When I first started listening to this interview with Dr. Amy Myers and heard how healthy she was living, I was asking myself “how could she have been affected by autoimmune diseases?”. This was eye-opening for me. There are plenty of things we do today that we think are safe and healthy, but really they cause inflammation and stress in the body. Amy has found what many of these are and is helping her patients cure themselves of autoimmune diseases.
Watch the video of the interview below and read my notes from the interview below that.
Why Western Medicine Gets Autoimmune Diseases All Wrong
My Notes from “Why Western Medicine Gets Autoimmune Diseases All Wrong”
- When Dr. Amy Myers was a child (in the 1970’s), her mother taught yoga and was an artist. Her father was a professor of Asian studies.
- Her family ate all the “good” foods and even had their own vegetable garden
- She never got sick, but if she did she took Chinese herbs
- At 14 she became a vegetarian to get even healthier!
- At 17 she learned how to do transcendental meditation
- After college she joined the Peace Corps, went to Paraguay, taught cooking and farming, grew Stevia and exported it to Japan
- Then she decided to go into medicine and become an M.D.
- Her mother got pancreatic cancer and passed away in 4 months (same year her great grandmother died at 103)
- So she realised you can “do all the right things” and stuff can still happen to you
- She went to conventional medical school and started getting panic attacks in the second year, was losing weight, had a tremor and insomnia
- The doctor said it was just stress
- Amy knew it wasn’t stress and demanded a full work up
- It turned out she had Graves disease which is an autoimmune disease of the thyroid – it was over active
- She was given three options
- take a medication that is fairly toxic
- to have the thyroid ablated (blown up)
- to have the thyroid surgically removed
- She went back to her roots and tried Chinese medicine, herbs and fermented foods
- She didn’t get any better so she decide to try the medication
- A month later she was feeling even worse, she had toxic hepatitis and her liver was starting to fail from the medication
- She had to go on bed rest and then decide between the ablation or surgical removal of the thyroid
- Without any other options she took the ablation
- She says “that’s probably the only regret I have in my life”
- She finished medical school and kept looking for answers to problems like hers
- Dr. Mark Hyman inspired her to follow the path of functional medicine
- She opened a clinic in functional medicine
- Conventional medicine solved the problem of the over active thyroid, but didn’t get to the root of why it happened in the first place
- She has now helped reverse Graves disease in many of her patients
- Medical doctors are not trained to think of the body as a whole, they are trained to think about symptoms
- We’re brainwashed by commercials about pills to think it’s normal to have symptoms
- She had a patient diagnosed with Graves and she wanted to change his diet, she told him she’d like to get him off gluten and dairy and maybe grains and legumes – he looked at her and said “well that seems really extreme|”
- How did we get to the point where taking pills that can kill your liver, or having your thyroid ablated, or having your thyroid surgically removed is considered ok, but changing your diet is considered extreme?
- Most of what she uses she has learnt after medical school in the institute of functional medicine
- It takes about 18 years on average to get something new that we’ve learned into medical school and into clinical practice
- “Gluten is kinda the root of all evil”
- “I don’t do dairy either”
- Along with removing trans-fats, sugar, food additives, etc., the top three things to avoid are gluten, dairy and corn
- “The gut is the gateway to health”
- She uses elimination diets – removing 12 toxic, inflammatory foods – caffeine, sugar, food-additives, alcohol, gluten, dairy, soy, corn, eggs, nightshade vegetables, and possibly grains and legumes as well – some people can tolerate adding some of these back in after a period of time
- “Your body knows better than any test”
- She uses herbs, yeasts, probiotics, and fermented foods to help restore gut health
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