Sometimes, however, you do have to integrate conventional pharmaceuticals (CRx) with your functional medicine (FxM) approach. This can be in the face of a flare, to get through that flare, or on-going, if that’s a decision you and your functional medicine practitioner and specialist make together with you. That can happen – autoimmunity is an organic and dynamic process and not all things are within our control throughout the continuum of our lives, despite our best efforts. It is important to give it your best try and, when you do, to remember that you’re still gaining over what would be happening without those healing-based interventions. Sometimes we go through a flare and then find we’re motivated to double down on our best efforts – now willing or able to integrate a component we weren’t before; sometimes stuff happens. You’ll want to make a considered decision.
Testimony and guidance of a leader in the healing-based approach
The story of one woman’s journey is in Eileen Baird, a leader in the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diet and the talent behind PhoenixHelix. She chose the AIP to manage her Rheumatoid Arthritis. By all accounts through her blog, she has no regrets whatever about the diet and lifestyle she chose, and the improvements it made to her health. She got a good 4-year run, she says, on diet and lifestyle alone, and then found that she did need complementary medication to support her diet. That decision does not negate that her health is better for having chosen the healing-based mechanisms that she did.
As Eileen said on March 11, 2017, to one of the respondents to her post:
“It’s a tough crossroads to face, but as you can see by all the comments above yours, you’re not alone! it was a good decision for me, but you need to be patient with the process. It takes time to determine if a medication is working, and it’s common to need to try a few before finding the best one (or the best combination) for you. As for side effects, the right medication for you should have side effects that are very manageable. If you experience uncomfortable side effects, work with your doctor on changing your prescription. Doing AIP first establishes a great foundation for this process. You’re used to being patient, tuning into your body, and making adjustments as needed. You’ve already reduced a lot of your inflammation at its root, giving the medication a better chance to work. And eating a cleaner diet is easier on your organs (especially your liver), so it (and your other organs) are in a better position to process the medication successfully. I recommend continuing with the AIP as you start your medication journey. Wishing you remission, and gentle hugs coming your way.”
An individualized process of progress
We need to respect that the journey through autoimmunity is an individual one. We seek progress, not perfection, as well. The road leads to a brighter horizon each and every day, as scientists, physicians, and healing-based practitioners gain much-needed insight into how our bodies work, how what we put in them affects us, and what we can do about it.
Read more about Eileen’s journey, her experience and advice on personalizing the journey, here.