You can cure lupus but conventional medicine states there is no cure for Lupus. Apparently, they didn’t read this article on natural Lupus treatment. There is hope…
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease in which one’s immune system attacks their body’s own healthy tissue and organs.
This triggers high levels of persistent inflammation, which can negatively affect practically every part of the body such as: the heart, joints, skin, brain, kidneys, lungs and endocrine glands. And, unfortunately, according to conventional medicine, no natural Lupus treatments exist.
There are 4 different types of Lupus including:
1. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
Affects a major organ or more—such as the brain, lungs, heart or kidneys. Represents more than 70% of all Lupus cases.
2. Cutaneous Lupus (Skin)
Affects only the skin, causing inflammation, redness, rashes, dryness and/or peeling skin.
3. Drug-induced Lupus
Accounts for about 10 percent of all lupus cases; caused by high doses of certain medications. The symptoms of drug induced lupus are similar to systemic lupus; however, symptoms usually subside when the medications are discontinued.
4. Neonatal Lupus
A rare form of lupus in which the mother’s antibodies affect the fetus. At birth, the baby may have a skin rash, liver problems, or low blood cell counts, but symptoms typically disappear completely after six months with no lasting effects.
Who Gets Lupus?
More than 5 million people worldwide, and 1.5 million Americans, have some form of lupus, with women representing up to 80% of all cases.
Lupus can easily go “under the radar” for years, and is typically diagnosed when a person is in his or her 30’s or 40’s—after other similar diseases, like hypothyroidism, eczema and skin rashes, and anemia alone, have been ruled out.
Symptoms of Lupus are vast, and no two Lupus cases may be alike, but some common symptoms include:
- Fatigue and low energy (despite sleeping 7-9 hours)
- Shortness of breath
- Skin rashes/reddening of skin
- Raynaud’s syndrome (cold extremities, hands and feet that go numb or turn white/purple when cold)
- Poor Fluid Production: Sjögren’s syndrome is sometimes triggered by lupus (a type of autoimmune disorder that affects the glands ability to produce tears and saliva).
- Fluid retention/swelling
- Brain fog
- Stiff joints and swelling
- Irregular periods/low libido
- Hair loss
- Photosensitivity (sensitive to light; sunburn easily)
- Recurring fevers/illness
- Poor immune function (get sick easily)
The causes of Lupus, like other autoimmune conditions, are not fully understood by the conventional paradigm and text books; but as more and more research evolves, and the practice of functional medicine expands, we are able to better understand the root causes of the disease (not just recognize the symptoms).
While genetic predisposition can also play a role, genetics are only responsible for 5-10% of all diseases—autoimmune diseases included. The other 90-95% of autoimmune disease causes are lifestyle, dietary, environmental and gut-health related. In other words: even if you have the genes or “antibodies” for Lupus, your Lupus genes won’t be “flared” unless other lifestyle, dietary, environmental and gut stressors are at play.
Common lifestyle, dietary, environmental and gut-related triggers of Lupus include:
- Environmental toxic exposures (chemicals in products, tap water, mold, mercury overload)
- Underlying gut pathologies (bacterial overgrowth, yeast/fungal overgrowth, parasites, intestinal permeability)
- Immune dysfunction
- Reduced oxygen deliverability (anemia, low red blood cells)
- Blood sugar imbalances (over-reliance on coffee, sugar)
- Longterm medication or synthetic hormone use
- Nutrient deficiencies (including iodine, selenium, iron, zinc, B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin D, Vitamin K, and magnesium)
- Chronic infections (Epstein Barr Virus, Herpes, HIV/Aids, Lyme, Leukemia/Cancer, neuron infection)
- Eating disorders/disordered eating habits
- Overwork—without rest, breaks, fun or balance
- Poor quality foods/inflammatory foods (gluten, dairy, soy, industrial seed oils, sugars)
- Mitochondrial dysfunction (cell dysfunction)
- HPA Axis Dysfunction (chronic stress; circadian rhythm disruption; lack of sleep; burning a candle at both ends; screen over-exposure)
- Sedentary lifestyles or overtraining
One Root Cause
Although there are TONS of different stressful triggers to Lupus and other autoimmune diseases, all autoimmune diseases share one key characteristic: Inflammation in the body.
