Autoimmune diseases are terribly misunderstood.  Even in the medical community they are largely just a big question mark branded onto a person.  They don’t know what causes them, they don’t know how to cure them, they don’t always know exactly what you have or why.  There are usually more questions than actual answers.
My own disease is really fun because not only is it relatively rare, about half of the rheumotology medical community denies it even exists.  So, that often means that it is really, REALLY important to be educated as a patient.  You have to be your own best advocate which means you need to be knowledgeable about what is happening to you and treatment options.  And you really have to be able to weed through the bullshit.  Of which there is a lot.
As a housebound young adult, I struggled with the isolation and joined a number of Facebook groups and online forums for people just like me.  And what I found was disappointing to say the least.
I found them to be largely filled with people who self diagnosed via Dr. Google which meant that the advice dispensed was… silly to say the least.  So I decided to compile a list of the things people have told me will CURE my disease.

I give you “Cures for Autoimmune Diseases According to the Internet”

10 Cures for Autoimmune Diseases According to the Internet

 

1. Paleo

I don’t discount paleo.  In fact, I follow it.  It HELPS me. However, I have been told by a number of people that if I was just better about following it and bought exclusively organic everything I would be cured.  The idea being that because I don’t buy organic, grass fed beef is somehow causing my disease?  Right. I’ll get right on that one.

2. Organic Food

See comments on item #1. Apparently, if I ate all organic, I’d be cured.  Did you know that organic food cures nearly everything according to the internet? Including diabetes, cancer, and a variety of other diseases.

3. Taking a walk outside

I LOVE getting this advice.  I’m housebound, can’t drive, can’t even get out of bed sometimes and yet, all I really need to do is take a walk outside guys!! Why didn’t I think of that?! How simple!!!  Just a stroll outside and I’d be cured! The problem with this statement is that A. I walk my dog every morning and yet I’m still sick.  And B. Telling someone like me that a walk outside will cure them is like suggesting a deaf person just needs to listen.

4. Drink More Water

Did you know that not drinking eight or more glasses of water a day is what causes nearly every single disease in the world? Even the bacterial and viral ones! So, if you are unlucky enough to suffer from an autoimmune disease, all you need to do is focus on getting more water and you will feel better.

5. Sleep More

This is fantastic advice for spoonies because we already sleep 90% of the time.  That might be a slight exaggeration, but it takes a lot of energy for your body to be in attack mode all the time, and even more if it is actually actively attacking you.  Trust me, sleep is something we do very well. Naps, siestas, power naps, days in bed, sleeping for days on end.  We do it all very, very well.  And yet, after sleeping for three days straight this week, I am still suffering from an autoimmune disease.  Hmm. I must not be sleeping enough.

6. Take a Multivitamin

Taking a daily vitamin is a fantastic idea.  I think people who are perfectly healthy should still be taking daily vitamins. This day in age, healthy eating is a lot harder to do so why not hedge your bets? I have take a multivitamin just about everyday for most of my adult life.  I still ended up with an autoimmune disease, but please, continue to tell me how I just need better quality ones to cure me.

7. Cod Liver Oil

I really don’t get this one at all. It is FANTASTIC for spoonie health. It is great for inflammation, vitamin d, and a whole host of other things.  But taking my fish oil regularly has yet to change my circumstances.  It is a wonderful idea to take fish oil everyday for everyone, healthy or not, but I’m not sure what is in it that is supposed to cure me.  Really, if anything, too much is going to give you the runs.

8. Cut Processed Food

I half heartedly agree with this.  Yes, cutting processed food helps. Yes, even my rheum has said that it’s ideal. It can absolutely HELP. But cure? I’m not sold on that.

9. Getting More Sunlight

This one is right up there with taking a walk for me.  Sunlight. Yep, if only I got more sunlight I’d be gravy.  I’d be AOK.  I’d be cured! And while it is good to get sunlight, it’s important for spoonies to get sunlight especially, am I cured? I live far enough north that we don’t get the right sun to produce vitamin d for six months of the year.  So that is problem number one.  Number two is that I don’t see how being in the sun is going to improve my swollen joints and for many people being in the sun makes their pain worse.  So not the best advice in the world, nor a great cure.

10. Will Power

I saved this one for last because I find this beyond hysterical.  Like maddeningly hysterical.  I go a tad Mad Hatter when I hear it.  I don’t know that any advice I’ve gotten is as funny to me as this.  Anyone, ANYONE with an autoimmune disorder can tell you that they would kill to not have it.  Will power is not the issue.  When I am laying in bed in pain and unable to walk, I have nearly killed myself to keep trying to walk and do things.  And yet, not once did my pure will to not lay in bed all day make my pain disappear.

So, if you are a spoonies and are looking for cures, this list right here is where it’s at.  According to the internet, these 10 things are guaranteed to cure you.
*I do not discount natural advice. I see a natural path to help with my disorder.  I  believe in the healing power of a truly healthy and nutritionally full diet.  I believe that exercise, diet, and mentality play a massive roll in managing autoimmune diseases.  The more you can fuel your body to be health, the better it can fight what is going on inside you.  I believe that a body in motion stays in motion and when you have autoimmune arthritis.  Movement is so important to not have permanent damage to your joints.  So even when it hurts, you have to move. But I feel it gets taken too far.