Autoimmune Disease: The Biological Medicine Approach
BY: DR. MELINA ROBERTS
Autoimmune disease is becoming an all too common problem in our Western world. Autoimmune conditions covers a number of ailments including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, celiac disease, thyroid disease, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
Autoimmune disease means that the body is having a difficult time being able to decipher self from non-self. Our immune system is our internal protection against invaders. This internal system needs to be able to clearly distinguish self from non-self, in order to know what it will let in and what it needs to attack. In people with autoimmune disease, their body is trying to fight some sort of stressor(s) that is causing chronic, systemic inflammation. There will be different stressors such as an infectious agent like a virus, bacteria, fungi or parasites that cause inflammation and elicit an immune response, calling on the immune system to come clear this infection. Or there are proteins from an allergen that cannot be properly metabolized which causes inflammation and calls on the immune system to come clean up and clear out the allergen. Or there are heavy metals or environmental toxins which should not be in the body therefore they cause inflammation and call on the immune system to come into action and work to clear these unwanted toxins. What happens is that there is so much inflammation, so many fires that the immune system needs to put out, that the immune system becomes overloaded and does not function properly. It loses its ability to properly decipher self from non-self, which results in the body attacking its own tissues. All autoimmune disease has this same biochemical process, a challenged immune system due to chronic inflammation that cannot decipher self from non-self.
Conventional medicine uses anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids or immune suppressant drugs to combat the problem. They use the anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids to reduce the inflammation, but this does not address what is causing the inflammation. If the anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids are not enough to control the symptoms then strong immunosuppressant drugs are used to shut down the immune system which is trying to manage the inflammation. None of these medications address the cause of the inflammation, and unfortunately these medications come with numerous side effects including intestinal bleeding, kidney failure, depression, osteoporosis, muscle wasting and chronic infections. These drugs can help people feel better and manage their symptoms which can be used short-term, but they are not long-term solutions and should only be used as a bridge while we treat the cause.
The biological medicine approach is to identify what stressors are causing the inflammation, then remove those stressors, while healing up the damage from the chronic inflammation. When you reduce the load on the immune system, you allow it to function better, which allows it to reprogram itself to have the ability to decipher self from non-self. The stressors can include food intolerances, infectious agents, heavy metals, environmental toxins.
Food intolerances can be identified and treated with NeuroViscero Regulation therapy.
A great analogy is if you are not treating the cause it’s like standing on a tack and taking a lot of aspirin. The treatment is not more aspirin or a stronger immunosuppressant, it is removing the tack.
We need to treat the cause. It is only when you treat the cause that true healing is able to happen.