Understanding the Rise in Autoimmune Diseases

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Autoimmune disease is a condition in which the body’s immune system attacks its organs. Several decades ago, such conditions were rare but presently, they are rampant among people. Physiologically speaking, the body’s immune system should only develop an immune reaction against antigens. Antigens are receptors on surfaces of pathogens that enter the body and cause infection. When the body’s immune system attacks a part of the body, it means the immune system views that body part as foreign. Some of the autoimmune conditions include Hashimoto disease, Multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and celiac disease. Why are such diseases on the rise? why are there a lot of people with autoimmune conditions? Below are some of the reasons.

Stress Can Trigger Autoimmune Conditions

There is a high rise of psychological stress in the world. The present-day life is full of stress stimulating factors such as relationship issues, financial constraints, and business challenges. Such things were not as intense in the past as they are now. Owing to such misfortunes, people are more stressed than before. If you take for example a condition like Hashimoto, it is mostly in people with stress-related conditions. One of the factors that have led to the rise of autoimmune diseases is the rampant increase in stress among people.

Increase in Consumption of Unhealthy Foods

Some foods trigger allergies in the body. Such foods make the immune system to always react to food even if it doesn’t have any pathogens in it. An example is celiac disease that is triggered by the consumption of gluten foods. Foods that are processed contain chemicals that are not friendly to the body. As a result, the body views those foods as a disease and they initiate an immune response attacking the organ that has absorbed the chemicals from the food.

Being a Woman

The female human body is more prone to autoimmune conditions because of the hormonal fluctuations that it goes through. Conditions like inflammation of the ovaries is a clear indication that the immune system is reacting to the ovary. Men also have a hormone called testosterone which works to prevent unnecessary inflammation in the body. Hormonal imbalances are a chief cause especially during old age when you are transitioning to menopause.

Environmental Factors

The environment is no longer the same compared to some decades ago. Industries dispose of chemicals carelessly making people inhale or contact them. Chemicals such as silica, mercury, cadmium, and gold have become common in the environment. These chemicals are among the causative agents of autoimmune diseases. The more industries dispose of these chemicals carelessly; the more autoimmune diseases keep infiltrating the population.


Owing to the rise of chronic conditions such as hypertension and diabetes, people always use medication to prolong life. Medications such as hydralazine which is used in hypertensive crises have been known to cause drug-induced autoimmune diseases. Medications containing Sulpha are also a precipitating factor of autoimmune diseases. If you look at such medications, they are widely used all over the world. Many medications can trigger autoimmune diseases but because doctors want to treat the present conditions, they have to take the risk.


Autoimmune conditions are common nowadays and besides the above causative agents, genetic inheritance also plays a role. People who have a positive family history of autoimmune conditions are most likely going to get one. Just be keen about the diet you take, the lifestyle you live and the environment you are living in. Keep a regular exercise routine and avoid stressing yourself. Autoimmune conditions also take time to diagnose and do autoimmune treatment because most doctors have not established enough diagnostic and therapeutic machines that can pinpoint the condition.