What is an autoimmune disease?
Autoimmune disease affects the skin or attacks your body, internal organs, or your systems, mistaking it for foreign cells. If you’re wondering if you have an autoimmune disease, often, it can be hard to pinpoint if you have one — but one of the most telling symptoms often is autoimmune rashes of some sort.
There are over 80 autoimmune diseases and these diseases affect about twice as many women as men. Some of the symptoms can be attributed to other issues, but together, they point to the body attacking itself. Here are some questions to ask if you are concerned about the possibility of autoimmune issues. Do you —
- Often feel overly tired or fatigued?
- Have achy muscles or joints that hurt?
- Experience unexplained redness or swelling?
- Have trouble concentrating?
- Struggle with skin rashes?
- Have digestive issues that plague you constantly?
- Experience hair loss?
Your symptoms may come and go (flare-up vs. remission) or they may be paired with other things, depending on your disease (like extreme thirst with diabetes). If you have a combination of these issues, begin by scheduling a visit with your healthcare professional or seek out help from a holistic doctor. You may be able to do blood tests, but you may also find that it takes a while to understand your disease. Once you have a name for it, you will begin to see a specialist regularly to help manage the symptoms.
Common Autoimmune Diseases
Some of the most common autoimmune disorders are Diabetes Type 1, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Multiple Sclerosis, Psoriasis, Celiac Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Graves’ Disease, and more. Rosacea is one of the autoimmune conditions that is often connected to another, like Celiac and Type 1 Diabetes.
While some of these diseases need special medications or treatments, there are some natural remedies and diets that can help you feel better and keep your symptoms at bay.
Lifestyle Changes to Help Minimize Autoimmune Issues
If you’re wanting to avoid pills and try a more natural approach, there are a few functional medicine recommendations that you can try. Now, some autoimmune diseases require regular medicine, like diabetes. But finding balance between your environment and your body is possible — and it can change how your gastrointestinal, immune, and endocrine systems all work together.
Typically, you are trying to reduce inflammation by removing the “triggers” that set off your symptoms. These are some of the first steps to getting your body back on track —
- Cut out sugar from your diet, including many processed carbs like flours, because they cause inflammation throughout the body. You can opt to try an autoimmune diet, which goes a few steps further by cutting processed vegetable oils, eggs, nightshades, alcohol and coffee, and nuts and seeds.
- Focus on the right kinds of fats. You can choose Omega-3 rich foods, like cold-water fish, chia, flax, and hemp seeds, and walnuts. When you use these fats instead of vegetable or olive oils, you’ll find your body works better.
Test your reactions to foods or do sensitivity testing. While cutting sugars, carbs, gluten, or more, take a couple of weeks to let your body detox and adjust to the new diet. Once you feel a difference, try to add one food back in at a time. Journal about how you feel and take the time to do this with each food that may be a trigger. If you have a hard time with this approach, you can take food sensitivity testing.
- Take supplements. Try to get as much of your nutrients from whole foods, but if you’re still struggling, work with your functional doctor to see if omega-3, Vitamins C and D, Zinc, Magnesium, and more could be helpful for you.
- Exercise as much as practicable for you. While it may seem difficult at times, moving your body for 30 minutes 5 times a week can help you overcome some of your symptoms.
- Minimize your stressors. Through yoga, breathing well throughout the day, massage, acupuncture, and more, you can help lower your stress, which lowers the cortisol throughout your body.
- Check to see if heavy metals have impacted your health. High levels of mercury and aluminum can impact how you feel. Be sure to check your levels and get rid of whatever is causing them.
- Get tested. Medical professionals can look for hidden infections, celiac disease, and food allergies that can trigger unwanted responses.
- Use clean ingredients. Check your products from your kitchen pans to your body products. The chemicals that the US allows into our homes can cause some inflammation and other symptoms. Research product options on EWG.com and MADESAFE.org to get the best information.
How Clean Skincare Can Help Your Autoimmune Skin Issues and More!
Often changes in your skin are among the first indications that something isn’t right. At Freegirl Skincare, we’re passionate about helping people live better lives through the most natural approaches. Keeping chemicals out of our personal care items is just as important as what we are putting in our bodies through foods. Clean skincare and other clean products (free from chemicals), can change your life and help you feel better! Using our products can take you one step closer to getting rid of the chemicals that can be feeding your autoimmune issues or autoimmune rashes.