Acupuncture Effective Treatment for Autoimmune Diseases

Millions of people suffer from the more than 80 different autoimmune diseases such as lupus, diabetes type I, rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis. Autoimmune diseases arise from an overactive immune response of the body against substances and tissues normally present in the body. In other words, the body actually attacks its own cells. The immune system mistakes some part of the body as a pathogen and attacks it. This may be restricted to certain organs or involve a particular tissue in different places.  The treatment of autoimmune diseases is typically with immunosupression medication which decreases the immune response.

There are also much more natural ways to treat these complicated diseases. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs have been used for thousands of years and are now being acknowledged as effective treatments for many common ailments. For example, Crohn's disease is an autoimmune disease which involves chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract.

In a German study, 51 patients with mild to moderately active Crohn's disease had a decrease in disease activity after receiving 10 sessions of acupuncture. Study members also showed an improvement in general well-being and reported an improvement in quality of life.

Read more: Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine are making the headlines. See news, articles, research and studies here!

There are also foods that have been shown to improve the symptoms of autoimmune diseases. Besides eating a vegan diet, here are a few specifics:

Tea: Both green and black tea contain the flavenoids, catechins and theaflavins, which are beneficial in autoimmune disease.

Apples: Apples, contain the flavanoid, quercetin that can reduce allergic reactions and decrease inflammation. Quercetin occurs naturally in certain foods, such as apples (with the skin on), berries, red grapes, red onions, capers, and black tea.

Carrots: Carotenoids are a family of plant pigments that include beta-carotene. A lack of carotenoids in the diet is thought to promote inflammation. Good sources of carotenoids include apricots, carrots, pumpkin, sweet potato, spinach, kale, butternut squash, and collard greens.

Ginger: Recent studies show that ginger reduces inflammation by inhibiting prostaglandin and suppresses the immune system's production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, reducing disease severity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

Omega-3: Omega-3 essential fatty acids can counter the formation of chemicals that cause inflammation. Good natural sources include flaxseed oil and salmon.

Fiber: A healthy and active colon can decrease food sensitivity, which, in turn, can lighten the burden on your immune system. For maximum autoimmune health, increase the fiber in your diet.

For more information on how a vegan diet can treat autoimmune diseases, check out the book The China Study by T. Colin Campbell and his son Thomas M. Campbell