Root cause. This term is often commonly associated with integrative healthcare. The concept is that patients need to find the root of their issues and what is causing the body to attack itself, versus the standard band-aid approach of diagnosis, and prescription with minimal focus on lifestyle, food, digestion, infections, and stress. The root cause is an essential component of healing. However, it can be maddening.
For years, the search for my root cause consumed me. If I could find the bug, virus, parasite, food intolerance, toxic/chemical exposure, or dirty gene, I could heal. I researched and read everything I could on Hashimoto’s and how to find my “root cause.” I drove myself crazy researching test options, many of which are not covered by insurance, and weighed the pros/cons of where to invest. I convinced myself that if I could find the ONE thing that was wreaking havoc on my system, I could treat it, and move on with my life.
Not so simple.
I live in a rural part of the world, so finding doctors to accommodate the tests I needed was challenging. Traveling to see specialists and integrative doctors were expensive and time-consuming. I frantically read reviews, blogs, articles, interviews, and talked to former patients, all to decide who was worth my time and effort. The process depleted my energy and was a huge stressor. My mind and body were always weighed down with thoughts of my next step and process. I would jump from protocol to protocol, and if it didn’t work, I shifted to the next focus. It became a cycle.
Protocols can be necessary and helpful. They can rid our bodies of infections, promote detox, and support significant health shifts. However, it is imperative not to have tunnel vision. Don’t get so immersed in trying to find the source, that your mind becomes inundated with the process. Being fixated feeds stress, fear, and anxiety. I have witnessed many people struggle with this piece of their journey. Remember, each piece you uncover is part of your puzzle. It may not be one thing. Fixating on what is “wrong” doesn’t promote healing. Exercise your power. Think about how brilliant your body is at fixing itself and work at providing it with an environment feeding that purpose.
Autoimmunity is multi-faceted. It is essential to balance your efforts and be cautious of a stringent focus on one component. Stress-management, nutrition, lifestyle, relationships, work, family, joy, self-care, and spirituality are other essential components that can support the supplemental and medicinal elements of treatment. Acknowledge yourself as a whole-being with many systems that need to work together to recover. Give your body a chance to breathe, relax, and heal.
It’s a journey.