Lupus symptoms can be managed by alternative medicine and the immune system can be strengthened by these medicines too. You may find the term ‘alternative’ unfamiliar but you might actually be shocked to realize that you know the majority of these alternative treatments. Alternative treatments are beneficial and mostly used alongside the traditional ones. You can call these alternative treatments complementary treatments because they complement the traditional ones.
According to studies, individuals normally opt for different natural treatments and complementary medicines to manage their symptoms. These include herbs and homeopathy, traditional Chinese therapies like tai chi and acupuncture, yoga and ayurveda, chiropractic care, massage therapy, spirituality, meditation, and naturopathy.
Alternative Treatments and Supplements for Lupus
According to studies, a diet that is healthy and consists of unprocessed foods is crucial in lupus management. Such a diet manages inflammation that is a result of poor gut health. It lowers the chances of acquiring problems like heart disorders, aids in accumulating energy and strength, and minimizes the side effects of medications.
Eat the following foods if you suffer from lupus:
- Foods that are organic and not processed: This minimizes the consumption of artificial additives, pesticides, or toxins.
- Vegetables that are raw: These minimize inflammation, intensify the level of alkalinity in the body, and enhance the process of digestion.
- Wild fish: This minimizes inflammation because of the omega-3 fats they contain; they reduce the chances of acquiring heart disorders and pain. These include mackerel, salmon, tuna, herring, halibut and sardines
- Fruits and vegetables: These include asparagus, berries, leafy greens, onions, avocados, and garlic. They contain vitamin C, potassium, fiber, magnesium, and selenium to prevent drastic damage, minimize tiredness, and repair potential joint damage.
- Bone soup: This minimizes inflammatory and autoimmune symptoms resulting from lupus. Take between 8 to 16 ounces of this soup every day.
Skin dryness and irritation caused by lupus can be solved by eating some foods. These foods moisturize your skin from the inside to the outside and include:
- Wild-caught fish
- Raw milk
- Nuts and seeds such as almonds, flax, chia, and walnuts
- Olive oil and coconut oil
- Melon and cucumbers
- Taking a lot of water and green or herbal tea
Flaxseed: It has a fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid which helps to minimize inflammation in your body. According to studies, with the consumption of flaxseed, there is improvement of kidney function in individuals with lupus who suffer from kidney complications like nephritis. The side effects of flaxseed are bloating and abdominal pain.
Fish oil: Individuals with lupus may benefit from fish oil supplements, which have omega-3 fatty acids. The side effects of these supplements are a fishy taste, belching, and nausea.
Vitamin A: This is an antioxidant found abundantly in liver, whole milk, and certain fortified foods. Beta-carotene contained in carrots and other colored vegetables are a pro-vitamin that is changed to Vitamin A by the body. Vitamin A guards your body against harmful substances which can destroy the DNA and result in cancer and other ailments. It also contains anti-inflammatory characteristics.
Insufficient vitamin A in the body can lead to inflammation of the lungs, intestines, and skin. Using Vitamin A supplements minimizes the inflammation that leads to problems such as acne, inflammatory bowel disorder, and lung disease.
Vitamin D: Vitamin D supplements are beneficial to individuals suffering from lupus. Certain destructive responses of the immune system thought to lead to lupus can be destroyed with high doses of this vitamin.
Vitamin E: There are various types of this vitamin supplement. The alpha-tocopherol form of this vitamin keeps away heart disorder by slowing down the discharge of inflammatory substances that destroy the heart. This form of vitamin E may also ease inflammation of the lungs that causes allergies. This hasn’t been proven yet since this research was done on animals and has not been tested on humans to see the response.
Turmeric or Curcumin: According to studies, curcumin has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial effects. This spice has been widely used for ages as a medication. It can ease pain and assist in clearing certain lupus symptoms. Avoid consuming it high doses for a prolonged time because it can cause nausea, diarrhea, and indigestion. Individuals who are pregnant, diabetic, breastfeeding, or have gallbladder complications should not consume turmeric.
Boswellia Extract: Frankincense is the active substance found in Boswellia extract. It functions as a strong anti-inflammatory. The reason for this is that it is able to minimize the body’s generation of leulotrienes which result in inflammation. This spice can be effectively used to treat lupus, osteoarthritis, RA (rheumatoid arthritis), fibromyalgia, and Crohn’s disorder. It also battles gastrointestinal inflammation. The side effects of Boswellia extract are acid reflux, stomachache, and diarrhea.
Ginkgo: This an herb that has been used for ages in Chinese traditional medicine. There are high doses of terpenoids and flavonoids in this herb. These extracts are antioxidants and improve the flow of blood which assists in alleviating a lupus-related condition known as Raynaus’s phenomenon.
Pine Bark: The extract of pine bark, also known as pinuspinaster, helps in improving symptoms of lupus and reducing the inflammation of lupus. A lot of research is still ongoing on this.
Myers cocktail: This is a blend of minerals, vitamins, alkaline, and detoxifiers which are administered to the bloodstream intravenously. Since it does not go through the digestive process, its absorption is very fast. It comprises of 7 B-vitamins, calcium, bi-carbonate, magnesium, vitamin C, glutathione, and selenium. It can be used for chronic and acute conditions, and others use it to keep off diseases and maintain most favorable wellness. It is used in treating autoimmune disorders like lupus, allergies, Lyme disorder, fibromyalgia, and celiac disorder. It is not FDA-approved and insurance does not cover it.
Evening primrose oil: This alleviates RA and treats inflammation.
Reduction of stress: According to research, emotional and psychological stress can cause lupus or cause a lupus flare-up by raising inflammatory reactions. Systemic lupus is unpredictable and leads to alterations in the central nervous system, which can result in extreme anxiety and psychological distress.
Different individuals react differently to different stress relievers so you might need to experiment first. Yoga, meditation, and acupuncture are treatment options that are effective and have many benefits to the mind and body. You can also relieve stress by breathing techniques, spending time in nature, exercising, reading, maintaining a journal, praying, using essential oils, visiting a therapist, and joining a support group.
Massage: Individuals with muscle pains and chronic joint pains as a result of lupus can find massage very therapeutic and beneficial. Stiffness of joints can be relieved by massage, which can also lead to the improvement of circulation. If your lupus is cutaneous or if your skin is affected by lupus, keep off massage that is intense since it can cause bleeding or bruising under the skin. If you decide to treat your lupus through professional massage, ensure that you go to a skilled and legal message therapist, especially one who knows about lupus.
Safety measures when choosing alternative treatments for lupus
You can collaborate with your health care provider and go through all the alternative therapies and come up with the appropriate treatment for your lupus. Also, tell your doctor if you are currently using any supplements so that any medicines that your doctor will prescribe will turn out effective.