Autoimmune diseases, like Lupus, are characterized by an “inflammatory response” or “stress response”— when your body attacks itself and its own tissues in the presence of “stress.”
In Celiac disease, the body attacks the intestines when gluten is also present. In Hashimoto’s, the body attacks the thyroid when it’s under more stress—such as from overtraining or lack of sleep. And, in Lupus, the body attacks various parts of your body, when it’s in stressed-out mode!
The root cause of all sources of stress?
Two words: Gut health. Or rather: “leaky gut.”
Believe it or not, your gut health plays a leading role in your body’s own defense system against stress and immune dysfunction by and large. If your gut is unhealthy or leaky, you are more susceptible to experiencing an autoimmune disease—particularly if you have the genetics or antibodies to back it up.
The Gut-Lupus Connection
Your gut is the gateway to your total body health and inflammatory processes—immune function included.
In fact, you have more than 100 trillion gut bacteria throughout your body—not just located in your GI tract, but relocated to other places too, like your mouth, skin, heart and endocrine glands (that is 10 times more gut bacteria than actual human cells!).
Moreover 80% of your immune system (the system that defends your body against autoimmune disease) is housed inside your gut, and your gut bacteria play a crucial role in how your immune system works and functions.
What Do Gut Bacteria Do?!
Although the word “bacteria” may sound like a bad or dirty word, the vast majority of your gut bacteria are non-pathogenic (non-disease causing)—at least when your body is healthy.
Every person has different types and amounts of gut bacteria, and those people with “healthier strains” of gut bacteria and a “wider, more diverse variety” of gut bacteria (not just the same strains) are generally healthier as a whole—metabolism, hormones, immune function, weight, energy and lower amounts of disease (including autoimmune disease and Lupus).
The main role of your (healthy) gut bacteria is to keep all your body’s daily essential processes “healthy” and in running smoothly including:
- Nutrient absorption (making the Vitamin C in your orange actually be used by your body)
- Hormone balance
- Maintaining a healthy weight and metabolism
- Maintenance of your intestinal lining (preventing “leaky gut” and digestive wors)
- “Feeding” ALL of your cells and neurotransmitters to function properly (including your brain health)
- Fighting off inflammation and protection against “pathogens” (bad guys, toxins, pesticides, illnesses)
- Keeping your immune system operating smoothly
In short: gut bacteria play an important role, not only in digestive health, but in wider aspects of health, including weight, metabolic health, hormone health, immune function and…fighting against autoimmune attacks.
Unfortunately, if your gut bacteria are unhealthy, OR your digestive system is not healthy, then autoimmune disease is more likely.
Leaky Gut 101
The gut barrier normally prevents the passage of bacteria—particularly pathogenic or unhealthy gut bactera— to other organs. However, in autoimmune disease, a “phenomenon” known as “leaky gut” is often at play, leading to inflammation throughout the body, like that observed in Lupus.
Leaky gut or “intestinal permeability” is a syndrome characterized by weakening of the gut tissue lining of your intestines and the “leaking” of food and unwanted proteins and particles into your bloodstream, in turn, provoking an inflammatory response and disrupting healthy bacteria and digestion.
Countless research has observed the break down of the gut lining in autoimmune disease, followed by the process of “autoimmunity” (self attack). For instance, in one study of lupus-prone mice, scientists discovered their gut barrier function was impaired and the mice had notable growth of bacteria in other parts of their body including veins, mesenteric lymph nodes and liver (McHugh, 2018).
Another study found that when mice were given healthy gut bacteria (Lactobacillus species, a type of bacteria commonly seen in fermented yogurt cultures), Lupus symptoms were decreased; however, when they were given Lachnospiraceae (a type of Clostridia, or unhealthy gut bacteria), their Lupus symptoms worsened (H. Zhang et al, 2014).
How does leaky gut happen?
