The immune system is a very complex part of our body, involving the interaction of the nervous, endocrine and gastrointestinal systems. The body receives signals from the outside world, and they go through multiple systems before they arrive at the immune system.
Our external environment consists of:
- The quality of the food we eat, which is connected to the condition of the soil in which it was grown.
- The quality of the air we breathe and the water we drink.
Our internal health reflects:
- The quality of the food we’ve eaten; processed and fast foods have empty calories and certain types of fat that research has show to have a negative impact on your health.
- Your genetic predisposition. With the use of epigenetics, we are able to test for certain genetic defects and then treat accordingly. For example, the MTHFR gene is now easily tested for and with the knowledge provided by this test, we are able to provide you with appropriate form of Folate for your body.
- The quality of your sleep.
- How you are responding to the stress in your life.
We strive to support your immune system, rather than suppress it. We do this by helping the internal environment of your body become as healthy as possible. The foundation of your inner health always starts with the food you eat. That creates a sturdy foundation on which to build your healthy body.
No where is eating organic more important for your health than if you are suffering from an autoimmune illness. First, nonorganic food is grown with GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) chemicals and pesticides. Research has shown there is a direct link to ingestion of these chemicals and the development of inflammation. Non-organic meat is filled with antibiotics and hormones, and has been shown to increase antibiotic resistance as well as possibly increase risk of breast and prostate cancers.
As I have mentioned earlier, the soil used to grow the food that is organic, not only has more nutrients and antioxidants, but does not have pesticides and heavy metals present in non-organic soil. When you ingest these toxic chemicals, your body has to “detox” or process from them. If you are already in a compromised immune state, your body may have a difficult time with this, adding to your inflamed state.
Next, we provide your body with the specialized supplementation it needs to decrease the inflammatory process. Some of vitamin levels we test for are:
B6 and B complex
A study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers compared blood levels of vitamin B6 and 13 different indicators of inflammation in 2,229 adults enrolled in the Framingham Offspring study. This study found a direct relationship between a low level of B6 and inflammatory markers. Also, B6, and B12—function as important co-factors for enzymes involved in estrogen detoxification
And decreased amounts of these B vitamins can disrupt estrogen detoxification, leading to an unhealthy amount of estrogen metabolites. This can result in inflammatory process for the female reproductive system.
Up to 40% of the U.S. population has a genetic variation that impairs the ability to metabolize folic acid. This can be easily accessed with a MTHFR genetic screen. If positive, supplementation with the active metabolite of Folate, L-5-methyl tetrahydrofolate (L-5-MTHF), can be especially beneficial to reduce the inflammatory process.
Mounting scientific data indicates vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, MS, and RA. The metabolized, hormonal form of vitamin D (1, 25[OH]2 D3) acts as an important immune modulator through its interactions with immune cells and involvement in regulating lymphocyte function, cytokine production, and macrophage activity. Ideally, a Vitamin D level between 50 and 75 PUT NUMBER HERE is best for your health.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly EPA, possess potent anti-inflammatory and immune regulating effects. A number of clinical trials in inflammatory and autoimmune diseases—including RA, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, psoriasis, SLE, and MS—have revealed significant benefits of omega-3 supplementation
Selenium and Zinc
Selenium and Zinc are co-factors in metabolic processes involving joint tissues and immune system function. Deficiencies of these minerals have been linked to an exacerbation of inflammation in active RA, and supplementation has been reported to reduce joint tenderness and stiffness.
The Health Of Your Digestive Tract
The health of your gastro-intestinal system is an integral part of your immune system. Your overall health, and especially your immune health, is directly related to the health of your gastrointestinal system. Up to 80% of the body’s immune system stems from the health of the gastrointestinal tract.
We check for Leaky Gut Syndrome, Small Intestine Bowel Overgrowth (SIBO), as well as food allergies. Blood sugar stability is important for a healthy immune response, so we test for this problem and if necessary, treat accordingly.
Healthy Lifestyle Intervention
Lastly, Lifestyle Interventions are a critical component for healing your autoimmune conditions! This includes stress management, quality and quantity of your sleep, exercise and what I like to call “your fun quotient”. What activities do you do that bring you enjoyment, laughter and relaxation? Even a few moments of this type of activity a day has been shown to be of benefit to your health.