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Autoimmune Conditions

The industrialization of our food chain and high levels of stress directly correlate to the skyrocketing rates of both chronic and autoimmune conditions in the western world.

We may not be able to pinpoint the exact cause for the development of an autoimmune disorder, but we do know that specific dietary and lifestyle choices will drastically increase our likelihood of developing a chronic or autoimmune condition in our lifetime.  We also know that these diseases did not exist in cultures who ate their traditional diet, nor do they exist today in areas of the world that have not been exposed to our westernized diet.

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Autoimmune Conditions

Autoimmune Hepatitis
Autoimmune hepatitis is inflammation in the liver that occurs when the body's immune system attacks the liver cells.  This can lead to scarring and hardening of the liver, and possibly liver failure.
Alopecia Areata
The immune system attacks hair follicles (the structures from which hair grows).  It usually does not threaten health, but it can greatly affect the way a person looks.
Addison's Disease
A condition where the adrenal glands do not produce enough hormones such as cortisol and aldosterone.
Celiac Disease
A condition where the body cannot tolerate gluten, a protein naturally found in wheat, rye, and barley, and also in some medications.   When people with celiac disease eat foods containing gluten, the immune system responds by damaging the lining of the small intestine.
Type-1 Diabetes
A condition where the body cannot make insulin, which can cause high blood sugar.  This can cause damage to the eyes, kidneys, nerves, gums, and teeth, and can also lead to heart disease.
Glomerulonephritis (Glomerular Disease)
An inflammation of the tiny filters in the kidneys (glomeruli).  Glomeruli are responsible for removing excess fluid, electrolytes, and waste from your bloodstream and passing them into your urine.  Glomerulonephritis can be acute (a sudden attack) or chronic (come on gradually).
Granulomatosis with Polyangitis (GPA)
Also known as Wegener's Granulomatosis, this is an uncommon disorder that causes inflammation of the blood vessels, restricting blood flow to the organs.  This condition can also produce a type of inflammatory tissue known as a granuloma, which can destroy normal tissue.
Graves' Disease
A condition where the thyroid (the small gland at the base of the neck) makes too much thyroid hormone.  While a number of disorders can lead to hyperthyroidism, Graves' disease is the most common.  The over-stimulation of the thyroid can cause it to enlarge to twice its size (goiter).
Guillain-Barré Syndrome
A condition where the body's immune system attacks the nervous system.  Weakness and tingling in fingers and toes are usually the first symptoms.  These sensations can quickly spread, eventually paralyzing the whole body.  At its most severe, it is a medical emergency requiring hospitalization. 
Hashimoto's Disease (Thyroiditis)
A condition where the immune system attacks the thyroid gland.  The resulting inflammation often leads to an under-active thyroid gland (hypothyroidism).  Hashimoto's disease is the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the US.  It primarily affects middle-aged women, but can also affect men and children of any age.
Hemolytic Anemia
A condition where the immune system destroys red blood cells, and the body's bone marrow is unable to make new red blood cells fast enough to meet the body's demand.  As a result, the body does not receive the level of oxygen it needs from the blood to function well.  Tiredness, arrhythmias, an enlarged heart, and heart failure can result.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
Chronic inflammation of all or part of the digestive tract results in the two most common forms of IBD:
     • Crohn's disease
     • Ulcerative colitis
IBD can be painful and debilitating, and sometimes leads to life-threatening complications.
Lupus (SLE - Systemic Lupus Erythematosus)
A chronic inflammatory condition where the body's immune system attacks tissues and organs throughout the body, including joints, skin, kidneys, heart, lungs, and brain. 
Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
A condition where the immune system attacks the protective sheath (myelin) that covers the nerves, affecting the brain and spinal cord.  Damage to the myelin causes interference in the communication between the brain, spinal cord, and other areas of the body.  In some cases, this condition may result in the deterioration of the nerves themselves.
Myasthenia Gravis
Caused by a breakdown in the normal communication between nerves and muscles, leading to the weakness and rapid fatigue of voluntary muscles.
Pernicious Anemia
A decrease in red blood cell count that occurs when the intestines cannot properly absorb vitamin B12.
A condition affecting the lifecycle of skin cells, causing these cells to produce too rapidly and collect on the skin's surface.  This excess skin forms scaley and dry red patches that can sometimes be painful.
Polyarteritis Nodosa
A blood vessel disease that affects the arteries the blood vessels carrying oxygen-rich blood to organs and tissues. 
An inflammatory muscle condition that causes weakness of the skeletal muscles that control movement.  It is classified as one of the three chronic inflammatory myopathy (muscle) conditions:
     •  Polymyositis
     •  Dermatomyositis
     •  Inclusion body myositis
Primary Biliary Cirrhosis
A condition in which the bile ducts in the liver are slowly destroyed.  Bile is produced in the liver, which helps digest food and remove worn-out blood cells and toxins.  When bile ducts are damaged, harmful toxins can build up in the liver that can then lead to irreversible scarring of liver tissue (cirrhosis).
Rheumatoid Arthritis
A condition where the immune system attacks the lining of the joints throughout the body, especially the small joints in the hands and feet.  Unlike the wear-and-tear of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of the joints and can cause a painful swelling that may result in bone erosion and joint deformity.
A growth of tiny inflammatory cells in different parts of your body, including the lymph nodes, lungs, liver, eyes, skin, or other tissues.
Abnormal growth of connective tissue in the skin and blood vessels (the fibers that provide the framework and support for the body), resulting in the hardening and tightening of these tissues. 
Sjögren's Syndrome
A condition where the immune system targets the glands that make moisture, such as tears and saliva.  The two commonest symptoms are dry eyes and dry mouth.
The swelling and irritation of the middle layer of the eye, known as the uvea.  The uvea provides most of the blood supply to the retina.  The most common type of uveitis is an inflammation of the iris, called iritis (or anterior uveitis).
Here, the cells that produce melanin, the pigment that gives skin, eyes, and hair their color, die or no longer form melanin.  This causes slowly enlarging white patches to form on the skin.  Vitiligo can also affect the tissue inside the nose and mouth. 


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