"Beat autoimmune. The 6 keys to reverse your condition and reclaim your health" - book notes, part 5

Address stress (p. 179)

Phases of stress: (p. 181)

  • alarm stage, where the body prepares to fight, flee, or freeze
  • resistance stage, where the organism makes the effort to cope, slowly depleting its reserves
  • exhaustion stage, wchich occurs if the organism is unable to muster the resources to overcome the threat

Stress is not something that happens to you, but rather how you respond, or put more accurately, how you react to a stressor - that is, a situation or event you perceive as threatening.

Stress responses: (p. 185)

  • healthy: stressor -> meaning -> stress response -> resolution -> relaxation response -> rest, digest, heal
  • unhealthy: stressor -> meaning -> stress reaction -> NO resolution -> stuck in fight-flight mode -> increased risk of autoimmune disease, and/or unhealthy coping behaviors, which add to the risk of disease

Stress can lead to: (p.)

  • acne
  • Alzheimer’s
  • autoimmune conditions
  • cancer
  • dementia
  • depression
  • headaches and migraines
  • heart disease or sudden heart attack (stress cardiomyopathy)
  • obesity
  • Parkinson’s
  • stroke
  • weight gain or loss
  • weight loss resistance

Things that are quite capable to kill you: (p. 190)

  • automatic concern for the needs of others, often ignoring your own
  • impulsive and rigid identification with duty, role, and responsibility, rather than being your authentic self
  • suppression or repression of so-called “negative emotions” (in quotes because the espression of anger, for example, in the present moment can be a valid emotion)
  • taking responsibility for how other people feel, never wanting to disappoint them, feeling that you can never say no

Personality types often associated with autoimmune conditions: (p. 191)

  • perfectionist. There are positive qualities associated with perfectionism, including being driven, being responsible, and having high standarts. The traits of perfectionism that are more likely to be associated with the development of autoimmune conditions include having a merciless inner critic, being judgemental of others, and being prone to anxiety and depression
  • workaholic. Worcaholics are compulsively work-obsessed and can become addicted to power and control in order to gain approval and public recognition
  • overachiever. Traits of this personality can be similar to those of perfectionists and include being motivated by a fear of being judget inadequate, incompetent, or unworthy
  • chronic overgiver. These individuals typically put the needs of others ahead of their own needs. Overgivers often have great difficulty receiving and may give out of a desire to feel loved, admired, or appreciated. An overgiver regularly sacrifices his or her own needs for the sake of others, which can lead to exhaustion, a sense of inworthyness, depression, resentment, and conflict in important raltionships
  • substance abuser. Childhood trauma is linked to personality traits insluding anxiety, compulsive behavior, frequent negative emotions, and impulsiveness

Necessary steps: (p. 202)

  • prioritize sleep
  • breath consciously and slowly
  • move more
  • spend time in nature

Harnessing the power of your mind: (p. 205)

  • know your why. “He who has a why can withstand any how”. This is about having string reasons for living. Your reasons for living inspire and keep you motivated, even when you feel low
  • surrender your stressors
  • tap away stress
  • meditate
  • use guided imaginary

Increase positive emotions: (p. 210)

  • cultivate social connections
  • start a gratitude journal
  • laugh more
  • get more hugs
  • forgive everyone. Forgiveness can be defined as a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness. It does not mean you must forget, deny, or excuse the behavior; it just means that you free yourself of deeply held negative feelings

Extra step: consider “Prescription-strength” tools: (p. 214)


  • get 8 or more hours of sleep
  • move throughout the day, ideally in nature
  • meditate - even a little bit - every day
  • cultivate meaningful connections
  • forgive everyone, including yourself