Have you been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease? In this episode of Wellness Radio, we discuss the causes and symptoms of Crohn’s, arthritis, and other autoimmune diseases. We also discuss how to begin reversing these diseases in an effort to get rid of them forever.
As this article is a summary of what was discussed, here are the timestamps where you can find more details on the various topics:
12:15 Common Causes of Autoimmune Conditions
17:17 How a Child Immunization Schedule Can Cause Autoimmune Disease
25:09 The Effects of Antibiotics Use in Children
30:17 How to Begin to Heal Autoimmune Diseases
35:51 Focus on Healing the Gut
43:55 The Role of Probiotics
The first step of healing from any disease, but especially an autoimmune disease, is acknowledging that you are being affected by this disease, but you are not this disease. Don’t get stuck to a label. You are not lupus. You are not arthritis. You are a person with an amazing body completely capable of healing itself from any and all diseases. Your journey to health starts with getting to the root cause of your diagnosis.
We start the episode with the story of Chelsea, a former employee of his, that was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease and Lupus. She had some of her bowels removed and was placed on a large amount of medication. She’d also been told that if there was another major flareup, her colon would be removed, leaving her with a colostomy bag to deal with.
In her initial interview for employment with us, Dr. Rebecca Warren told Chelsea she could help her with her health issues, which probably annoyed her to some extent, since she had been to prestigious institutions like the Mayo Clinic and Vanderbilt Hospital for treatment. These places told her there was nothing she could do about her issue, she just had an overactive immune system.
She began working with us and agreed to try our suggestions. We took her off gluten and cow’s milk dairy immediately and began to help her heal her gut and change her lifestyle. We started adjusting her, which is a major part of healing the immune system, and even started to retrain her immune system altogether.
Over the course of a year, she was able to come off all 30+ pills she took daily and saw a regression of all symptoms of her autoimmune diseases. She’s now married with a healthy baby, which she thought wasn’t in the cards for her. This wasn’t because of any magic or medicine, but simply getting down to the root cause of her autoimmune diseases, healing her gut, and eliminating triggers from her lifestyle.
This is always the beginning point of healing autoimmune diseases. Did you know that Hashimoto and Rheumatoid arthritis can be caused by an overgrowth of harmful bacteria in the gut? Treating symptoms of these diseases will not get rid of the bacteria and so you’ll be on medication for life as long as you continue to treat symptoms instead of eliminate the root cause.
All autoimmune conditions start with something going awry in your gut. At our clinic, I like to be very specific about gut health tests to be able to see the exact environment of the gut of each patient so I can address exactly what is happening.
A recent patient of mine who dealt with psoriatic arthritis for 20+ years and always had skin issues on his elbows and other places on his body saw great improvements with lifestyle changes. He started eating a more anti-inflammatory diet which leaned towards a paleo, ketogenic diet which had him feeling great and dropping weight, but still experiencing some skin and arthritic conditions.
At this point, I said we need to look harder for the root cause of his condition by doing a stool test to see what his gut environment is like. The test revealed that he had an overgrowth of histamine-producing bacteria in his gut. Histamine reaction can show up on the skin as redness, damaged skin, and cracking.
The test also revealed that his immune function was extremely low. This is no doubt because his immune function was focused on one thing and that was attacking the skin. Three weeks after this test and resulting protocols to heal the gut, his wife said this is the best his skin has ever looked. This is all because we got down to the root cause of the condition and supported his body’s function of healing itself.
This is controversial simply because most of us are uninformed that the rigorous child immunization schedule we uphold in America is causing autoimmune diseases in our children. When you artificially stimulate the immune system with childhood immunizations, they are designed to skip the cell-mediated part of the immune system.
This is the part of the immune system that deals with uncomfortable symptoms like snot, mucus, and fevers. These symptoms are uncomfortable and inconvenient but they aren’t dangerous. Even a fever isn’t dangerous. Your temperature-regulating hypothalamus will not allow your fever to cause damage to your body, meaning your fever will actually help rid the body of harmful bacteria.
Studies reveal that if a child does not prime their immune system within the first year of life, it can lead to childhood cancer. Think about it. Leukemia is a developed world issue. This type of cancer isn’t common in third world countries where children are allowed to prime their immune system early on.
The book Vaccines, Autoimmunity, and the Changing Nature of Childhood Illness by Dr. Thomas Cowan is excellent reading on this topic if you’d like to research more.
Ear infections are a common example of a child being placed on antibiotics unnecessarily. Studies reveal that there is no improvement nor is there a decrease in the days an ear infection will run its course when a child is given antibiotics. The research actually shows ear infections coming back more often when antibiotics have been prescribed and are taken.
Adults who have autoimmune diseases may not attribute them to antibiotic use because they may not have taken these in their recent years. However, frequent antibiotic use as a child can show up years later as autoimmune diseases since these conditions start from a disruption in the gut, which can be caused by antibiotics.
Always start with the gut. Get a specific stool test done so you can have a real look at what’s going on inside your gut that’s affecting your body negatively.
You can start to address the gut at home before the test is done by changing your diet to be highly anti-inflammatory. Cut out gluten, cow’s milk dairy, corn, soy, and bad seed oils from your diet. This includes canola oil, even if organic. These oils are rancid and will create inflammation in the body.
Eat a diet high in wild-caught seafood, grass-fed protein, healthy fats from avocado, olive oil, and MCT oil. Pay attention to balancing out your omega 6:3 ratio to help heal skin issues. This doesn’t mean using fish oil, however, as this will throw your body out of balance in the other direction. What’s suggested is consuming oils that are more geared towards balancing out this ratio; hemp seed oil, flaxseed oil, raw cold-pressed sunflower seed oil, or black cumin seed oil are all healthy options.
Pure Form Omega is a good brand of supplement to consume if you want to immediately address your omega balance in the body. This balance is so important for keeping inflammation at bay.
You’ll also want to eat lots of nutrient-dense vegetables in your diet. I also like to recommend cooking your vegetables to rid them of any plant toxins when dealing with autoimmune diseases.
Once you’ve changed your diet, it’s time to start addressing the gut specifically. Some recommendations are to start consuming supplements with L glutamine, aloe vera, amino acids, collagen powder or bone broth, marshmallow root, turmeric, folic acid, colostrum, zinc, and choline just to name a few. These are all essential to cultivating a healthy gut environment.
Curcumin is excellent to start to calm the inflammation in the gut. Take this without any black pepper extract included since this is shown to cause damage to the lining of the gut. For a more absorbable type of curcumin, a liposomal option is recommended. Des Bio is a great brand of this type of curcumin
Enzymes are also great at reducing inflammation in the gut.
Probiotics are a tool that people like to use to address gut issues, however I caution against doing so blindly. This is because if you’re unaware of exactly what’s going on inside the gut, throwing probiotics in the mix can actually make the problem worse.
If you’ve been taking the same probiotics for 3-6 months, this can also cause an issue since you’re really getting a monoculture of bacteria instead of the diversity that is preferred.
DIf I were to reinoculate my gut, I would use a rotation of different types of megaspore biotics to help me with this.
Then, I would focus on priming and re-educating or retraining the immune system. You can utilize low-dose naltrexone for this purpose as it can be very effective for autoimmune conditions. EGCG and medicinal mushrooms such as shitake and maitake mushrooms are also valuable for this purpose. Earmark a year for this process to completely retrain your immune system, diligently taking your gut protocol supplements according to your health advisor’s schedule.