Allergies are adverse immune system reactions to a substance that would normally be considered harmless. Allergic reactions are caused by exposure to allergens. An allergen is a protein that the body judges to be foreign and dangerous. Possible allergens include specific foods, environmental toxins, pollens, moulds, mites, animal dander and a host of other irritants. Once exposed to an allergen, the immune system releases specific antibodies to destroy the enemy allergen, setting in motion a complex series of events involving many bio-chemicals. These chemicals then produce inflammation or other symptoms of an allergy response.
Allergic responses can range from mild to severe, where prompt professional medical advice may be required. Overall, the underlying causes of allergy and sensitivity are dietary and lifestyle factors specifically titled as imbalanced immune function, barrier function default (such as “leaky gut” syndrome), and toxic overload. Each of these is, in varying degrees, responsible for the development and continuation of allergy and sensitivity. There are natural cures for allergies that do not involve the use of pharmaceutical drugs. The Natural Cures website will show you how you can treat your allergies naturally, and well as to show you how you can make lifestyle changes that will improve your general health.
Common symptoms of a typical allergic reaction include:
- breathing congestion
- inflamed, bloodshot or scratchy eyes
- watery eye, tears
- puffy face
- flushing of the cheeks
- dark circles under the eyes
- runny nose
- Stomach ache
- Intestinal irritation or swelling.
More severe reactions include:
- constriction of the bronchial tubes
- (asthma) and difficulty breathing
- anaphylactic shock – which can be fatal if not treated in time.
Allergies can also result in:
- digestive stress,
Sensitive people may feel irritation on their tongue or mouth.
The underlying causes of allergy and sensitivity are dietary and lifestyle factors that break down the immune system and barrier defences – specifically Imbalanced Immune Function and Barrier Function Default. Imbalanced Immune Function A number of factors have a negative impact on the immune system including increased toxic burden due to pollution, repeated childhood and adulthood vaccinations and immunizations and damage to healthy intestinal flora due to over-reliance on antibiotic and steroids (especially birth control pills.) The immune system can also be weakened by hereditary factors – usually these are reflected in the gastrointestinal tract so that nutrients are not absorbed properly. These can then set you up for food allergies. Other causes of immune dysfunction and good allergies include nutritional deficiencies, a repetitive and monotonous diet, chemicals in the food chain due to pesticides and preservatives and chronic intestinal yeast overgrowth (candidiasis.) Barrier Function Default Barrier functions are what keep us from becoming sensitized (experiencing a negative body response) to substances. The barrier function for food sensitivity is digestion. Inadequate digestion for any reason (infection, inflammation, malabsorption) may result in digestive barrier default, where undigested food particles are absorbed into the bloodstream leading to allergies. The second barrier, for inhaled substances (dust, pollens, dander, moulds) is the mucus that covers the membranes of the sinuses and respiratory passages. The purpose of the mucus is to trap any irritants and particulates so that they do not come into contact with the membranes and can be removed. Lack of humidity and environmental irritants can damage the mucous membranes and allow foreign particles into the bloodstream. The third barrier is the skin and any break in the skin (cut, scrape, rash, burn or other skin defect) compromises the barrier and sensitization may occur. What people sensitize to the most through their skin is what touches damaged skin most frequently – clothing, fabric chemicals and dyes, laundry products, perfume, aftershave lotion, creams, sunscreens – even topical medications. Perspiration increases the likelihood of sensitization since perspiration occurs when the skin is hot and the blood vessels to the skin are dilated, which promotes absorption. Deficiencies in water and essential fatty acids, ultraviolet radiation, hormonal irregularities and stress can impair the skin’s repair process, leading the way to allergy and sensitivity. Leaky Gut Syndrome Leaky Gut Syndrome or excessive permeability in the digestive tract can lead to allergies because the immune system reacts to the particles of partially digested foodstuffs (macromolecules) which leak into the bloodstream through the gut as if they were foreign bodies. Causes of leaky gut syndrome can include poor digestion, alcohol consumption, the use of steroidal or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), viral, fungal and bacterial infections, parasites, nutrient deficiencies, excessive stress, antibiotics and radiation. Toxic Overload As our food and environment become increasingly saturated with pollutants and chemicals, the body’s mechanisms for elimination of toxins cannot keep up with the chemical deluge and as a result, our organs – including intestines, skin and respiratory tract – can become overloaded. Studies have shown that pollutants play a major role in the creation of allergies and auto-immnune diseases and illnesses. The constant circulation of toxins in the body taxes the immune system and an overburdened system ultimately becomes hypersensitive to food, airborne agents and chemicals, which results in allergies. The top triggers for allergic reactions are: Inhalants
- Plant pollens (including ragweed, grasses)
- Animal dander (cat, dog and other pets)
- Cockroach casings
- House dust mite casings
- Mould spores
- Tobacco smoke
- Vehicle exhaust
- Chemical products (paint and cleaning solution fumes)
Ingestants Foods (especially in children)
- Tree nuts
Food (especially in adults)
- Tree nuts
- Antibiotics (penicillin, amoxicillin etc)
- Non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs (aspirin etc)
- Plant poisons (poison ivy, oak, sumac)
- Jewellery (nickel, copper, chromates etc)
- Latex gloves
