Acupuncture for Autoimmunity
I have a personal passion for treating auto-immunity in my acupuncture clinic, since my Significant Other was diagnosed with MS several years ago. We immediately started treating him with a combination of Chinese medicine and anti-inflammatory nutrition, and he’s living a completely normal life, with no sign of the disease… at all.
But this success story isn’t just an isolated incident, I see this with my acupuncture patients as well. It’s why I feel so passionate about helping people with this disease.
Unfortunately, the past several years have seen an exponential rise in the number of patients coming in for acupuncture for auto-immune conditions. Once you’re diagnosed with one auto-immune disease, it’s usually just a matter of time before your body starts attacking itself somewhere else as well, leading to more and more diseases.
We MUST stop the inflammation at its source.
Acupuncture & Chinese herbs for Auto-Immunity
Why auto-immunity happens is up for much debate, but acupuncturists have their own theories for how to treat it. We look more at the ways the disease is playing out in each person’s individual body, causing unique imbalances and symptoms, and caused by unique imbalances. A body in balance is a body less likely to have over or under-active functioning.
Like with any other illness, as an acupuncturist I will take a thorough look at how it’s playing out in YOUR body, which might be very different from how it’s playing out in another patient with the same diagnosis.
Obviously we need to calm down an overactive immune system, but at the same time we must nourish and build up the body so the immune system can still function where it needs to — to fight pathogens and disease.
The western treatment plan of suppressing the immune system with steroids not only sets people up for other problems, but creates many other symptoms to go along with those directly associated with the disease. Many believe, as I do, that the medicines used to treat auto-immunity are actually directly related to its progression.
Nutrition for Auto-immunity
One of the most important “non-acupuncture” approaches that needs to be taken is a look at nutrition. Are you eating foods that are causing an allergic response, triggering your immune system into over-activity? Are you eating foods that your body reacts negatively to, causing chronic inflammation? Are you eating foods which, based on your Chinese medical diagnosis of imbalance, are the exact ones which will increase the imbalances that caused the disease in the first place?
Addressing nutrition can dramatically improve your symptoms and progression of the disease.
In some cases I will send patients to doctors who I work with, who can order food sensitivities and possibly other necessary tests, to help us determine any potential food related issues.
Of course each patient is different, arriving in my office with a different history, lifestyle factors, and length of disease. All these things will play into how a patient responds to treatment. Because of its complexity, auto-immune disease in general benefits the most from a multi-pronged approach, including acupuncture, herbs, supplements, and nutrition. The more a patient is willing to use every tool available, including lifestyle choices, the faster and more successful their treatment will be.
Coming to me for auto-immune illness is the best choice for those who are willing to be a part of the healing process – in other words, to look at lifestyle and dietary factors that could be pivotal for longterm health. This is not like the western approach where you’re given a pill (or pills) and told to just live with it, and to continue everything you were doing before.
For those willing to be a partner in their healing, treatment is generally very successful and I’m able to see a dramatic turnaround in people’s health. Often people are able to completely stay off drugs for treatment, and to get back to their “pre auto-immune” lifestyle.