If you're dealing with an autoimmune disorder like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or Crohn's or Hashimoto disease, you may be tired of trying a cocktail of medications that seem to have more negative side effects than your autoimmune disorder itself. However, going without treatment can bring its own problems. Do you have any effective treatment options that don't require depressing your immune system or replacing your body's natural hormones? Read on for several ways to help manage the symptoms of your autoimmune disorder without resorting to further medication.
The Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diet
Although inflammation-reducing foods like green, leafy vegetables and high-fat fish can be healthy for everyone, those dealing with an autoimmune disorder can gain great benefits from these foods. By reducing inflammation in the joints and organs, these foods can help your body gain some reprieve from the onslaught by your immune system.
Most anti-inflammatory diets will restrict food and drink like hot peppers, alcohol, caffeine, sugars, white bread, and other substances known to produce an immune response in vulnerable individuals. However, the AIP diet goes even further and eliminates nearly all substances to which an immunologically-sensitive person could potentially react. Under this diet, you'll be primarily limited to grass-fed or organic meat, coconut products, vegetables, and some fruit. You'll need to avoid foods like potatoes, processed meat, and seed-based spices. By sticking to the AIP diet for a few weeks, you may notice a significant difference in the way you feel and function.
If you haven't already visited an immunologist to help you handle the symptoms of your autoimmune disorder, there's no better time than the present. Although many immunologists deal primarily in allergies, some specialize in the management and treatment of autoimmune disorders through more natural methods, rather than medication.
An immunologist helps evaluate the bacteria and immune response your body produces in order to devise ways to help stem this response and restore your immune system back to that of a "normal" person functioning without allergies or autoimmune issues. He or she will then make specific recommendations tailored to your situation -- anything from certain foods to avoid (or consume) to the slow introduction of potential allergens to help train your immune system to respond in a healthier manner. Although an immunologist may not be able to cure your autoimmune disorder or eliminate all symptoms, he or she should be able to work with you to find some relief. See Asthma and Allergy Clinic or another immunologist near you to find out more.