Good question! Leaky gut happens when your digestive system gets stressed from environmental and lifestyle factors (i.e. overtraining, eating disorders, lack of sleep, poor diet, environmental toxins, etc.) and/or underlying gut conditions (like parasites, SIBO, and dysbiosis—imbalanced healthy and unhealthy bacteria).
Think of leaky gut like a flat tire—it is a common “malfunction” or a leak that happens when you hit a stressful speed bump or get a “nail in your tire,” such as:
- Not chewing your food thoroughly
- Eating too fast or in a hurry (preventing proper food breakdown)
- Frequently eating gut-irritating ingredients and chemicals your body DOESN’T recognize as “food” or can’t easily digest (conventional meat with hormones and antibiotics, Quest Bars, Halo Top, Instant Oatmeal, sugary granola bars, Diet Coke, frozen dinners, hydrogenated oils)
- Long-term use of medications or antibiotics
- Chronic stress (under-sleeping, overtraining, constant worry or anxiety, high alcohol or smoking
- Erratic eating habits (binging, purging, restriction, etc.)
- History of Infections or Illness (bacterial, virus, heavy metals, fungal overgrowth)
- Lack of fermented foods and fibers (probiotics and pre-biotics)
- Other digestive issues, like SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), liver/gallbladder dysfunction, parasites, food intolerances, etc.
(The same stressful causes as Lupus itself!)
These stressors can linger and go on for years before Lupus symptoms show up—commonly diagnosed at age 30 or 40 in people—after the body has had “enough” inflammation to fight for too long. Unfortunately, conventional medicine rarely acknowledges or looks to these underlying factors, and, for that reason, resolves that Lupus has “no known cause,” nor “no known cure.”
No one test can diagnose lupus. A combination of blood and urine tests, signs and symptoms, and physical examination findings leads to the diagnosis.
Blood & Urine Tests
1. Complete blood count.
This test measures the number of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets as well as the amount of hemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells. Results may indicate you have anemia or hypothyroidism, which commonly occurs in lupus. A low white blood cell or platelet count may occur in lupus as well.
- Red blood cells: 4.40–4.90 x 106/µL
- White blood cells: 5.0–8.0 x 103/µL
- Neutrophils: 40–60%
- Lymphocytes: Relative 25–40%
- Monocytes: Relative 4–7%
- Eosinophils: Relative 0–3% Absolute 0.0–0.4 x103/µL
- Hemoglobin: Male: 14–15 g/dL; Female: 13.5–14.5 g/dL
2. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate.
This blood test determines the rate at which red blood cells settle to the bottom of a tube in an hour. A faster than normal rate may indicate a systemic disease, such as lupus. The sedimentation rate isn’t specific for any one disease. It may be elevated if you have lupus, an infection, another inflammatory condition or cancer.
Kidney and liver assessment.
Blood tests can assess how well your kidneys and liver are functioning. Lupus can affect these organs, specific markers include:
- BUN: 13–18 mg/dL
- Creatinine: Male: 0.85–1.1 mg/dL Female: 0.7 – 1.0 mg/dL
- ALT (liver enzymes): Male: 0–25 IU/L Female: 0–23 IU/L
- AST (liver enzymes): Male: 0–26 IU/L Female: 0–20 IU/L
- GGT: Male: 0–29 IU/L Female: 0–21 IU
- Bilirubin, total: 0.1–1.2 mg/dL
An examination of a sample of your urine may show an increased protein level or red blood cells in the urine, which may occur if lupus has affected your kidneys.
4. Antinuclear antibody (ANA) test.
A positive test for the presence of these antibodies — produced by your immune system — indicates a stimulated immune system. However, while most people with lupus have a positive ANA test, most people with a positive ANA do NOT have lupus. If you test positive for ANA, your doctor may advise more-specific antibody testing.
Other Antibody Tests
- Anti-Ro/SSA and anti-LA/SSB
- Anti-U1 RNP
- Antiribosomal P protein
- Anti-CCP and RF
Imaging Tests & Studies
- Chest X-ray.
An image of your chest may show abnormal shadows that suggest fluid or inflammation in your lungs.
