What Causes Autoimmune Diseases?

What Causes Autoimmune Diseases?

You’d think that there are enough diseases, illnesses, and conditions in the world without creating our own, wouldn’t you? But that’s exactly what we do to ourselves with autoimmune diseases – our bodies attack themselves! Here you will find out what causes autoimmune disease and how to prevent it.

What happens is that our immune systems (normally our guardians against infection and disease) are fooled into thinking that our own body tissue is the enemy. It then sets about manufacturing antibodies that attack these tissues causing various inflammatory conditions, which are very painful, can be seriously debilitating, and even deadly.

Who Autoimmune Diseases Affect The Most

Autoimmune diseases can affect both women and men, but women suffer the most, according to statistics – 75% of the time. It may have something to do with the fact that women’s immune systems are more enhanced than men’s. On the one hand, they’re more effective at their job; on the other – there’s more chance of something going wrong with them.

Generally speaking, autoimmune diseases manifest themselves in women 3 times more often than men; but this figure is even higher with certain diseases.

It’s a Problem of National Proportions

It is reckoned that 50 million Americans live with autoimmune disorders today, and of this 50 million, 30 million are women. What causes autoimmune disease? Many specialists on the subject maintain that autoimmune disease is amongst the top 10 killers of women below the age of 65. As a disease category, it is the 4th largest in terms of debilitation here in the US.

The Age-Old Problem – Recognition – or Lack of it

One of the problems with autoimmunity is that the conventional medical fraternity recognizes it as a bona fide category of disease. It’s probably because it transcends and crosses many specialist areas such as audiology, cardiology, dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, hematology, nephrology, neurology, and rheumatology. Whilst the diseases themselves are given serious attention, little, or no attention is given to the root cause – autoimmunity.

The Focus is Treating Symptoms – Not Seeking Out The Root Cause

The majority of professionals in the conventional medical sector are mostly concerned with treating the symptoms of diseases. It is, after all, that they’re trained to do; identify an illness and prescribe appropriate medication to deal with the symptoms as quickly as possible. Not enough time is spent thinking about and trying to identify the root causes itself, which in many cases, and more increasingly so, is autoimmunity.

Undiagnosed and Untreated in The Early Stages

Because of the lack of recognition within the conventional medical community, autoimmune disease (particularly its start in the early stages) doesn’t get properly diagnosed. In a way, it’s not surprising because the women who develop autoimmunity often have symptoms that come and go in the beginning. These women are therefore often labeled by the medical practitioners they visit as being hypochondriacs or time wasters.

Too Little – Too Late

The result is that in all too many instances, diseases, or autoimmunity, is allowed to progress untreated, until it develops into an easily identifiable disease, causing serious damage in later life when it fully manifests itself; something like arthritis, for example, which, by the time it has developed, cannot be cured – only its symptoms, treated.

Prevention is Better Than Cure – Causation in The Key

Causation is key. If we can find the cause of any disease, we stand a better chance of preventing that disease from developing in the first place. As they say – prevention is better than cure, particularly, when in many instances, no cure is available once a disease has developed. In one sense, autoimmunity is still a very young disease in terms of its being recognized. This means that not enough money has been, or is being, thrown into research. The majority of the thought and theorizing into the causes of autoimmunity comes from those who pursue holistic health lifestyles and professionals within the alternative medical community.

The Jury’s Out

Most people agree that no one actually knows with any degree of certainty exactly what causes the immune system to react in the way it does with autoimmunity. Many theorize that it could be the result of an attack by:

  • Bacterial agents
  • Viruses

Some people hypothesize that it could be the result of

  • Toxins
  • Environmental issues

Most people do tend to agree that genes could have a big part to play in the passing down of a propensity towards developing autoimmunity.

Sunlight and Lupus – and Other Possible Factors of What Causes Autoimmune Disease

One particular cause or trigger of Lupus disease is sunlight, which can act as a trigger and worsen an existing condition. There are other possible causes, too, the full effect of which autoimmunity diseases are not properly understood in terms of autoimmunity diseases. These include:

  • Hormone imbalances
  • Pregnancy (linked to hormone imbalance)
  • Severe stress
  • Aging (aging reduces the effectiveness and efficiency of many body functions and processes – including immune system functionality)

Dealing With Inflammation (What Causes Autoimmune Disease)

At the end of the day, we know about autoimmune diseases because they cause inflammation in the body – and it’s this inflammation that causes a recognized disease to manifest itself – arthritis is probably the one that most people are familiar with. From a holistic health lifestyle point of view, one of the best ways we understand dealing with inflammation is through diet, and making sure your diet includes plenty of fresh foods that fight inflammation may be important. Examples include:

  • Fatty fish, which is rich in omega-3
  • Dark leafy greens
  • Nuts
  • Low-fat dairy products
  • Capsicums and chilies
  • Tomatoes
  • Beets
  • Spices such as Ginger and Turmeric
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh berries
  • Sharp cherries

Minimizing The Chance of Developing Autoimmunity The Holistic Health Lifestyle Way

Good diet, regular physical exercise, minimizing or abstaining from smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol, minimizing your caffeine intake, and living in as toxin-free an environment as possible are all things that may help to minimize inflammation and help to stave off the development of what causes autoimmune disease.