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How Infections Trigger Autoimmune Diseases

by | Last updated: Jan 10, 2024 | Autoimmunity, Hypothalamus | 0 comments

Do infections trigger autoimmune diseases? Yes.

Let’s talk about it. 

While there are multiple triggers of autoimmunity including smoking, UV light, silicone, pesticides, heavy metals, injuries, and stress – infections have been long associated with autoimmunity. Whenever I have a patient with autoimmunity, I always investigate potential microbial triggers. If the infection is still active or the viral load is high, autoimmune symptoms are often worse.

There are over 100 different types of autoimmune disorders and many are triggered by infection, especially viruses. That’s because viruses hide in your cells, using your DNA to replicate themselves. This molecular mimicry, pretending to be a normal cell, can trigger the immune system to attack those cells, even after the virus has been eradicated. 

Some viruses actually interfere with how your immune system works by turning off your immune system’s ability to determine itself versus others. Self-attack is the basis of autoimmunity. Any infection can cause inflammation which your immune system is supposed to respond to. But when it over-attacks, healthy uninfected tissue can be compromised. 

It has been noted that many rheumatoid arthritis patients have sepsis within their affected joints. Often caused by mycobacterium which are intracellular hiding out in the joints, the immune system tries to attack the infection and in turn, attacks the cartilage leaving the joints damaged. 

Bacterial infections that are most associated with autoimmune disease include streptococcus, food poisoning and Lyme disease.

Viral infections include:

  • Epstein Barr Virus
  • COVID-19
  • Cytomegalovirus
  • Measles
  • Hand Foot and Mouth Disease
  • Mumps
  • Influenza
  • Zika
  • West Nile
  • Chickenpox
  • Parvo
  • Rotavirus
  • Hepatitis A and Hepatitis C

There are also sexually transmitted diseases that are linked to autoimmune disorders including chlamydia, Hepatitis B, Herpes, and HIV.

Is there anything you can do to help your body be less triggered into autoimmunity by infectious agents?


Your hypothalamus controls your immune system in multiple ways. It produces prolactin which then helps to trigger your thymus to program white blood cells to know the difference between self and other. If your hypothalamus is dysfunctional, your immune system becomes out of balance.

Supporting your hypothalamus nutraceutically with Genesis Gold® can reduce your likelihood of catching infections as well as dampen the potential autoimmune effects from those infections. 

In my patients with autoimmunity, those who take Genesis Gold® have a lowering of autoimmune reactions and antibodies over time. That’s because optimizing hypothalamus function helps to optimize immune function and decrease inflammation.

If you have any questions about autoimmunity and your hypothalamus please join us in our Hormone Reboot Training.

Hormone Reboot Training



About the Author - Deborah Maragopoulos FNP

Known as the Hormone Queen®️, I’ve made it my mission to help everyone – no matter their age – balance their hormones, and live the energy and joy their DNA and true destiny desires. See more about me my story here…



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