Autoimmune disease

Spotlight: Rheumatoid Arthritis

Spotlight: Rheumatoid Arthritis Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most common type of inflammatory arthritis. It is an autoimmune disease, which means the body has lost the ability to recognise its own cells as ‘self’.  With RA, immune cells produce autoantibodies that attack the synovium in the joints.  The inflammation that results from this thickens the synovium, which goes on to destroy the cartilage and the bone within the joint. Whatever the trigger is, both the innate and adaptive immune systems respond quickly…

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Spotlight: Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE/Lupus)

Spotlight: Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE/Lupus) Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), also commonly called lupus, is a chronic, systemic, autoimmune inflammatory condition, mainly affecting connective tissue. Lupus impacts multiple organ systems including the skin, muscles, joints, lungs, kidneys, central nervous system and blood. The hallmarks of lupus are the production of large numbers of autoantibodies and circulating immune complexes that are deposited in various tissues and organs around the body. Key Symptoms Because lupus is a multi-system disease, individuals can present with…

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Spotlight: Hashimoto’s Disease

This is the first mini-blog in a series on autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. The goal is to highlight the causes, risk factors and symptoms, and discuss common approaches to treatment and how Naturopathic care can support patients to alleviate symptoms and improve their quality of life.  Hashimoto’s Disease Hashimoto’s disease is the most common type of thyroid condition in Australia. It is also the number one autoimmune disease I see in clinic, with patients who have been diagnosed or who…

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How to break a bad habit (and make a new one) and get what you want.

How to break a bad habit (and make a new one) and get what you want. It’s January. The holidays are over, there are no more Christmas leftovers in the fridge (including my famous pudding – thank goodness, I was starting to look like one!) and we have welcomed in the new year with friends or family and possibly a few too many alcoholic beverages (no judgement here). For many of us we are back to work and school is…

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What stress is actually doing to your body

What stress is actually doing to your body. I have three patients who have been on my mind a lot lately. All three have quite different stories, experiences and symptoms, but they all share one common thread that is impacting on their ability to really thrive – and that common denominator is STRESS. Let’s face it, 2020 has been stressful. I saw a Facebook post recently that said “2020 is what happens when you mix your tarot deck with cards…

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Understanding Endometriosis

Understanding Endometriosis I am seeing more and more women with endometriosis in clinic. Statistically it is thought to affect 1 in 10 women, however many of those women remain undiagnosed (read my blog on living with an invisible illness here). Diagnosis can be challenging. Firstly, because doctors don’t always understand the degree of pain that women experience. Sadly I see many of my patients dismissed from the doctor’s office, leaving them feeling deflated, misunderstood and unheard. A diagnosis can only…

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Are you living with an invisible illness?

Are you living with an invisible illness? I see a lot of patients in clinic who have been let down by standard medical care because they don’t fit neatly into a box for a diagnosis.  Patients present with a list of symptoms, sometimes diverse and apparently unlinked, and often their blood work will come back as “normal.”  So the doctor tells them they are fine (or worse – that it’s all in their head) and sends them home.  Except they…

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Thyroid Madness

Thyroid Madness Every second person who comes into my clinic has some sort of thyroid dysfunction (or so it seems – I might be exaggerating slightly, but you get my point).  Sadly, most of these women (it does affect men too) have been dismissed by a GP as ‘fine’ when they know they are ‘not fine’.  Why?  Because standard thyroid testing gives an incomplete picture of thyroid health and honestly, in most cases, it’s completely inaccurate.  I call it “thyroid…

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