The Misery of Allergies & Reactivity

May 3, 2018

People with symptoms of allergy & reactivity experience an inappropriate immune response to what should be a harmless substance in the environment.  This could be pollen, a food item, a natural or synthetic chemical, or other product.  Allergy & reactivity symptom severity varies significantly from person to person, ranging from serious anaphylaxis (e.g. an allergic response requiring EpiPen use) to milder symptoms, such as ongoing headaches.

For some, environmental allergens such as pollen, grasses, dust &animal dander trigger the allergic response. These allergens irritate the nasal passages causing inflammation, increased mucous production, & symptoms such as itchiness, watery eyes, sneezing, runny nose & congestion.

Others may suffer digestive symptoms, either due to insufficient digestive enzymes or other gastrointestinal imbalance.  These symptoms are often referred to as an intolerance or hypersensitivity: however all are due to an abnormal immune response.  These types of reactivity may trigger less obvious symptoms, such as chronic headaches, sinus congestion, variable bowel motions, skin rashes, poor concentration, mood changes & energy slumps - some of these symptoms may be sudden, or they may be delayed by hours or even days.

So why do some people react to certain substances?

Essentially, your body believes that these otherwise harmless substances (animal hair, foods & grasses) are threatening.  Hence, when it comes into contact with these substances, known as allergens, your immune system releases large amounts of the chemical histamine.  Histamine is like a burly bouncer outside a club: its job is to muscle an allergen out of your body by any means necessary.  Some of the ways histamine does this job is by producing redness & inflammation, a running nose, itchy eyes, constricted airways, bloating & diarrhoea - all manifestations of allergic disease.

Current approaches to allergy management centre on both allergen avoidance & reducing histamine (e.g. antihistamine medication). 

But why does your body think these substances are harmful & mount this response against them in the first place?  Several contributing factors lead to your body's immune system to respond this way, including:

                                                                             * Inflammation within  your digestive tract (where the majority of your immune system is found).

                 * Damage to the lining of your digestive tract commonly known as "leaky gut", allowing small particles                      (undigested food, bacteria and/or toxins) to pass through to the blood stream causing inflammation in                      other areas of the body.

                 * Low levels of good bacteria and/or an overgrowth of bad bacteria within your intestine that interferes                        with your body's immune response.

Truly holistic allergy management encompasses symptomatic relief while also retraining the body's immune system to tolerate "threatening" allergens.  One way you can achieve this is by following an "Allergy & Reactivity Reduction Program" here at Harmony on Sunrise Wellness Centre.  This specially designed & professionally supported program incorporates carefully selected herbs & nutrients combined with tailored diet & lifestyle recommendations; to help repair your gut, improve your ability to tolerate allergens, & reduce your reactive symptoms.

Following a prescribed diet in conjunction with specialised  supplementation

greatly assists in reducing symptoms & building tolerance to allergens.  I will

recommend a specific dietary plan depending on your  symptom presentation

& health history. 

While following the Allergy & Reactivity Reduction Program  you will "rest" from foods that may be creating inflammation & damage within  your gut, giving your immune system an opportunity to "reset" & become more 

tolerant.  Once this "rest" period is complete, I will direct you to strategically

re-test the foods you have been resting from  to determine the right amount you  can tolerate in the future, so you can remain symptom free, while still enjoying  the foods & activities you love.

Completing this program can help you gain control of your reactivity & increase your tolerance levels, leading to a reduction in symptoms.  Imagine indulging in the foods & activities you enjoy; patting your dog without sneezing, eating the foods you love without bloating, or having a picnic in the grass without itching - now that would be life changing!

 

 

   

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