It seems discussing aAutoimmune diseases in men is not a topic that is discussed very often. That’s because 80% of all patients diagnosed with autoimmune diseases are women, but the gap is getting smaller. This is why we think it’s important that we take a look at the five most common autoimmune diseases and their symptoms in men.
Also called adrenal insufficiency, Addison’s disease is an autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks the adrenal glands. The primary role of your adrenal glands is to produce and regulate the stress hormone cortisol.
To receive an Addison’s disease diagnosis, you must have lost 90% of your adrenal glands’ function. However, you can still have adrenal insufficiency without theis diagnosis of Addison’s disease. Anything between optimal health and Addison’s disease is referred to as adrenal fatigue. It’s found that most men fall somewhere on this spectrum.
Symptoms of Addison’s disease develop slowly over several months. Symptoms are often subtle or mirror symptoms of other conditions, which unfortunately makes symptoms easy to ignore as signs as Addison’s disease unless visiting a functional medicine practitioner like Dr. Autoimmune.
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks the small intestine. It’s also an autoimmune response to gluten. Gluten (from Latin, “glue”) is a protein in wheat made up of the peptides, gliadin and glutenin. It is found in other grains such as semolina, spelt, kamut, rye, and barley. Gluten is what makes bread airy and fluffy—but it’s also highly inflammatory for most people.
Consuming gluten when you have celiac disease causes damage to your villi, or the tiny hair-like projections that run along the surface of your gut that help you to digest food properly. This leads to nutrient deficiencies, leaky gut, and increases your odds of developing another autoimmune condition.
Women are twice as likely to have multiple sclerosis, yet it’s still one of the more common autoimmune diseases in men.
This autoimmune disease can develop at any age, but the most common age of onset for men is between 20 and 50. It happens when inflammation causes damage to the nervous system.
Each person with MS will also develop a unique set of symptoms, based on the specific pattern of inflammatory nervous system damage in that individual, and the affected part(s) of the body.
There are no MS symptoms that are exclusively found in men and not women, but some signs of MS are generally more common for men or women.
Symptoms of multiple sclerosis vary in severity and duration from person to person; and they can also change over time.
Unlike most autoimmune conditions that attack one bodily system, lupus erythematosus (lupus) is an autoimmune disease that impacts multiple systems in the body. Because of this, lupus can be life-threatening and can affect the skin, joints, internal organs and the nervous system.
Men account for 1 in 10 of individuals diagnosed with lupus. Research also indicates that the disease typically presents more severe symptoms in men than women. That’s likely because the disease is underdiagnosed in men. Symptoms of this autoimmune disease vary widely and can range from mild to severe.
Lupus isIt’s also nicknamed “The Great Imitator ”. It got this nickname because it mimics other diseases and it impacts multiple bodily systems. Symptoms from lupus often come and go or change entirely;, that’s why it’s so important that you visit a functional medicine practitioner like Dr. Autoimmune.
Without proper testing you may be completely unaware that you even have lupus or another autoimmune disease if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned below.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) refers to a group of inflammatory conditions affecting the intestines and colon.
IBD shares many symptoms with two other autoimmune diseases called Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Though they share similar symptoms they’re actually quite different. For instance, inflammation occurs anywhere along the digestive tract in people with Crohn’s disease, whereas it’s limited to the large intestine in those with ulcerative colitis.
People with Crohn’s disease have patchy inflammation, thickened colon walls and ulcers that extend deep into tissues in the walls.
As I mentioned above, inflammation is limited to the colon in patients with ulcerative colitis.
By the time symptoms have begun, conventional medicine treats both diseases the same way: with a slew of immunosuppressive medications and invasive surgeries. By ignoring the upstream factors that led to the condition, these methods don’t address the thing that caused the inflammation in the first place. Over time, IBD symptoms can reach beyond the gastrointestinal tract, including the eyes, joints, and skin.
These are the most common autoimmune diseases in men, yet that doesn’t mean men cannot get other autoimmune diseases as well. The great news is that regardless of which autoimmune disease is affecting you, you can eliminate your symptoms and reverse your condition with a functional medicine approach like what Dr. Autoimmune uses. It starts by getting to the root cause of your symptoms.
Conventional medicine does not recognize autoimmune diseases as diseases of the immune system as a whole. Instead, they are treated as diseases of particular organs. Unfortunately, that means that there isn’t a unified branch in conventional medicine to manage autoimmune conditions. This is where Dr. Ian Hollaman and the Dr. Autoimmune team come in.
Functional medicine sees the body as a whole unit and views autoimmunity as a disease of the immune system. Instead of focusing on disease symptom management, functional medicine focuses on supporting and strengthening the immune system by getting to the root of what causes autoimmune diseases in men in the first place.
If you or any men in your life suffer from any of the symptoms mentioned above without an identified, underlying cause, then you should seek care right away!
Dr. Ian Hollaman, and the Dr. Autoimmune team located in Boulder, Colorado takes into account many factors, such as environment, symptoms, nutrition, genes, and lab values, in order to determine the root cause of your medical issues so your health and well-being can be restored.
If you’re ready to take the next step in balancing your health, Dr. Autoimmune offers multiple ways to reach out for your convenience, and encourages you to connect with us so we can answer any questions you may have. Our specialized staff is standing by ready to help!
Click here to schedule your appointment with the Dr. Autoimmune team today! We offer 100% remote care so anyone can heal from anywhere! And we’ve set up ‘The Dr. Autoimmune Solution’ which is a comprehensive new patient special that includes everything necessary to determine the root cause of your condition and start you on the journey to getting your life back.
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Ian really knows A LOT about thyroid problems! His knowledge and confidence convinced me to make the lifestyle changes -including no gluten, no sugar, and more exercise-that are essential to healing hormonal imbalances and to staying well. Several months later, I feel stronger, more energetic, and am happier than I have felt in a long time. Many thanks for all your help!
We’ve set up a comprehensive new patient special that includes everything necessary to determine the root cause of your condition and start you on the journey to getting your life back.
✓ 1-Hour Comprehensive Physical and Neurologic Exam
✓ Advanced Brain Mapping
✓ Complete Blood Panel – Examining Over 80 Unique Markers (Includes lab fees)
✓ Follow Up Session to Review Findings and Develop Customized Care Plan
Optimal wellness is just a click away.