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Published: January 18, 2023

Over 80 different autoimmune diseases are known, and none have a cure. However, treating the symptoms makes the autoimmune disease more manageable and allows people to continue living unencumbered. Autoimmune diseases require consistent monitoring and treatment. Finding simple and sustainable ways to handle symptoms provides the best chance of living with the disease. 

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers many options to mitigate and manage symptoms while living with certain conditions, including autoimmune diseases. Techniques, including acupuncture and herbal formulas, can provide great relief when symptoms feel overwhelming. 

Autoimmune Disease Details

Autoimmune diseases involve the body’s immune system mistakenly attacking healthy cells, tissues, and organs. These diseases affect many different body parts and cause a variety of symptoms. Due to the lack of a cure, managing symptoms is the sole strategy for combatting autoimmune diseases.

Some of the most common examples of autoimmune diseases include:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis: causes inflammation in the joints and surrounding tissues, leading to pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving.
  • Lupus: can affect different body parts, including the skin, joints, kidneys, brain, and other organs. Symptoms can include a butterfly-shaped rash on the face, joint pain, and kidney problems.
  • Multiple sclerosis: affects the central nervous system and can cause symptoms such as muscle weakness, difficulty with coordination and balance, and vision problems.
  • Type 1 diabetes: occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin, a hormone needed to control blood sugar levels.

When managing symptoms, TCM looks at the individual as a whole and aims to balance the body and mind. The goal is to strengthen the body’s immune system and prevent symptoms rather than suppress them. Utilizing a strategy embracing TCM practices and Western medicine can allow some people to thrive despite an autoimmune disease diagnosis.

Chinese Herb Options

Autoimmune diseases can be challenging to diagnose and handle. Many people find the attempt to treat symptoms with immune suppressors unpleasant and ineffective. Utilizing TCM and Chinese herbs to help rebalance the body can bring people relief from long-suffered symptoms. 

In TCM, the immune system is integral to the body’s balance and harmony. It is closely connected to the body’s qi, or vital energy, and the balance of qi is essential for maintaining good health. When qi flows smoothly, the immune system functions properly and protects the body against disease. However, when qi becomes blocked or imbalanced, impacting the body’s energy stores, the immune system can become weakened and more susceptible to illness. People can improve their immune systems by using specific herbal formulas.

Some commonly used herbs in TCM that can help with autoimmune disease symptoms include:

  • Turmeric: This is an excellent herb to use when dealing with inflammation, a consistent problem with many autoimmune diseases. It also has antioxidant properties, which means it helps protect cells against damage caused by free radicals, molecules that can cause damage to cells. 
  • Sarsaparilla: This herb is connected to lower inflammation and helps purify the blood. Both of these benefits can help with autoimmune disease symptoms and help manage pain, stiffness, and fatigue from inflammation. 
  • Liu Wei Di Huang Wan: This herb is used when there is a yin deficiency in the kidneys. This can be established due to symptoms and recommended by a practitioner. A trained practitioner can assess symptoms and come up with options to help regain balance in the body and boost energy stores. 

Autoimmune Disease and Extra TCM Support

Acupuncture is a key component of TCM and is often used to help treat autoimmune diseases. Research has shown that acupuncture can help to reduce inflammation and regulate the immune system. This can reduce symptoms such as pain, fatigue, and stiffness, all commonly associated with autoimmune diseases. TCM also emphasizes the importance of lifestyle changes, including a healthy diet, regular exercise, and stress management techniques. 

Dual Treatment 

One of the most important things when dealing with an autoimmune disease is listening to the body and noting any symptoms that could be associated with the disease. Looking at how the entire body is impacted and treating each person as an individual allows TCM to help alleviate specific ailments. 

Pairing Western medicine with TCM can provide positive results for those dealing with autoimmune diseases. Working to balance the immune system instead of exclusively suppressing it may provide relief to individuals who did not function well using only Western medicine techniques. 

Options like herbal formulas offer a reliable and easy way to help manage symptoms. Acquiring pure and well-sourced formulas is crucial for receiving positive impacts. It’s also crucial to visit a licensed Chinese herbal practitioner who can provide customized, high-quality herbal formulas. 

KPC offers the highest-quality herbs and a wide range of options to help you feel better. As the world supplier of herbs, you’re bound to find what you’re looking for with KPC’s catalog. For help finding a quality practitioner, click here.

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*Please note: These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This article is not intended to suggest specific treatments for patients or that any supplements mentioned prevent or cure diseases or problems. Before taking any herbs, all patients should discuss their options with a licensed practitioner, including any other medications the patient is currently taking, as there may be contraindications between pharmaceuticals and herbs.

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