What Autoimmune Sufferers Can Learn from Bodybuilders

Living with an autoimmune condition can feel like you’re constantly battling fatigue, pain, and a whole bunch of other annoying symptoms. Even the easiest tasks can seem super overwhelming.

What Autoimmune Sufferers Can Learn from Bodybuilders
Two women in a gym with weights

Hey there! Living with an autoimmune condition can feel like you’re constantly battling fatigue, pain, and a whole bunch of other annoying symptoms. Even the easiest tasks can seem super overwhelming.

But what if we told you that there’s something unexpected that can help you out? Enter bodybuilders. Yep, you heard it right! Those gym buffs with their strict routines and disciplined lifestyles have a thing or two that could really benefit those of us dealing with autoimmune diseases.


Let’s dive into what they call the “triangular training method” and see how we can adapt it for our lives.

The Triangular Training Method: What’s It All About?

Bodybuilders don’t just get those impressive physiques by chance. Their secret is a balanced approach focusing on three main areas: exercise, nutrition, and sleep. Let’s explore how we can steal these principles to make our lives a bit easier and healthier when we're struggling with an autoimmune.

Exercise: Moving Your Body for Better Health

Exercise is more than just a way to get in shape; it’s a crucial part of staying healthy, especially for those of us with autoimmune conditions. Too much sitting is bad for you, in times of pain, it's hard, but you'll thank yourself for trying.

Here's Why👇

  • Reduces Inflammation: Regular physical activity helps lower inflammation, which is a big deal for autoimmune sufferers.
  • Boosts Mood: Endorphins released during exercise are your body’s natural mood lifters.
  • Improves Energy Levels: Consistent exercise can help fight off that chronic fatigue.
  • Supports Joint Health: Strength and flexibility exercises protect your joints, crucial if you have conditions like rheumatoid arthritis.

Try These👇

Low-Impact Cardio: Think walking, swimming, or cycling – these get your heart pumping without stressing your joints.

Strength Training: Light weights or resistance bands are perfect for building muscle and improving bone density.

Flexibility Exercises: Yoga and stretching can enhance mobility and reduce stiffness.

Mind-Body Practices: Tai chi and Pilates blend movement with mindfulness, offering both physical and mental perks.

But Where Do I Start? 👇

Consult Your Doctor: Always check with your healthcare provider before starting something new.

Start Slow: Ease into it with low-intensity activities and gradually increase the intensity.

Listen to Your Body: Adjust your routine if you experience pain or extreme fatigue.

Stay Consistent: Regular, consistent exercise beats occasional intense workouts every time.

You Wouldn't Fill Up A Ferrari With Diesel Would You?

What you eat can either help or hinder your journey with an autoimmune condition. Let’s focus on foods that boost our health and energy levels.

But Why Does This Matter To Me?👇

Reduces Inflammation: Anti-inflammatory foods can manage symptoms.

Supports Immune Function: Nutrient-rich foods strengthen your immune system.

Provides Energy: A balanced diet ensures you have the energy to tackle daily challenges.

Promotes Overall Health: Good nutrition supports everything from heart health to mental well-being.

Ok, So I'm Not A Ferrari But What Do I Eat?👇

Fruits and Vegetables: Packed with antioxidants and vitamins. Aim for a rainbow of colors.

Lean Proteins: Think chicken, turkey, fish, and plant-based proteins.

Healthy Fats: Avocados, nuts, seeds, and olive oil are great options.

Whole Grains: Choose quinoa, brown rice, and oats for fibre and essential nutrients, though some people with IBD/IBS may need to test with small amounts first.

Fermented Foods: Yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi support gut health.

You Probably Need To Cancel These👇

Processed Foods: These can increase inflammation.

Sugar: Too much sugar is a no-no for inflammation.

Alcohol: Moderate drinking might be okay, but too much can impair immune function.

Gluten and Dairy: Some people find these trigger symptoms. An elimination diet can help identify if they affect you. Some people that are dairy intolerant might want to experiment with Goats or Sheep's cheese and milk, from my own experience this has work wonders for me. Cheeses like Manchego, Ossu Errati etc can be found in any supermarket.

Tips For Healthy Eating👇

Plan your meals well, preparation is key to avoiding unhealthy options. Stay hydrated, water is essential for overall health. Eat Mindfully, notice how foods make you feel and adjust your diet accordingly. Seek professional guidance, a nutritionist or dietitian can tailor advice to your needs.

Sleep: The Unsung Hero of Health

Never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep. It’s vital for managing autoimmune conditions.

Why Sleep Matters👇

  • Promotes Healing: Your body repairs itself during sleep.
  • Reduces Inflammation: Good sleep lowers inflammation levels.
  • Supports Mental Health: Sleep helps manage stress and anxiety.
  • Boosts Immune Function: Quality sleep strengthens your immune system.

Tips for Better Sleep👇

Establish a routine, go to bed and wake up at the same time daily. Create a sleep-friendly environment, keep your bedroom dark, quiet, and cool. Limit screen time, reduce blue light exposure at least an hour before bedtime. Practice relaxation techniques, deep breathing, meditation, or gentle yoga can help you unwind. Avoid stimulants, limit caffeine and nicotine, especially later in the day.

Addressing Sleep Issues:

  • Identify the Cause: Stress, pain, or sleep disorders could be the culprit.
  • Seek Professional Help: A healthcare provider or sleep specialist can help if problems persist.

Integrating the Triangular Training Method into Your Life

Making these changes doesn’t happen overnight. Here’s how to start integrating exercise, nutrition, and sleep into your daily routine:

  1. Set Realistic Goals: Start small and build up gradually.
  2. Track Your Progress: Journals or apps can help you stay motivated.
  3. Stay Flexible: Adjust your routine based on how you feel.
  4. Seek Support: Join support groups or online communities for encouragement.
  5. Celebrate Your Successes: Every small victory counts and keeps you motivated.

Managing an autoimmune condition requires a holistic approach. By adopting the triangular training method that our bodybuilding friends have used for years, you can take proactive steps to improve your overall well-being. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Be patient, stay committed, and celebrate each small success.

Share this blog with anyone who might benefit. Let’s build a supportive community for all autoimmune warriors! 💪🌟

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