An in-depth look at your heart function. This test uses sound waves to produce real-time images of your beating heart. It can check for problems with your valves and other portions of your heart.
- Pulmonary Function Study.
A lung-functioning study, revealing how well lungs are breathing and taking in oxygen. Since lupus can affect the lungs and immune system, shortness of breath, asthma and pneumonia can be side effects.
Since Lupus can harm your organs, like your kidney and liver, in some cases, it’s necessary to test a small sample of organ tissue to determine what the best treatment might be. The sample can be obtained with a needle or through a small incision. Skin biopsy is sometimes performed to confirm a diagnosis of lupus affecting the skin. You need to cure lupus.
According to the Lupus Foundation, approximately 10-15% of people will die prematurely from complications related to Lupus.
However, for those who recognize the root causes of Lupus (and other inflammatory autoimmune diseases)—namely gut health and stress—and take action to address those two things, the prognosis is very good.
Most people with the disease will go on to live a normal life span. However, it is important to cure lupus the right way.
Lupus Conventional Treatment
If Lupus is diagnosed, conventional treatment states there is NO natural Lupus treatments, and instead, typically involves medication, including:
- NSAID’s ( Over-the-counter NSAIDs, such as Aleve, ibuprofen and prescriptions, may be used to treat pain, swelling and fever associated with Lupus.
- Steroids. Prednisone and other types of corticosteroids can counter the inflammation of Lupus.
- Antimalarial drugs. Medications commonly used to treat malaria, such as
hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil), affect the immune system and can help decrease the risk of Lupus flares.
- Immunosuppressants. Drugs that suppress the immune system may be helpful in serious cases of Lupus.
- Biologics. A different type of medication administered with an IV, also reduces lupus symptoms in some people.
Unfortunately, while medications may be helpful suppress the symptoms of Lupus, they do not address the underlying causes of Lupus, nor do they reverse the condition and many come with unwanted side effects including: weight gain, easy bruising, thinning bones (osteoporosis), high blood pressure, diabetes, bleeding, kidney problems, stomach pain, and increased risk of infections. This might not be enough to cure lupus.
Natural Treatment to Cure Lupus
Natural treatment to cure lupus recognizes that autoimmune disease is most often a symptom or result of a deeper underlying problem. That is what is so often missed in conventional paradigm of diagnosis and treatment.
Holistic treatment to cure Lupus involves a 5-step approach:
- Addressing underlying pathologies common in thyroid dysfunction by working with a practitioner to assess for things like: gut dysfunction (parasites, SIBO, yeast), chronic infections, environmental toxic exposure, iron overload, nutrient deficiencies.
- Remove Foods & Stressors that Trigger an Immune Response (or at least 30-60 days remove gluten, dairy, grains, nuts and eggs). Do this to help cure lupus naturally.
- Increase Autoimmune-friendly, nutrient-dense foods through an anti-inflammatory diet (eat wild caught, grass-fed proteins, fresh fruits and veggies and healthy fats)
- Optimize your lifestyle to support healing, including: quality sleep, balanced exercise, limited screen/light exposure, pleasure, play, stress management, social connection. A healthy lifestyle is such a huge factor to cure lupus.
- Use immune-boosting and gut-healing supplementation wisely: Probiotics + prebiotics + immune boosting supplements + medication (if necessary) to support healthy immunity and gut health. These supplements will help you cure lupus.
Will I Need Medication (& Will I Need it Forever?)
There is no one size fits all answer to this question, and this is a question best left to discuss with your doctor, since medication use and disease presentation is unique to each individual. Your doctor will help you cure lupus effectively.
The short answer to “forever” though is: No.
Countless cases of Lupus and other autoimmune diseases have been “treated” with natural lifestyle and immune boosting approaches and experienced remission of symptoms without long term drug use. This gives hope to those who are looking for ways to cure lupus.
While Lupus and other autoimmune diseases are not necessarily defined as “curable” (you may always have the antibodies genetically), they are most certainly remissible—meaning you can send them into “remission” and ward off the symptoms of the active flare of the disease.
The bottom line: Ultimately lifestyle and nutrition are the biggest game-changers when you want to cure lupus.