Is your lifestyle causing an autoimmune disease?

I know first-hand how bothersome dealing with an autoimmune disease can be on a day-to-day basis. I’ve had chronic asthma since as far back as I can remember. Examples of these diseases are:

asthma

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  • allergic asthma
  • alopecia
  • anemia
  • arthritis
  • autoimmune hepatitis
  • type 1 diabetes
  • Guillain-Barré syndrome
  • multiple sclerosis
  • polymyositis
  • psoriasis
  • scleroderma/systemic sclerosis
  • systemic lupus erythematosus
  • thyroiditis
  • vitiligo

As a child, I was hospitalized numerous times, and carried my inhaler everywhere I went. By 16 years old I was taking 7 prescription medications a day. Fatigue, shortness of breath, fever, chest aches, and hives are all symptoms I endured. I couldn’t have a pet, couldn’t go camping, couldn’t play outside in the cold, couldn’t visit certain friends’ houses, couldn’t eat certain foods, couldn’t use certain detergents…I basically lived in a plastic bubble. Once, I even contracted Pneumonia while trick-or-treating.

At 17 I joined the track team, determined to overcome what I’d been dealing with my entire life. Running track taught me how to internally regulate my breathing. This was essential because my asthma attacks were mostly anxiety driven.

At 19, in addition to chronic asthma, I was diagnosed with Raynaud’s, a disorder associated with autoimmune diseases. Raynaud’s causes decreased blood flow to the extremities and vascular spasms that occur in response to cold exposure, stress, or emotional upset. I was basically screwed if I didn’t get my health in check.

Around 50 million Americans are affected by autoimmune diseases that have “no specific cause” and “no cure.” However, autoimmune disorders are likely caused by each of us destroying our body’s natural ability to protect itself. What we’re putting into our body must nourish us and help our cells recover faster than they’re damaged. If everything we’re eating has neurotoxins, but no enzymes or antioxidants, antigens will persevere while the healthy cells die off. Antigens are things like bacteria, toxins, viruses, and cancer cells.  Your body produces antibodies that kill antigens, except when your immune system cannot distinguish between the healthy cells and the antigens.

A theory behind the cause of autoimmune diseases is that the immune system becomes confused do to epigenetic influence. To put it simply, experiences/environmental exposures can change how your DNA works without changing the DNA itself. Your lifestyle and habits now can affect what is passed down to your offspring.

One of my favorite YouTube guru’s calls disease, the DIS-ease of the mind, body, and spirit. This would imply that surface level diseases, ones that are triggered rather than innate, likely have surface level solutions. Thus, making minor changes to your diet and lifestyle may help you to overcome any autoimmune disease.

Though there are still no accepted causes or cures for autoimmune diseases, The Imaginary Chef Diet is a good place to start. It combines aspects of veganism, The 4-Hour Body Diet, and the paleo diet, and has been my personal salvation. By following the diet, I was able to rid my body of prescription medication, and no longer suffer from chronic asthma. As a bonus my vision has drastically improved, and I developed the body I’ve always dreamt of (with minimal exercise).

You can learn about my personal diet, The Imaginary Chef Diet here.