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112. Autoimmune Disease? There's HOPE!

Updated: Jul 12

An autoimmune disease happens when your body mistakes parts of your body for an invader, like a microorganism or a cancer cell - and attacks it.

Americans have more Autoimmune diseases than any country in the world. “Developed” countries have more autoimmune diseases than less “developed” countries.



1. Toxins

a. Lead, Mercury (Large fish, farmed fish), other Heavy Metals, Mold.

2. Undetected Infections

a. Viruses, Tick-borne infections

3. The Standard American Diet (SAD) - Processed Foods and Meats, GMO’s, Preservatives.

4. Food allergies

a. Milk, Gluten, etc.

5. Microbiome imbalance – the microorganisms that live in our gut are out of balance.

6. Chronic Stress – stimulates Cortisol production, which causes inflammation.


Dealing with the causes:

1. Screen for the Toxins listed above.

a. Check the house for mold.

b. Screen for heavy metals.

c. Add chelating foods/herbs to your routine. Chelating agents can help eliminate toxins.

Cilantro and Blue Green Algae together have been used to release and then move the toxins out of the body. Parsley, Garlic, Brazil Nuts, and Milk Thistle are other chelating


2. Screen for tickborne illnesses, viral, and bacterial infections.

3. Diet. Work towards eliminating processed foods and meats. Cook with whole foods.

a. Avoid fried foods, refined carbohydrates, processed meats, refined oils, soda, lard.

b. Increase fiber intake (whole grains, fruits, vegetables). Toxins bind with fiber in the gut to move them out of the body through the stool.

c. Mediterranean diet - lots of benefits: It is high in organic fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, if eating meat – a serving is the size of a deck of cards, once a week.

d. Try an elimination diet. Try eliminating these for 10 days: Grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, nightshade vegetables, eggs, and dairy. Tobacco, alcohol, coffee, processed oils, food additives, refined and processed sugars, NSAIDs.

*After 10 days, slowly reintroduce one at a time, and see how you feel. 

*If you have a gluten allergy, try organic, whole grain, sourdough bread. Sourdough bread contains very little gluten. The fermentation process breaks down most of it. (The Bread Alone brand is made and sold locally).

*For dairy allergies, try 100% Grass Fed, Organic, and Whole milk. Not factory farmed, no toxins, no processed food fed to cows, no antibiotics (microbiome)

*Check the label carefully. If it doesn’t say 100% Grass-fed, it isn’t. They can call it Grass-Fed even if it’s only grass-fed 1/3 of the year. (I fell for this. Crazy.)

*There are coupons in the shop from Green Chef – an organic food delivery company. 6 meals a week cost ~ $90.  Stop by the shop and ask if you want to try a free box.

e. Try this Free dietician consultation through your insurance

f. Aim to drink 3 liters of water a day. This helps flush toxins through the kidneys.

4. Dysbiosis or an unhealthy Microbiome: Our gut and skin are populated with trillions of microorganisms. They’re supposed to be there. An imbalance can occur for a whole host of reasons.

***Read my blog post - #94 about the Microbiome – follow the guidelines for reintroducing healthy microorganisms back into the gut with fermented foods. It’s a long read but it’s worth every second.


5. Stress Management: Walk outside daily, breath exercises, yoga, setting boundaries.

Herbs for stress: All are available on this website. You can also visit us at 810 Washington Ave, Brooklyn, NY. Our Herbs and CBD are 100% Organic, made by Clinical Herbalist and Former Registered Nurse, owner and founder Donna Cleary.

            1. CBD – by binding with the nervous and immune system. CBD can be helpful for anxiety, depression, pain, inflammation, sleep, anti-inflammatory

2. Ashwagandha – An adaptogen, helps modulate (balance) cortisol levels. Brain tonic, it has a history of use for increasing cognitive function, reproductive tonic – can increase testosterone in men and estrogen in women, can lower blood sugar. An aphrodisiac.

3. Passionflower  - Increases GABA production – a neurotransmitter that calms the nervous system. Has some sedating properties. Try at night first to see how your body responds.

4. Cool, Calm and Collect Yourself tea  Hibiscus, peppermint, chamomile.

5. Mmmmm…. Tea – Lavender and peppermint.   


6. Address the Immune system with Medicinal Mushrooms: The mushrooms I chose for our blends contain properties that can calm an overactive immune system. They can also help boost the immune system when needed. Each is considered an Immune Modulator.  Be careful, some mushrooms only boost the immune system. You don’t want that.

The mushrooms in our blends also contain antihistamines, anti-inflammatories, antioxidants, anticarcinogens, antimicrobials. 

Each mushroom has it's own history of use as well.

a. Turkey Tail and Reishi Turkey Tail has a long history of use for cancer and Autoimmune diseases.

         b. Nerve Blend (Reishi and Lion’s Mane). Lion’s Mane has a long history of use for increasing cognitive function. It can help stimulate the production of Nerve Growth Factor, which can help regenerate damaged nerves.

c.Reishi Maintain (Reishi and Chaga)  Chaga also has a long history of use for gut and skin health.

7.     Metaphysically: Your body is attacking itself.  Are you too hard on yourself?

Research has found that there’s a very high incidence of early childhood trauma associated with autoimmune diseases. 70% of autoimmune disorders are in women, who have twice the risk of sexual assault over men. The stress of balancing job, and family responsibilities can contribute.

*Therapy, books, support groups, find ways to process trauma, delegate responsibilities.

**Toxic people can cause cortisol spikes, which can cause inflammation. Set boundaries.

Affirmations: I love myself. I keep appropriate boundaries.



Hi Margaret, I left a reply to your comment but it seems to have disappeared. Research shows that many people with gluten intolerance can eat Sourdough bread despite the small amount of gluten left after fermentation. The starter for sourdough contains lactobacillus, which breaks down the gluten. Click on this link to read it.

The problem with the American bread industry is that most companies don't ferment their bread long enough to destroy the gluten. That's why people with a gluten intolerance can often eat bread in Italy or France. Sourdough goes the extra step, breaking down more gluten than what would normally break down in the 24-hour ferment typical of bread made overseas or at home.

For those…


Sourdough bread is not gluten free, FYI.

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