Autoimmune diseases occur when our own body’s immune system attacks
our own body’s tissues, for reasons which are not immediately clear.
The list of autoimmune diseases is as long as the list of organs in the
body – and longer, since organs may respond to attack in many different
ways. Diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, Lupus, hepatitis, Hashimoto’s
thyroiditis, Graves disease, cardiomyopathy, psoriasis, vitiligo, multiple
sclerosis… The list goes on and on. One common denominator may
be leaky gut – an inflamed GI tract can allow larger food molecules
to leak out into the circulation. Many of these molecules (particularly
gluten, a break-down product of wheat) may look very similar to our own
tissues. So the antibodies we make to the foreign food molecules start
to attack our own organs. And voilà – autoimmune disease.