How to Stay Strong When You are Diagnosed With An Autoimmune Disease

You don’t need to have the mentality of having an autoimmune disease to work on these issues and get better. All you need to do is to fix the foundation- you don’t need strong medicine to suppress your symptoms. You need to stay positive and have hope that you can get help that fixes, gets to the root of and doesn’t dismiss the cause of your illness, which is what I dealt with in Western medicine for almost a decade. You can learn to heal your body starting with your gut, toxins, food choices and stress.

Our current medical profession (Western medicine) expects people to walk into an office for a 7-minute appointment; doctors need to shift their own role. The old days of ‘fixing’ people are over and that is why I switched to working with an Integrative M.D. because they take the time and help you with your lifestyle change. Eat differently, manage stress via mediation and yoga, etc. It’s harder than taking a pill; it’s about self-care and taking responsibility for this part of your care. Lifestyle changes are not easy and everyone just wants a special pill to help them feel better without having to make changes in their lives. People won’t get better unless they do the work and make lifestyle changes. That is why functional medicine has helped so many people. When people do this, they get better faster and more effectively.

Illness does not need to be debilitating; there is hope and it’s all about taking charge of your own health instead of letting a Western medicine doctor lead your life and push drugs onto you for a quick fix to hide your symptoms.

Here are a few things that helped me when I was running from doctor to doctor and no one could figure out what was wrong with me.

  1. Have a back up plan. And a back up to that back up plan. I always had a back up plan and was working with numerous doctors at once.
  2. Get a second and third opinion.
  3. Find a good and reputable acupuncturist.
  4. Try infrared saunas.
  5. Keep a binder of all your medical history including tests, blood work, doctor’s notes, etc. so that you can bring this with you to all appointments.
  6. Find the nearest Whole Foods Market or health food store when traveling to load up your refrigerator in your hotel room with fresh, organic foods.
  7. Drink organic green juices daily.
  8. Get at least 8-9 hours of sleep every night.
  9. Create a dining card for eating out and travel that you can show to your waiter for foods you can eat and not eat.
  10. Add turmeric to your food and beverages.
  11. Educate yourself through books, lectures and online forums as well as meeting people in person to talk about your struggles.
  12. Be grateful and smile every day. It will make you feel better!
  13. Remove the words “I Can’t” from your vocabulary.
  14. Remember there is a solution to all of our heath issues- some are just MUCH harder to find than others.
  15. Allow yourself to receive help from others.
  16. Reward yourself with a massage or a mani/pedicure.
  17. Start today even if you don’t know how you are going to finish.

Be sure to ask your M.D. questions to make sure they are the right doctor for you! Here is a list of Questions to Ask Your Doctor and here are a few Autoimmune Integrative Medicine Tests that I have had my Integrative M.D.’s test me for- these tests were crucial in finding out what was causing my pain.

It is essential to work with a nutritionist and an Integrative M.D. because I am sharing general information that is not intended to be medical advice. This information is only given for informational purposes.

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3 comments

  1. Thank you Amie ever so much!
    This was so encouraging and lifts a bit of weight off.
    And give me hope.

    Gratefully,
    Suzanne

  2. I was diagnosed w Sjogrens about 4/5 years ago. My worst symptom is fatigue. I’m not on medication other than low dose naltrexone which helps with aches & pains. I am taking a natural thyroid medication for hypothyroidism. I have been practicing gentle yoga & meditation. I am taking RX meds for HBP, high cholesterol & anxiety. Recently I have been having problems with my gut. No matter what I eat or don’t eat it always feels uneasy. Had a sonogram and was told I have a gassy gut so another medication which isnt t helping. Fortunately it’s not long term. I just want to know what the root cause is. I ordered pre/probiotics and will start that regimen as soon as they arrive. Any supplements I take are natural (pure encapsulations) and are tolerated well. I’m 67 in another week and do my best to stay active and involved. Recently I started getting the ‘shakes’ usually when I exert myself or have increased stress. I feel it from the inside/ out and you can see my head shaking. I have a good endocrinologist who is always willing to have conversation and think outside the box. That’s the long & short of it.

    1. Hi Susan – thanks for sharing, and we’re sorry to hear about your health troubles! I’d recommend checking out my book, Eating Clean, because you need to get to the root cause like you said! Sending you big hugs xx

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