Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Living with Lupus: Natural Cures and Remedies to Reduce Symptoms

There are natural cures for Lupus that do not involve the use of pharmaceutical drugs. They involve restoring the biochemical balance of the body, and making dietary and lifestyle changes designed to improve one's general health.

What is LUPUS?
Lupus is a chronic, inflammatory, autoimmune disease that affects the blood and connective tissue.

There are two main types of lupus. Discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE) affects the exposed areas of the skin and sometimes the joints. Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is more serious and potentially fatal condition that affects the body`s organs in addition to the blood and connective tissues.

Lupus symptoms vary according to the severity of the illness and the affected organs. SLE can strike abruptly, accompanied by fever and mimicking an acute infection. But it can also occur slowly over months, even years, exhibiting only sporadic episodes of fever and fatigue. Most people with SLE complain of pain in various joints that mimics arthritis, or in children it simulates growing pains. In adults, there is often a history of growing pains. Over time, muscular contraction may deform the joints.

Many patients also manifest rashes on their face, neck, upper chest, and/or elbows. In DLE, the rash starts as red, circular thickened areas that leave scars, most often affecting the face and scalp, and can also cause permanent hair loss. In SLE, there is a characteristic "butterfly-shaped" rash that occurs on the cheeks and over the bridge of the nose. Rashes in SLE patients do not scar and do not cause permanent hair loss.

Ulcers on mucous membranes such as the mouth and nose are also common. Swelling of the hands and fingers can occur, as well, as can sensitivity to light, kidney disorders, pleurisy (inflammation of lining of the lungs), pericarditis (inflammation of the membrane surrounding the heart), iron deficiency, anemia, and high blood pressure. Swelling of lymph nodes is also common, especially in children.

Suggested Alternative Treatments for Lupus
Allopathic medicine does not consider there to be a cure for lupus, but many alternative practitioners report "cures" by eliminating causes and treating the body as a whole, beginning with adjustments in diet and appropriate supplementation.

It is suggested that people with lupus eat frequent smaller meals and limit cow's milk and beef products. Increase vegetables and consume fish several times a week (omega-3 fatty acids). Alfalfa sprouts or tablets which contain L-canavanine sulfate and should be avoided, along with L-tryptophan which may produce substances in the body that may promote the autoimmune process. Adhere to a whole foods diet. You may also want to discuss a fasting program with your doctor as an avenue to establish a complete cleansing and remission.

Herbs and supplements such as cat's claw, black walnut, omega-3 fatty acids and flaxseed oil are purported to lessen inflammation. Colloidal silver may be used as an antibacterial, antifungal, and antiarthritic remedy. Echinacea should be avoided, or used with caution. Be sure you are getting the proper amount for your condition by discussing these options with a professional health care provider. Note: "Natural" does not always mean "safe." Medicinal herbs should be taken with caution, especially if you're on prescription drugs.

In addition to diet and supplements, you may want to consider acupuncture as this procedure is individualized towards each person's unique profile and specific health conditions.

Since lupus can flare up during times of extreme stress, regular exercise and stress management are very important.

For more information and support for Lupus:

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