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Exercise and Autoimmune Disease: Important Tips On How To Balance

Exercise and Autoimmune Disease


An autoimmune disease is a type of health condition, where the immune system mistakenly attacks the healthy cells within your body. There are more than 80 different types of autoimmune diseases that may affect any part of the body and some common examples are Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriasis, Lupus, Thyroid diseases, etc. Individuals with autoimmune diseases may find the act of exercising to be an unnerving task, however, there are some ways to maintain a balance between these two.

Here are 5 tips for exercising that you can follow if you have an autoimmune disease:

  1. Consult with a professional

    It is always recommended to consult with a physical therapist, who can forge the right routine for you. Everyone tackles the symptoms of autoimmune disease in different ways, hence focussing on an exercise plan that fits your needs and requirements, is the right way to go. A physical therapist or a personal trainer will be able to monitor your performance and suggest necessary adjustments when required.

  2. Find your pace

    It is normal to not feel the same level of energy every day. This may affect your daily exercise routine but there is nothing to be worried about. You should go with the suggested methods and find the pace that you are comfortable with. Do not feel demotivated when you miss a day of exercise, instead make the necessary adjustments. 

  3. Focus on low-impact exercises

    With an autoimmune disease, high-impact exercises can stand out to be more challenging and can adversely affect your body. Hence, sticking with low-impact exercises like pilates, yoga, treadmill, cycling on exercise bikes, etc. is the better alternative. You should always consult with your trainer and physical therapist about the choices before starting out.

  4. Make realistic goals

    Generally, people set specific goals to go along with their exercise routine. You may also create such goals but make sure to have realistic expectations. Exercising with an autoimmune disease may create different hurdles in your path. However, it is better to respect your body’s limitations in order to minimize the strain. You should prioritize your well-being and not over-commit to a single thing. Also, make sure to conserve your energy and avoid overextending yourself.

  5. Improve your diet 

    Another way to balance exercise and autoimmune disease is to take up an anti-inflammatory diet plan. Most autoimmune diseases trigger inflammation in the body, which can lead to joint pain, fatigue, and muscle pain. You can consult with your nutritionist for the required changes in your diet. Usually, things like fresh vegetables, fruits, Omega 3 fatty acids, etc. are suggested, while consumption of red meat, processed sugar, alcohol, etc. are prohibited. 


If you have an autoimmune disease, then you can incorporate these essential tips into your exercise routine. Just make sure to remember the important factors, seek professional advice when required, and respect your efforts throughout the journey.

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