May 6th

Autoimmune conditions and chronic disease – looking at the root cause

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There is an epidemic of chronic disease, autoimmune conditions and cancer around the globe, specifically in industrialized societies. When given a diagnosis, one might find themselves asking why, but rarely are the doctors offering up answers or suggesting tests to find out what is underlying. The fact of the matter is the root cause of disease is almost always multifaceted. Seemingly healthy, nourished, happy people may become diagnosed with cancer or multiple sclerosis and others living life in excess may escape it all. Research is ongoing in the area of autoimmunity and chronic disease but there is enough evidence to suggest the following to be major influences.


This image comes from the institute of Functional Medicine offering a great visual of identifying  the root cause of disease.

This image comes from the institute of Functional Medicine offering a great visual of identifying the root cause of disease.


  1. Nutrient Deficiencies- The body requires specific vitamins, minerals, fats, carbohydrates and proteins for optimal function. These nutrients come from clean, high quality fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and meats. Deficiencies can arise from not eating the right foods, to eating poor quality food grown in soils stripped of vitamins and minerals and sprayed with fertilizers and pesticides or livestock injected with hormones and antibiotics, or to the inability to break down and absorb the nutrients due to issues such as intestinal permeability, a common thread in many diseases or total villus atrophy found in Coeliac disease, etc.
  2. Undiagnosed Food Sensitivities– Gluten sensitivity is the most common food sensitivity in western society and is completely separate entity to coeliac disease, a common misconception. Food sensitivities are often an unseen part of many disorders, including psychological problems, neurological problems, autoimmune problems, skin rashes, asthma, allergies, and more.
  3. Chemical or Heavy Metal Toxicity– It is fairly safe to say that most people living in the industrialized world eating modern foods, using modern medicine, drinking the water and breathing the air are exposed to toxins. Toxins disrupt cellular communication, energy production and overall function leaving us inflamed and more susceptible to disease.
  4. Excess Stress- A massive issue in the modern life. The body is designed to manage short bursts of stress, but ongoing chronic stress can lead to hormone issues and chronic inflammation, causing dysfunction and damaging the cells.
  5. Lack of Sleep– We need 7-9 hours of restful sleep each night. Loosing hours of sleep increases the stress load on the body and deprives the body of time needed to rebuild and repair.
  6. Lack of Exercise – Our bodies are designed to move. The role exercise plays in overall well- being is massive. It reduces inflammation, increases blood flow, oxygenates the cells, improves energy, mood and more.
  7. Genetics – Our genes are hard wired at birth. We cannot change their structure but we can change their expression. Epigentics is an area of study looking at how we can influence our genes through diet and lifestyle.

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