- Beauty products (hair dyes, cosmetics etc)
- Insect stings/bites
- Some medications
Once you have identified the foods you are allergic to, the next step is to eliminate them from your diet. Initially you should completely refrain from eating all allergenic foods for 60 – 90 days. After this period, you can begin to slowly reintroduce them into your diet. You should also vary the foods that you eat on a daily basis to avoid developing new allergies. Adopt a diet that includes a wide variety of non-allergenic fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and low-fat non-dairy animal protein. For people with allergies and sensitivities it is important to keep well hydrated. Most alternative medicine physicians generally recommend eight to twelve 8oz glasses of pure water daily. Foods play a dual role in allergies and sensitivities, as both triggers of and contributors to adverse reactions. The problem with food allergies and sensitivities is that 85% of them involve delayed reactions, manifesting up to 72 hours after consumption of the offending food. You may not realize that the wheat bread you ate two days ago is responsible for your headache today. And the symptoms may shape-shift; that is, change over time and with repeated exposure. “Proper diet is the foundation from which to deal with allergies of all types” says dentist and naturopathic physician Dr Dick Thom ND. DDS. “If the body is continually being stressed by the foods that are meant to nourish it, there will be fewer reserves left over for the immune system to deal with other ‘foreign’ substances”. Elimination Diet: Once you have identified the foods you are allergic to, the next step is to eliminate them form your diet. Initially, you should completely refrain from eating all allergenic foods for 60 – 90 days. After this period, you can begin to slowly reintroduce them into your diet. You should also vary the foods that you eat on a daily basis to avoid developing new allergies (see “Rotation Diet”). In most cases, this diet allows the body to repair intestinal barrier function, enabling patients to reintroduce the reactive foods into their diets. Dr James Braly, MD, who is regarded as a leading authority on gluten sensitivity and food allergies, estimates that only about 5% of delayed food allergies will not subside using the elimination and rotation diets, necessitating the use of other alternative therapies. Remember that eliminating an allergenic food can cause withdrawal phase, lasting one to five days, while the body detoxifies itself”, says Dr. Braly. Allergic symptoms may get worse during this period and cravings can be intense. Dr. Braly explains that “once the withdrawal phase has passed, the cravings also abate, and the allergy sufferer is free of dependence on that food, free of both the physiological and psychological desire to consume it so frequently and in such great quantities”. Rotation Diet: One way to ensure that the body is receiving a greater supply of nutrients from food, while at the same time minimizing the risk of exposure to allergenic foods, is to increase the variety of foods eaten and rotate them so that they aren’t eaten too frequently. This is known as a rotation diet. According to Dr. Braly, a rotation diet one of the simplest and most effective measures anyone can take to both prevent and deal with the problems of food allergies. “Normally, I would rotate the foods every four days”, he advises “This means that you are not eating any one food more often than every four days. You might be able to have the same food more than once a day, but then you wouldn’t have it again until four days later. Some people may need to go longer than that, but usually four days is ideal”. Dr. Braly also suggests adopting a diet that indulges a wide variety of non-allergenic fresh fruits and vegetables, seeds and nuts, and low-fate, non-dairy animal protein. “Grains are important too” he says. “Although, I make it a general policy to avoid the gluten grains such as wheat, rye, barley, and oats which many people are not able to tolerate. I would stick to grains like brown rice, millet and amaranth”. Stone Age Diet: The “Stone Age” diet is another potentially useful diet plan for allergy sufferers. The theory behind this diet is that our bodies are not genetically adapted to the synthetic, processed foods that constitute much of our modern eating practices. Therefore, we are unable to digest many foods properly, and they become allergenic as our body tries to defend against them. According to MD Abram Hoffer, due to the slow course of evolution, our digestive apparatus has remained the same for 10,000years. Thus, we are best suited for the foods prevalent during the Paleolithic era – meat, fish, vegetables, fruit and a few seeds. “You ate different foods in the spring, summer, fall and water and never had too much. You also did not load up on any one item” says Dr. Hoffer. Now, we eat an abundance of the same foods, especially grains, every day of the year. “If you overload the gut with one particular item, for instance bread three times a day, then eventually the body breaks down” explains Dr. Hoffer. Malnourishment and a leaky gut are elements of this breakdown. Food combining: If your food allergies are caused by poor digestion, which allows food molecules to escape the gut barrier, proper food combining may help restore healthy digestion. The general rule, according to Patrick Donovan, is that proteins and starchy carbohydrates are never eaten at the same time. Proteins may be eaten with non-starchy vegetables. Carbohydrates (grains, potatoes etc.) may be eaten with all vegetables. Fruits may be eaten alone, usually as a snack; the same is true with dairy products. “Digestion is optimal if foods eaten together have roughly the same digestion time”. Many alternative medicine practitioners have found that food combining helps patients avoid gas, belching and bloating, which is often caused when sugars from fruits or starchy carbohydrates ferment in the guy because the stomach is busy processing fats. Once again the efficacy of this diet depends on individual response and how severely digestion is impaired. Supplemental enzymes with food may also help.
