Reversing autoimmunity is possible. I did it. Hundreds of my patients have done it. And we all did it in a way that fit our own unique root causes.

The root causes of autoimmune disease are what I call the four corner pieces of the autoimmune puzzle. Given that you are unlike any other human on this earth, you need to think of any chronic health issue you have as a unique puzzle that must be solved. In my book, Solving the Autoimmune Puzzle, I detail how to solve any chronic health issue. Here I will briefly discuss how to get started in solving your puzzle.

When you solve a puzzle, you start with the four corner pieces and then connect them with all of the pieces that create the four sides of the puzzle. The four corners, or root causes, are 1) your unique genetics, 2) your exposure to toxins and your body’s ability to rid itself of those toxins, 3) your digestive health (everyone with autoimmunity has leaky gut), and 4) past trauma and current stress (everyone has a history of trauma of some kind).

One of the reasons my new patients typically feel frustrated with their past efforts to heal is the simple fact that they have only focused on one or two of these root causes at a time. In order to achieve real reversal, all four corners must be dealt with simultaneously, because they are all inter-related and influence each other greatly.

However, for today, I would like to focus on the second root cause in this blog–exposure to toxins and your body’s ability to rid itself of those toxins.

According to Ayurveda, the 5,000-year-old sister science of yoga, we are not just our physical body. In fact, Ayurveda talks about the “pancha koshas” or 5 sheaths, or layers that make up our being. These layers go from the physical body, or the part of you that contains all of your organ systems, DNA, and cells, to your energy body, the part of you that connects your electromagnetic energy field to your nervous system and chakras, to your emotional body, to your mental body, to your spiritual body. The spiritual sheath is the portal through which you connect to the collective unconsciousness of the universe, to bliss, and to the downloads or epiphanies you receive when you are trying to solve a thorny problem.

Just as you must address all four root causes of autoimmunity at once, so must you detox all five layers of your being in order to access that lovely bliss layer. If you are toxic in any of your fields of being, you will not experience the reversal of your disease, nor will you experience consistent joy.

How do you detox all of your layers? I am going to list one tip for detoxing each sheath.

Detoxing your physical body: Given that this is the layer that contains your genetics, I recommend we run a genetic panel as well as a deep nutritional panel to find out how to individualize your detox program and to see what you have on board that needs to be detoxed. We have a special program called “Unzip Your Genes” that you can purchase that will include all you need to know about how to individualize your program.

Detoxing your energetic body: Because this is the layer that contains your connection to your nervous system, I recommend you practice mastering the art of dropping into the parasympathetic zone. This is the opposite of fight or flight. Toning up your parasympathetic nervous system allows you to “rest and digest” and “feed and breed.” In other words, your food will be better absorbed, and your hormones will regain their balance. I recommend mastering the tools in the Stress Busting Tool Kit.

Detoxing your emotional body: The HURT Study (Healing Un-Resolved Trauma) that I conducted in 2013 revealed that any experience of rejection from childhood lodges itself in the body and activates the nervous system into fight, flight, or freeze. From there, as upset children with brains that are not fully formed, we make up a meaning to go with the trauma, create a belief that matches it, and then establish an adaptive behavior in response. My own childhood sexual abuse led me to believe adults in authority couldn’t be trusted, and that I needed to be perfect to survive. My adaptive behavior was perfectionism. I had to heal this meaning, belief, and behavior in order to reverse my rheumatoid arthritis.  I teach you how to build emotional resilience and heal these old meanings and beliefs that limit your possibilities in the You Unbroken Program.

Detoxing your mental body: A teacher of mine many years ago said to me, “if your life remains unchanged, it’s your choice.” That hit home the day I was contemplating the word autoimmune. I realized autoimmune meant I was doing this to myself. My immune system was attacking me and I was at war with myself. I knew there could be no winner if I was in a combative relationship with myself.

One way to release the knot around this barrier is to learn to manifest a different reality. In order to manifest a different reality, you have to manifest a different mind. In other words, you have to change your autoimmune mind-set to a vitality mind-set. As I have learned to manifest the life I want to live, I have realized there is one essential rule that you must commit to completely. Being committed to non-commitment is where unsuccessful people hang out. Here is the #1 thing you need to incorporate into your daily routine and commit to completely:

Speak your vision and goal for your health aloud to yourself, to your reflection in the mirror, to God, and to people who are important to you. Speak it clearly, speak it with authority, and speak it often. Verbalize your vision as often as you can in each waking hour of your day. Ayurveda says that what’s in the mind crystalizes in the body. Make sure you are aware of what’s in your mind. Pay attention to your self-talk. This works both ways. If you are verbalizing your victim story or the places in your life that you are frustrated with, those will continue to manifest. Be vigilant, be verbal, and be vulnerable. Do not be afraid or ashamed of perceived failures. These are rest stops on your way to victory.

Detoxing your spiritual body: One of the barriers I see in patients who are not successful in reversing their autoimmune disease completely is their spiritual beliefs surrounding health and healing. They identify themselves as their diagnosis and often feel betrayed by their body, life, God, or the medical establishment at large. They do not see their illness as the catalyst for the expansion of consciousness it can be. They see their pain and suffering as something being done to them rather than for them.

Take responsibility for your life, your health, and your reality. Remember, autoimmune means you are doing this to yourself. Be willing to self-confront the places in your life that are not health promoting. If you have a gene that requires you to abstain from alcohol, then commit to it and do it. Become a collaborative partner with yourself. If you fight with your genetics and your biochemistry, you cannot win. Becoming hopeless because your body is asking you to stop eating gluten, dairy, caffeine, soy, processed foods, and sugar only perpetuates your disease. Commit to collaboration with all of your layers. Commit completely. Commit with curiosity about how your systems feel with lifestyle changes. Commit without the need to feel victimized. This works…I know. I also know that it’s not an overnight process, so be patient with yourself as you go about manifesting a body that is no longer attacking itself. You will find that the skills you learn on your journey to health will serve as tools for your own spiritual evolution.

Ayurveda says we are “microcosms of the macrocosm.” With that in mind, we must be mindful of our environment and the planet we live on. Detoxing your immediate environment in terms of your household cleaners, self-care essentials, and beauty products will go a long way to maintaining the positive shifts you make as you begin reversing your inflammation, hormone imbalance, gut health, skin issues, mood troubles, brain fog, and poor sleep quality. I have written a manual that I want to offer as my gift to you. It’s filled with recipes that you can make at home using organic, pure, and natural ingredients. Ayurveda says that what you put on your skin enters your system just as if you had eaten it. So each recipe contains only edible products (if it’s meant to go on your skin; please do not eat the homemade laundry detergent J). You can download your free autoimmune home detox book here.

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Dr. Keesha Ewers is a board certified Functional and Ayurvedic medical practitioner, as well as Doctor of Sexology, host and founder of The Woman’s Vitality Summit, and founder of a new branch of medicine called Functional Sexology. Click here to learn more about her Integrative Medicine Health Coach Certification Program.