February 14th, 2017
Contributing writer for Wake Up World
For Sheryl Utal, she never truly felt well. Throughout her childhood and into college, she struggled with muscle and joint pain, dry skin, constipation and fatigue. Doctors always told her to simply “toughen up” and dismissed her symptoms. It wasn’t until she was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s — an autoimmune disorder of the thyroid gland — at age of 25 that the pieces of the puzzle finally began to fit together.
Sheryl isn’t alone in her struggle with autoimmune disease; an estimated 22 million Americans are battling some form of dysfunction, 78 percent of whom are women, and the numbers are rising. The occurrence of autoimmune disorders — such as lupus, Crohn’s, celiac, rheumatoid arthritis, type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis and more — has nearly tripled over the last four decades.
Even so, there is hope. People like Sheryl, among many others, have discovered mind-body practices can have a powerful impact on healing and overall quality of life.
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