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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Finding Cause and Cure for RA (cont.) - Bikram Yoga ?


Back Ground: What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) is an autoimmune disease where a person's immune system attacks itself, specifically the synovial fluid in the joints, causing inflammation, stiffness, and in most severe cases immobility and deformity.

What is the Cause?

Research shows that the cause of RA is UNKNOWN.  However, I've done my own personal research, and have compared my findings to my own personal life events, environment, and triggers.  This is my own conclusion.

I believe RA roots from trauma. When we experience trauma, our nervous system automatically responds and tells our brain & body to either 1. Fight, 2. Flight or 3. Freeze. (further reading: Waking the Tiger, by Peter Levine, Phd)  However, unlike animals who shake out the trauma, most humans are left still traumatized inside. We can continue our life as if nothing happened, yet easily find ourselves living in a hyperactive life full of stress as if it is our norm (our own familiarity). This hyperactivity speeds up our immune system with it, combined with the excess stress, our immune system begins to attack itself. It also then begins to attack familiar objects as if they were foreign and can manifest itself into "allergies". 

A book titled "When the Body Says No" by Gabor Mate, suggests that internalized stress and repressed feelings, will manifest itself into illnesses, one of so called mentioned, Rheumatoid Arthritis. See: Pychoneuroimmunology Post

Steps to Healing...

I believe the key to healing involves integrating our mind, body and spirit, allowing God to breath "peace and stillness" into every living cell that still shouts  "HELP".   In addition, loving ourselves enough to eat healthy, sleep at least 8 hours a day, drink 6-8 glasses of water and recognizing our own limits. 

Since I've discovered my own allergies "gluten & eggs", (see: Natural Path Allergy Test Report Post), diet plays a huge roll, eliminating foods that causes further inflammation.

Finally I have been doing bikram yoga once a week for the past 5 weeks. In the heat, as my heart races, I am at the same time, STILL, telling myself that I am safe. My body becomes stronger, my joints more flexible and mobile, and best of all, my mind at peace.  During the savasna pose (rests), I lie in stillness, thanking God and myself for every breath I take.

It's been 5 weeks since I've taken my enbrel injection. Do I flare? .... Sure I do. I notice joint stiffness when I burn the candles on both ends, staying up late night and waking early to care for my toddler and my 5 month old baby. However, I feel better after a yoga class, and the joints that hurt the night before are better the next day.

I will keep you posted and if truly Bikram Yoga will help enough that I can be drug free and since I still breast feed, my baby drug free too. 


  1. I love to read other people's stories with RA. I am currently taking meds and will do until we decide to have a family. But that is fast approaching and I scare myself silly worrying about how it will affect my RA, or how RA will affect my life.

    But whenever I hear, or read about someone's 'steps to healing' as you say, it gives me hope for the future.

    1. Yes certainly there is hope :) keep me posted on your growing family - its almost a miracle that our RA goes into remission during pregnancy as if knowing not to attach our baby...

  2. "I believe the key to healing involves integrating our mind, body and spirit"

    I totally agree with the above sentence. When people are in pain, I don't blame them for using tons of medications, but these types of long term solutions make more sense to me.

    Another very similar solution is this book:

    1. Thanks for sharing Brian and I will check your article out - As for meds, they are a temp solution and a quick fix, with long term consequences; yet I am also so thankful I have my meds handy when i really can't deal with the RA symptoms..

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  4. Hi, Arthiritis, its a critical disease as we also supply a wide range of natural medicines at big level to get rid off from arthritis. Thanks for sharing.

  5. I want to tell you that I quit using Enbrel in December of 2011. I have no erosions on hands/feet per x-ray. My anti-ccp was over 500 so super high. It is now October 2013 and my RA is JUST NOW RETURNING. During the almost two year RA vacation, two fingers remained stiff, but only two. I took Mobic as needed. I eliminated about 70% of all processed foods and sodas (I was a dt. coke junkie) Now, with the RA returning, I believe that the Enbrel had residual effects that lasted a very long time and by eating a less inflammatory diet, I helped prolong the situation. My next doctor appointment isn't until February, so between now and then (unless I hurt badly), I have to decide to either go back on Enbrel or choose something like sulfasalazine. I do not believe Enbrel has an increased risk of cancer, by the way. All my research points to RA being the culprit more than a DMARD...but of course, when the immune system is suppressed to much, cancer can thrive. One day, I envision a balance between the right amount of a biologic and how often it's needed. We need customized biologics and not "one size fits all". Best of luck to you!

  6. hi, i searched about Symptoms of RA and i found that RA and OA are similar and i found at this page that OA has less stiffness duration in the morning can you tell me more about deference between RA and OA

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