“Optimal functioning of the immune system, it turns out, is dependent upon feeling good.” – Dr. Marcey Shapiro, MD
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) says that 23.5 million Americans suffer from autoimmune disease (AD). And according to their estimates, it beats cancer patients by a long stretch, who are at 9 million.
Autoimmune disease even beats heart disease, which is “only” at 22 million.
On the other hand, the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA) says that 50 million is the correct number.
According to them, the NIH only included “24 diseases for which good epidemiology studies were available.”
As of today, there are 80 known conditions related to autoimmune disease.
And as widespread as this disease is, not many people fully understand how it works – let alone know what it is.
Who Guards the Guardians?
The story of autoimmune disease begins in your gut. Deep in your small intestine, you’ll find a gateway that keeps your bloodstream safe.
This is the gut barrier, and it’s a lining made up of different barriers. It includes gastric acid, mucus and a wall composed of epithelial cells.
There’s another contingent in place for good measure, which is your friendly gut bacteria.
They’re in the TRILLIONS, and their job is to help with digestive functions like breaking down the food you ate.
And more importantly, these guys suppress the growth of harmful microorganisms and keep the bacterial tide in YOUR favor.
So, they all work together as a highly sophisticated security system. They let in the good stuff (like nutrients and vitamins) and keep out the bad stuff (like viruses and bacteria).
But if something goes wrong with one of the components of this intricate defense network, this leads to all sorts of immunity problems.
This is known as a “leaky gut.”
And when bad bacteria and other threats manage to exploit weaknesses in your gut barrier, they can get inside your body.
Not just inside your gut, but in your bloodstream.
Once that happens, your immune system launches an attack against these external threats. It’ll send in antibodies to meet these invaders, but it can get ugly if this goes on for too long.
A leaky gut lets too much bad stuff in, and it puts your immune system on full alert all the time. And if this natural mechanism gets worn out, you’re in trouble.
This constant, heightened state of alert is called chronic systemic inflammation.
Since your body is so busy dealing with those invaders breaching your gut barrier, it will take longer for you to heal injuries or fight infections.
Normally, your immune system should only destroy actual threats like viruses and other harmful bacteria.
But with all the chaos going on, foreign invaders can trick your body into attacking itself.
What happens is that they pull a trick known as “molecular mimicry.” These intruders can disguise themselves as healthy, normally occurring cells inside your own body.
Many studies have documented this phenomenon.
The University of Utah did a study called “Molecular mimicry as a mechanism of autoimmune disease” which says that some foreign antigens share the same sequence as the body’s antigens.
So, once these impostors break through, your immune system will target your healthy cells rather than those external threats.
This is how autoimmune disease starts – and it affects many regions of the body, such as:
• Adrenal glands
• Digestive tract
• Blood vessels
• Red blood cells
• Nervous system
• Connective tissues
And depending on which organs are affected, this can lead to conditions like:
• Autoimmune hepatitis
• Crohn’s disease
• Rheumatoid arthritis
• Multiple sclerosis
In other words, your body has turned on itself.
So, how do you STOP the system meant to protect you from doing you HARM?
That brings us to the next point…
Good Food = Happy Gut
As you’ve just learned, the problem starts when a leaky gut lets in these troublemakers into your bloodstream.
So your first priority is to close the breach and fill in those cracks in your gut barrier.
The stronger your first line of defense is, the better you can stop those invaders from stirring up trouble in the first place.
While some people are genetically predisposed to have certain conditions like autoimmune disease, it doesn’t mean they can’t do anything about it.
On the contrary, it’s very much possible to restore the harmony of your gut bacteria.
When it comes to immunity, your DNA is not your destiny.
You might have certain genes that make you more prone to leaky gut and other problems…
…but nothing actually happens until you ACTIVATE them.
You see, it takes specific factors to trigger these genetically coded traits, such as:
• Level of physical activity (i.e., how often you work out)
• Toxins in the environment (e.g., air pollution, water quality, etc.)
But there’s one factor that most people ignore: FOOD.
What you eat plays a HUGE role in your gut health. Unhealthy, processed foods are stimulating and addictive, which compels you to consume more of it.
This is dangerous because they’re incompatible with your gut barrier, making it WEAKER over time.
And this causes an inflammatory response in a lot of people. If they keep this up long enough, it leads to autoimmune diseases.
For instance, sugar is like a magnet for harmful bacteria in your gut.
Having too many cookies and donuts will upset the delicate balance of good intestinal bacteria.
Worse, high blood sugar levels trigger insulin resistance. This, in turn, contributes to inflammation. And sugar is only one of many offenders that damage gut health.
Your goal then is to replace the processed junk in your diet with whole, natural foods that can heal your gut. Doing this will help you keep that inflammation down.
That way, you can close the floodgates that lead to autoimmune disease.
What to Eat
The good news is that plenty of food can promote gut health AND fight inflammation.
Let’s go through some of the best ones:
- Avocado: this contains healthy fats which help you manage your appetite. This keeps you from overeating and your blood sugar levels stable. It also supports cells which are essential to a healthy immune system. You’ll even get a good serving of vitamins B6, C, E and K – not to mention fiber and potassium.
- Coconut: this fruit is also loaded with healthy fats such as caprylic acid, lauric acid and capric acid which fuel your brain and body. On top of that, it’s an immune superbooster. Coconut helps you absorb vitamins and minerals better which strengthens your immunity. Better yet, it improves insulin production; this is important in preventing inflammation.
- Green tea: Tufts University did a study on green tea, and they found that drinking it can help reverse the effects of autoimmune disease. Other benefits come from its caffeine and L-theanine content; together, they provide both energy and better mental alertness.
- Sunflower seeds: this is full of nutrients that don’t only fight inflammation. It also prevents heart disease and helps you lose weight. One of its star nutrients, vitamin E, has anti-inflammatory qualities and helps avert brain diseases like Alzheimer’s.
- Macadamia Nuts: like the other superfoods above, this contains good fats that promote low cholesterol levels and prevent heart problems. There are also other nutrients like vitamin A, folate, iron, manganese and protein. More importantly, they contain plant-based compounds. These act as antioxidants that protect you against free radical damage and inflammation. As a result, macadamia nuts promote good gut health.
- Turmeric: according to a study by the Niigata University of Pharmacy and Applied Life Sciences, curcumin (the critical component in turmeric) can protect you against cardiac inflammation. Not only that, this spice has also been linked to prevention of other inflammation-related conditions such as neurodegenerative disorders and cancer.
How to Plug the Leaks FOR GOOD
Remember, autoimmune disease is only one of the many sicknesses resulting from a leaky gut.
Having a weak gut barrier (and the inflammation that goes along with it) means you’re also vulnerable to asthma, acne, allergies, heart disease, diabetes and stroke.
And surprisingly, prolonged inflammation can also lead to unlikely conditions like ADHD and depression!
Like I mentioned before, it’s the modern, processed food that’s mostly to blame. They’re strategically designed to hijack your biological signals and push you to overeat.
The more you eat, the sicker you get. Millions of people are at the mercy of this insidious cycle.
But there is hope.
By learning precisely what this “Frankenstein food” does to your body, you’ll also learn how to escape its seductive grip.
This hard-hitting documentary series reveals the modern food industry’s worst secrets: FOOD, HEALTH AND YOU
Watch it now and break the unhealthy cycle…