I am so excited about today's presentations! You and I each know someone or perhaps ourselves who could benefit from the information presented in at least one of these lectures. I'll be watching all four, so you can definitely schedule an appointment with me to see if any of the ideas in these presentations could benefit you. If you decide to watch them today, click here--they're free for 24 hours. If you want to watch them later, click here--you'll get all 30 lectures from the entire summit. Don't forget that if you decide to implement any of the ideas from these lectures, be sure to talk to your doctor first, whether that's me or someone else. Cheers to your health!
Despite the fact that an estimated 50 million Americans suffer from some sort of autoimmune disease, these diseases can be tricky to diagnose. Autoimmunity occurs when the individual's body fails to recognize its own cells and begins to attack itself or alter its tissues. Autoimmune diseases are the result of autoimmunity, and the specific tissues involved determines which autoimmune disease the patient has. Some of the more common diseases in this category include lupus, multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, and Type I Diabetes, but an extensive list can be found here and in Dr. Sarah Ballantyne's The Paleo Approach: Reverse Autoimmune Disease and Heal Your Body, which lists the more than 100 confirmed autoimmune diseases.
So why is it difficult to diagnose these diseases? Frequently, the symptoms are vague. For example, fatigue is commonly associated with a host of autoimmune diseases from chronic Lyme disease to pernicious anemia, but fatigue is also a symptom of the common cold and influenza. Ballantyne's list of symptoms associated with autoimmune diseases includes the following:
Further, there isn't a singular test to confirm that an autoimmune process is occurring. Currently, the specific autoimmune disease must be identified based on patient history, physical examination, lab testing, and even diagnostic imaging. This very often results in being shuttled back and forth to various specialists in an effort determine the exact diagnosis. However, as this American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA) article from Dr. Noel R. Rose of Johns Hopkins explains, we have determined two major components of autoimmunity (the process of the body not recognizing and then attacking itself): genetics and environment. Evidence of genetic factors according to Dr. Rose include the following:
So if genetics helps us identify autoimmune susceptibility, does an individual with an autoimmune disease have any real hope of controlling (or even eliminating) the condition? The great news is that environment is the other factor associated with autoimmunity, and environment includes the things you eat, inhale, and slather on your skin as well as the things you do to reduce your mental, emotional, and physical stress, which means that you do have power to heal your body and slow (or perhaps halt) the disease process!
AARDA, Dr. Ballantyne's book, and Raymond Francis's Never Be Sick Again are my top three patient resources for learning self-care strategies for autoimmune diseases, but I'm also available to answer your questions about autoimmunity. You can schedule a complimentary consultation with me to determine if I can help you with your condition. Don't give up hope! Start thriving today!
Dr. Jaimie L. McCormick
Dr. McCormick is the chiropractor for OM Chiropractic, which is conveniently located in Kansas City's Crossroads District.