically forces your body into “clean house” mode, where you get rid of old, damaged or weak cells. And with the immune system, it forces your immune system to recycle all the old, damaged white blood cells and then return. You actually start to produce and regenerate new, healthier white blood cells and immune cells. Fasting can be effective in as little as three days, you can get a good reset of your immune system.
Stress is a big driver of autoimmune diseases, we find that people are so stressed out on a daily basis. A lot of times, they don’t even realize that they’re stressed out, or that there’s other forms of stress in their bodies. It’s not always mental, emotional stress. It might be the physical, chemical stresses that they’re encountering. Whether it’s like hormonal issues, insulin surges, microbiome problems, nutrient deficiencies, Even here in sunny California, people are deficient in vitamin D all the time.
Cortisol is a huge component of stress. We find that most people with autoimmune disease have problems with their adrenal glands to some degree. One of the biggest things that we work on with people in the lifestyle realm, is working on stress management. This includes identifying where their stressors are coming from, helping them kind of get some good habits in their day, whether it’s exercise or meditation or breathing, or journaling, to help them be able to handle and get through stress easier.
It doesn’t have that longer lasting, negative impact, because just like inflammation, acute stress is helpful, chronic stress is not. We see that that’s a big perpetuator of the autoimmune process.
Nutrient and Mineral Balance
There’s a lot of adaptogenic herbs that help regulate stress. One of the most common that people know about is ashwagandha, a lot of people use that. Even B vitamins are important too for adrenal function. Adaptogens help keep cortisol more consistent, but there’s also some more things like licorice that can be more stimulating for cortisol.
Magnesium is a good modulator with cortisol. This can help regulate your sleep cycle, especially if you’ve chosen to fast. AdrenaCalmis a topical blend of different herbs that also help regulate sleep. Even things such as passionflower and lemon balm are really calming and soothing. Using these before bed can help you both fall and stay asleep.
Not only is autoimmunity preventable, but it’s also reversible.
You can get an autoimmune disease into a remission state. So you can always have the chances of it flaring up later, but our goal is to keep it where it’s non active, and it’s not creating complications or destruction.
You need to continue moving forward to not only support your immune system, but just to support more optimal health in your body. It makes it so that you’re not only fixing the problem and getting rid of their symptoms, but then it’s more of a lifelong, healthier way to maintain these complications too.
If you are avoiding flare ups and complications, and you’re also avoiding another autoimmune disease. When you have one autoimmune disease, the chance of developing another one is much higher.
Educating autoimmune patients is a big part of what we do. We are so glad we can provide the tools and knowledge to keep people going.
Dr. Tiffany Caplan & Dr. Brent Caplan
PS: Have fun exploring the creative and flavorful recipes in Dr. Caplan’s cookbook “Friendly Recipes to Calm the Fires of Inflammation.” These delicious recipes are great support for lowering inflammation due to lupus or other autoimmune disease symptoms.