The world we are living in today is full of people with autoimmune disorders, and 70% of autoimmune conditions are caused by environmental factors. If you think about it in the last 50 years we have seen a dramatic increase in the production and use of chemicals, pollutants, and toxins, so no wonder we’ve seen an increase in autoimmune (and other diseases) conditions, which is exactly why I will never stop shouting how important lowering your toxic load and toxic exposures are.
Last week I talked about lifestyle changes you can make in your life to overcome your autoimmune condition, and this week I wanted to focus on the 6 toxins in particular that are linked to autoimmunity. If you have an autoimmune condition or know someone who does, share this information, it can be lifesaving.
6 Toxins Linked to Autoimmunity:
One of the most common heavy metals that show up in heavy metal tests is Mercury. You may encounter this toxin in fish, amalgam fillings, certain vaccines (those containing thimerosal). Mercury has been linked to Hashimoto’s, Grave’s, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Epstein-Barr Virus, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Mercury lurks in our receptor sites blocking production of selenium and iodine. Without selenium and iodine the body will begin to attack the thyroid. If you do not have enough regulatory T cells to calm the immune system down, the body will continue to attack the thyroid with no signal to shut off, leading to Hashimoto’s and Grave’s Disease.
Mercury is also an excitatory toxin, it hangs out in nervous tissue causing spasms and chronic pain. Consequently, an overload of Mercury residing in nervous tissue can trigger genes for both Multiple Sclerosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Here’s what you can do: First, test mercury levels, this will help determine how much detoxing you need to do. Second, avoid further exposure to high-mercury fish like shark, swordfish and tuna. Third, be cautious about vaccines and if you have amalgam fillings, aka silver fillings, you might look into having them removed by a biological dentist, you can find one here.
We all know we should eat organic and rinse our fruits and veggies before eating them, but have you ever wondered why it’s so important? A study showed farm workers on non-organic farms displayed higher rates of Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
If you have been exposed to a high amount of pesticides or often eaten non-organic produce these toxins can be removed. 17 hours of autophagy fasting can help eliminate toxins out of your system.
Asbestos, Dioxins, Silica dust, and Lead
Many toxins hide behind our walls, floors and under cabinets. For instance, when we move or remodel our homes, many of these toxins get disturbed.
A study of post 9/11 clean up workers showed that they developed autoimmune conditions such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Spondyloarthritis, Inflammatory Mio Cystitis, Lupus and Scleroderma at a high rate.
Research shows these conditions can be triggered by asbestos, dioxins, silica dust, and lead in the burned down buildings. For those of us living in California through the wildfires, smoke from burning home can contain these same toxins.
Be aware that prescription drugs and medications are synthetically made with made side effects. Case in point, there is a list of over 40 drugs that can trigger a Lupus flare up.
Vaccines also contain chemicals, called adjuvants, meant to trigger an immune response. However, if your body is unable to turn off the immune response, it can lead to an autoimmune condition.
Silicone (breast implants)
An important thing to discuss before getting silicone breast implants is that they have been linked to Rheumatoid Arthritis as well as other autoimmune conditions. If you have breast implants and want to know more, check out this podcast I did with professional soccer player, Diane Kazer who had a negative impact on her health after breast implants. If you do have silicone implants, consider removing them.
A 2013 report from the National Center for Healthy Housing estimated that about 40% of all homes have mold. Hidden mold is a common trigger for autoimmune conditions. Oftentimes, only a few members of a family that live with mold will display any symptoms or signs of illness.
There was a recent study focusing on a family that had been living in mold showed that half of the family was mildly affected by the mold in their home (asthma, sneezing, skin rashes) while the other half triggered multiple autoimmune conditions and in some cases even cancer.
If you think mold may be a factor, I highly recommend testing your home for mold. There is also an easy way to test if you have been exposed to black mold with a urine test.
Fasting and Detoxing for Recovery
Autophagy fasting (16-18 hours) is an effective way of eliminating toxins from the body. However, we know that certain toxins, like heavy metals for example, get stored deep in fat tissue. In these cases, longer periods of fasting and fat burning, as well as supplementation may be necessary to help dislodge and remove toxins.
Again, testing is a great first step, but if you have symptoms and likely exposure to toxins then I recommend either joining my 15 Day Fat Burner Reset, or my more intensive 90-Day Toxin Reset. In both of these courses I will not only teach you essential fasting principles for detox, but teach you how to live a less toxic lifestyle.