Celiac Disease, Crohn's, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Graves, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Ulcerative Colitis, Scleroderma, Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Sjogren’s Syndrome, Psoriasis, Meniere's disease or any other of the more than 80 possible autoimmune conditions?
Chronic Fatigue, Sore Achy Joints, Constant Muscle Tenderness, Headaches or Migraines, Swelling, Depression or Lack of Motivation, Brain Fog, or Forgetfulness to name a few.
In other words, more people have autoimmune disease than cancer and heart disease combined! We have seen that there are significant dietary, lifestyle, and environmental factors driving this dramatic increase.
Keep in mind, these are just the diagnosed cases. Many people are feeling terrible and have no idea that they are suffering because underlying, non-diagnosed autoimmune reactivity is wreaking havoc on their body.
It is important to understand that prior to having a full blown autoimmune disease, most people have what is commonly called “silent” autoimmunity. In this first stage, the immune system is attacking body tissue, but does not result in changes or symptoms that are significant enough for a diagnosis or conventional treatment. People with silent autoimmunity then develop autoimmune reactivity, changes and/or symptoms that are significant enough to be acknowledged by the conventional medical community, but that still do not result in positive autoimmune lab panels.
This can go on for many years before getting a positive autoimmune test result and diagnosis of a full blown autoimmune disease. Unfortunately for those suffering with these conditions, the standard health care model today waits for the autoimmunity to significantly destroy the tissue (Full Blown Autoimmune Disease) before making the diagnosis and beginning treatment. Then, the first line of therapy for autoimmunity is typically heavy corticosteroids and immuno-suppressive drugs, treatments that carry heavy side effects.
It is very important to understand that there are comprehensive, drug free, protocols that can dramatically help reduce your autoimmunity and that there are labs that can determine if your immune system has become hyperactive well before a full blown autoimmune disease sets in.
If these tests are completed and therapies are started before a person develops full blown autoimmunity, they will likely prevent the disease from fully expressing itself. These protocols are also highly successful in helping a person who already has an autoimmune disease dramatically improve the quality of their life and get on the road to wellness.
Again, our Functional Medicine and Preventative Health Programs are drug-free! If you have a diagnosed autoimmune disease and are already undergoing conventional treatments, it is important to understand that these programs of care can be used in combination in order to calm the hyperactive immune system down to the point of not needing the medications any longer.
1. The attack against self tissue “turns on” due to many possible factors like diet, lifestyle, environment, etc. To improve these conditions, the same factors must be addressed and “turned off.” This is just not done in conventional healthcare.
2. Medications are often given that decrease the immune system’s attack against your own tissue. This is a short-term option at best. These drugs will suppress your entire immune system, leaving you susceptible to other diseases and infections. In addition, this approach does not address “why” the immune system is attacking itself. This understanding is critical.
3. Not addressing the digestive tract, which is a HUGE contributor to your autoimmune condition, is also a very common mistake. The digestive tract is responsible for 70% of your immune barrier. The research clearly shows this is an area that absolutely must be addressed properly.
4. Not addressing hidden infections. Many autoimmune conditions were triggered by some sort of infection(s), or at the very least this was a contributing factor. It is critical to determine if active infections are present, as well as to properly address chronic infections. This is commonly missed and is another critical mistake.
5. The understanding that autoimmune conditions cannot be "cured", according to science, but can be absolutely controlled. This is not achieved by medications, but by safely and effectively addressing the root causes of the immune system attack in the first place. These include the NF-KB signaling loop, digestive health/food sensitivity/leaky gut, liver malfunction, T cell and B cell balancing, infection, and blood glucose imbalances, to name a few. This statement is grossly misunderstood and leads to countless years of unnecessary suffering.
If you feel you have an autoimmune issue and want to start on the path to true health & wellness today, use the contact form below or call us at 217-249-4808 today to discuss your case with one of our team members!
After you submit our New Patient intake form, Dr. Duquette will call you to schedule a 45-minute consultation to review your case in detail. If you are a candidate for one of our functional medicine programs, he will then go over our intake process and scheduling options.
If you have any questions or need help with your Intake form, feel free to call us at (217) 249-4808.