Lupus affects an estimated five million people globally. The symptoms of this autoimmune disease can range from mild to severe with organ failure being the common cause of mortality. Lupus is a chronic condition. It cannot be cured, but it can be treated and managed.
Before looking at natural methods of treatment you can try, here is an important reminder: there is no evidence that herbal supplements treat lupus. There are so many supplements in the market that promise to treat lupus. According to Dr. Ronenn Roubenoff, the Food and Drug Administration in the United States have not regulated these supplements. They may contain ingredients that do more harm than good. Always check with your physician before taking any of them.
There are several ways to treat lupus naturally. Natural treatment in this context is managing the environmental factors that trigger lupus “flares.” As of this writing, the only mechanistic evidence is available on their links to lupus; however, trying them out improves your overall health, if not prevent lupus flares entirely. Here are some things you can avoid:
- Exposure to cigarette smoke. In Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) and Cutaneous Lupus erythematosus (CLE), cigarette smoke contains harmful substances like tar, carbon monoxide, nicotine, etc. that cause oxidative stress which leads to the body finding it challenging to detoxify.
- Exposure to UV light. Skin lesions of CLE patients often appear in sun-exposed parts of the skin. Wear sunscreen and sun protective clothing both in the natural and artificial light.
- Alcohol. Don’t consume alcohol as it alters cellular responses that are necessary for fighting inflammation.
- Solvents and pesticides. Pesticides and specific household items like nail polish remover, paints, and perfumes can also cause imbalance and oxidative stress.
- Exposure to silica and silicates. Agriculture and construction-based jobs are exposed to crystalline silica that inhibits regulatory T cells necessary and increases oxidative stress.
- Exposure to heavy metals. Mercury is linked to systemic immunity which is another cause of inflammation.
- Stress. There is anecdotal evidence suggesting that stress can induce lupus flares. Try out some stress and relaxation techniques to keep you centered.
There are also several herbal supplements available that you can such as Omega 3/Fish oil, turmeric, Vitamin D supplements, DHEA, MSM, and green superfood supplement.
Some of these things are occupational hazards which can be very difficult to avoid. Other treatments are still available in managing the illness. While work is still ongoing in the fight against lupus, we should actively do what we can in minimizing risks.