An auto immune disease occurs when the immune system produces an inappropriate response against its own tissue or cells with subsequent injury and inflammation. Types of auto-immune disorders include Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Graves Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Diabetes, Sjogren’s Syndrome and many other autoimmune diseases, with over 75% of those affected being women.
An individual with an auto-immune disease may be genetically predisposed, however it may be triggered by infectious agents or drugs. An organ may be affected or it may be systemic, affecting many organs and tissues in the body. Although different organs/systems may are involved they share common symptoms including abdominal pain or digestive issues, fatigue, joint pain and swelling, recurring fever, swollen glands and skin problems. Diagnosis is made based on clinical symptoms, blood pathology testing and/or imaging.
Integrative Naturopathic Care to Treatment
The naturopathic approach to auto-immune conditions is to provide symptom relief and to address the underlying causes for the immune system dys-regulation to reduce inflammation and further tissue damage. Working alongside conventional medicine, Melisa will look closely at your diet to assess for nutritional deficiencies, digestive function and the microbiome (as certain pathogens have been known to trigger autoimmune conditions), environmental toxin exposures, detoxification pathways and adrenal function.
Functional testing such as IgG food sensitivity testing may be recommended to identify food antigens that are contributing to immune dysregulation, complete digestive stool analysis to assess digestive function and microbial balance in the large bowel or hair mineral analysis to identify accumulation of heavy metals. Holistic healthcare is individualised and therefore treatment with nutritional and herbal medicine is prescribed based on any current medications you are taking and your unique biochemistry.