Part I: 8 Truths About Autoimmunity
As a physician and former autoimmune patient, I know all too well how much misinformation there is surrounding autoimmune disease. I was trained in conventional medicine and dealt with a very broken system during my own autoimmune thyroid disease. Fortunately, I went on to discover the functional medicine approach to reversing my condition, and have used those same principals to help thousands of my patients reverse their own autoimmune disease.
In fact, it was my own incredibly difficult journey with autoimmune disease that inspired my life’s mission to not let conventional medicine fail you too. As part of that mission, I’m so excited to kick off a special series on my blog where I’ll cover eight important truths you need to know about autoimmunity.
This information is truly life-changing, and I really wish I would have known about it when I was struggling with my Graves’ disease. Instead, I experienced panic attacks, dramatic weight loss, tremors, a racing heart, and a slew of other frightening symptoms. So if you’re dealing with these same symptoms, or those of Hashimoto’s or another autoimmune condition such as fatigue, brain fog, weight gain, joint pain, or muscle weakness – this series is for you. I don’t want YOU to feel the hopelessness and frustration that I experienced while going through my autoimmune journey. It is my hope that sharing these eight important truths will show you that there IS another way, and empower you to take your health into your own hands.
So let’s dig in!
Truth #1. Autoimmune disorders CAN be reversed.
If you’re like most autoimmune patients, this is what you’re likely to hear when you sit down at the doctor’s office (I know it’s what I was told, and has been the experience of most of my patients until they come to my office too):
“I’m so sorry. You have an autoimmune disease. Once the genes that produce this condition have been turned on, they can’t be turned off. We can’t cure the disease. The only thing we can do now is to manage your symptoms- and the only way to do that is with drugs.”
Like many aspects of conventional medicine, there is some truth to those remarks. But they are also very much misguided.
Yes, there’s a genetic component to autoimmune disorders. But, as we have learned from the brand new field of epigenetics, genetic expression can be modified. For you to develop an autoimmune disease, something in your environment, diet, or personal circumstances has to turn on the group of your genes that causes autoimmune disorders. Once those genes are turned on, you CAN turn them off, or at least turn them down.
Through optimizing your diet, healing your gut, reducing your toxic burden, healing infections, and relieving your stress, you can instruct your problematic genes to turn off again, thereby restoring your immune system to health.
I’ve seen it in myself and in the thousands of patients I have treated. And, I’ve heard it from hundreds of thousands of people around the world who have implemented The Myers Way® and followed the plans in my books, The Autoimmune Solution and The Thyroid Connection.
Truth #2. You can regain an EXCELLENT quality of life after an autoimmune diagnosis.
“My doctor said that, over time, I could expect to get weaker and weaker.”
“I’ve had to tell my son not to bring the grandkids over — I can’t take a chance on getting sick.”
“Sometimes the pain gets so bad, I can’t even take a walk with my husband.”
These are the kinds of problems that someone with an autoimmune disease can frequently expect — but they are by no means inevitable. Although conventional medicine would counsel you to accept a poor quality of life as the likely outcome of your condition, I’m here to tell you that it is not at all inevitable. If you take the steps to remove the environmental causes of your autoimmunity and restore your immune system’s balance, you CAN expect to be symptom-free, pain-free, and full of vitality.
Getting your autoimmune illness under control takes some people longer than others, and everyone’s journey is different. But ultimately, if you commit to the lifestyle changes that are proven to reverse your condition, you can look forward to an excellent quality of life.