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  • Writer's picturedrnicolend

5 Common Myths of Autoimmune Diseases

Updated: May 6, 2023

These myths of autoimmune diseases have been floating around, but I'm here to debunk them for you and get you back on the healing track.

Myth #1: One treatment works for everyone with an autoimmune disease

You are unique and the cause of your autoimmune disease is unique, so the treatment needs to reflect that. There is no specific protocol. Healing doesn't work that way. For example, one protocol for Hashimoto's doesn't work for everyone with Hashimoto's, just like one medication for one disease doesn't work for everyone, Medications are necessary & needed for someone with severe or uncontrolled autoimmune diseases, BUT it does not address the root of this disease.

There are foundational root causes that all autoimmune diseases have in common that need to be addressed. Once this foundation is set, then you can take your healing even deeper and find more unique root triggers for you.

Myth #2 : If someone in your family has an autoimmune disease, then you will get that same disease.

Nope. Just because someone in your immediate family has an autoimmune disease doesn't mean you will get the same autoimmune disease. It does, however, put you at a higher risk for developing any autoimmune disease. Again, doesn't mean you will ever develop an autoimmune disease in your life. It depends on other factors like your current health, lifestyle, and environmental factors.

Myth #3: Diet, lifestyle, or environment has nothing to do with your autoimmune disease.

There are numerous studies showing how factors like foods, toxins, sedentary lifestyle, & air pollution all contribute to the increased risk of developing an autoimmune disease or making your autoimmune symptoms worse.

For example, studies have shown that gluten (specifically gliadin- a protein in gluten) looks similar to your thyroid and brain tissue. So whenever you eat gluten AND you have a thyroid autoimmune disease like Hashimoto's or Graves', then it activates your immune system to create antibodies against gluten. Since gluten also looks similar to your thyroid and brain, these gluten antibodies could mistakenly attack them too! So, your body’s response every time you eat gluten is to make antibodies to gluten and these antibodies can then mistakenly attack your thyroid or brain. This is called molecular mimicry. It not only occurs with foods, but pathogens & toxins too.

Myth #4: Everyone with the same autoimmune disease has the same symptoms

Many people with autoimmune disease have similar symptoms, but they are not always the same. Someone with Hashimoto's hypothyroidism may have no symptoms, while someone else has chronic constipation, low energy, weight gain, hair thinning, and a goiter. So don't compare yourself to anyone else! Your body will express a combination of symptoms that is unique to you. Once you are familiar with how your body expresses symptoms, then you will know when you are getting off track with your health. This puts you back in control of your health because you will know what is causing your symptoms & you will know what happened and/or what needs to be corrected. Your symptoms are no longer are not appearing out of thin air or for no reason. You know exactly what's going on & what to do about it.

Myth #5: This autoimmune disease just happened overnight.

Usually, it takes months to years to develop an autoimmune disease and autoantibodies may appear YEARS before any symptoms appear. Rheumatoid arthritis antibodies can appear up to 14 years before the first symptoms appear! Yes, it's true. Also another good reason to get tested for antibodies early especially if you have a family history.

Bonus Myth #6: There is a cure for autoimmune diseases.

Unfortunately, currently, there is no cure for autoimmune disses. By "cure", I mean that the autoimmune disease is completely gone and goes away forever. You may experience remission where symptoms will disappear for a period of time, but autoimmune diseases never completely go away. They can "flare up" and reactivate, if your immune system is triggered again.

Once you figure out, however, which triggers create symptoms and what kind of symptoms it causes for you, it empowers you because now you know what is going on and what to do about it!

You never have to feel hopeless, overwhelmed, or lost again.

There are four main areas of health that need to be addressed in order to build a solid foundation for you to begin healing in all autoimmune diseases. Depending on your condition, you may need more help in one area versus another. Like mentioned above, your autoimmune disease is unique to you and so the treatment will reflect what is needed for you. This is how I work with my 1:1 clients.

Want to know which areas are affecting you? Click HERE to sign up for a free discovery call to find out!

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