Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s immune system attacks healthy tissues and leaves you with symptoms that linger for long periods. Autoimmune diseases are not caused by any organ, but due to an overactive immune system that fails to recognize the difference between healthy and unhealthy cells. An autoimmune disease can change how organs work and can also cause abnormal growth of any organ. It is estimated that nearly 50 million Americans are affected by autoimmune diseases.
Autoimmune diseases usually swing between remission and flare-up periods. Since there has been no definitive cure for most of the autoimmune diseases, many treatments and therapies work towards alleviating symptoms and avoiding further health complications. Autoimmune diseases make the body weak. Treatments can also take a toll on the body. Despite the immune system going rogue, it is possible to live a healthy life by adopting specific healthy habits. Here are a few tips that can help to live a fulfilled life, despite having an autoimmune disease.
- Eat an anti-inflammatory diet with whole foods: An anti-inflammatory diet helps to keep the immune system strong. Your diet should include foods rich in antioxidants, omega-3, minerals, and essential fatty acids; green leafy vegetables, salmon, beets, flaxseeds, turmeric, ginger and so on are some of the elements of an anti-inflammatory diet.
- Get tests done for food allergies: With autoimmune diseases, it is necessary to be aware of food allergies to avoid the further weakening of the immune system. People with autoimmune diseases are allergic to soy or dairy products, wheat, corn, shellfish, nuts, and certain types of fruits. With tests such as IgG food testing, a doctor can determine whether you have any food allergies.
- Keep the gut healthy: The immune system is heavily dependent on the gut. A good gut health ensures that the immune system does not go haywire. One of the first steps towards fighting autoimmune diseases is to fix the gut. This can be done by including foods with high probiotic content. Probiotics are healthy bacteria that keep the gut clean and heals it.
- Have a regular exercise routine: A regular exercise routine has an anti-inflammatory effect on the body. It is not necessary to do an intense workout. Yoga, tai chi, jogging, brisk walking or just walking can work as well. The goal is to keep the body active. A regular exercise routine will not only help to keep you physically fit, but also help to have better mood, weight control, and sleep routine.
- Sleep for adequate hours: Adequate rest is essential to rejuvenate not only the mind but also the body. Poor sleep can have a deteriorating effect on the immune system and aggravate the symptoms of the autoimmune disease. It is essential to sleep at least for eight hours to ensure that you are well rested.