- Do not consume any artificial sweeteners, such as Splenda, NutraSweet or Aspartame
- Do not consume high fructose corn syrup or mono-sodium glutamate.
- Do not drink any carbonated beverages.
- Avoid all fast food restaurants.
- Avoid all canned food.
- Eliminate conventional dairy products. The best dairy products are raw, unpasteurised and homogenised dairy from grass fed cows. If this is unavailable, then buy organic dairy.
- Avoid conventional beef. The best beef is organic grass fed beef.
www.grasslandbeef.com The second best is organic meat; this includes beef, veal, lamb, chicken and turkey.
Probiotics: Imbalances of intestinal flora are common among allergy sufferers. To normalize this situation, naturopath, osteopath and acupuncturist, Dr Leon Chaitow stresses the need to restore bowel flora balance with a daily program of probiotics, or the use of friendly bacteria that inhabit the intestines under healthy conditions. Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, and the Bifidobacteria are the key players in this process. To be effective, probiotic supplements should be freeze-dried, contain only the declared and desirable strains of the species and have concentrations of the friendly bacteria of about one billion parts per gram. They should also be kept refrigerated.
- Vitamin D has been shown to be a key factor in treatment. Take Vitamin D3 50,000-100,000 International Units a day for (how long?)
- Wholefood supplements are the best way of ensuring your nutritional needs are met.
- Omega 3s:
- Vitamin C www.livonlabs.com
- Zamu juice www.amazonherb.net
- Take Fivelac – one packet three times a day
- Digestive enzymes
Apple Cider Vinegar: Drinking apple cider vinegar upon onset of allergy symptoms or as a daily regimen has allowed many people to completely stop the histamine response and prevent their allergies. You can mix 1/8 cup of apple cider vinegar with 16 oz. of water and sip it throughout the day, or drink the entire mixture all at once. Often one dose of this will stop the allergy symptoms, but others need to take it up to 3 times a day to see results. If you drink this mixture when your allergies begin, you can usually see your symptoms disappear within 1-3 hours. It may taste disgusting at first, but you get used to it and benefits greatly outweigh the flavor! Bioflavonoids such as Quercetin taken orally along with bromelain, vitamin C and glutamine, are effective anti-allergy nutrients. For non food related allergies add:-
- Raw organic locally grown honey – 1 tablespoon one to three times a day
Nutritional Supplements: If digestive disorders are compounding an allergy, which is usually the case, they will need to be corrected before any significant improvements can occur. “I find that many people with such complaints suffer from deficiencies in vitamin A, certain B vitamins, zinc, magnesium and essential oils.” Dr. Braly says. “Some people, especially as they get older or if their allergies are severe, also require digestive assistance in the form of pancreatic enzymes and hydrochloric acid, so supplementing each meal with them can be helpful as well”. Alternatively, plant-derived enzymes like bromelain (from pineapple) or papain (from papaya) may be helpful. Both zinc and vitamin Aplay an important role in the production of IgA, an antibody secreted from the salivary glands in the mouth and from cells that line the digestive tract. If you are zinc and vitamin A deficient you produce less IgA and therefore you susceptibility to food allergies increase. Zinc also plays a role in the production of hydrochloric acid (HCI) which the body needs for digestion. Another group of nutrients that Dr. Braly employs to treat allergies is vitamin P or certain bioflavonoids. “Bioflavonoids are some of the most effective anti-allergy nutrients that I’ve come across” he says. “Many of my patients who are allergy prone, both to their diet and their environment, over time stop having allergic reactions once these bioflavonoids start taking effect. Quercetin taken orally along with bromelain, vitamin C and glutamine has produced wonderful results”. Finally, vitamin C in high doses can have a dramatic effect in improving allergy symptoms, particularly hay fever and asthma, due to its ability to counteract the inflammation responses that are part of such conditions. Robert Cathcart III MD, who pioneered the technique of taking vitamin C to bowel tolerance, recommends its use for allergies. In cases of more severe exposure he advises that the dose of vitamin C be increased as well.
Prescription and non-prescription medication:
What non-prescription and prescription drugs are you taking? Your non-prescription and prescription are partially the reason that you have this illness or disease – you need to get off these medications but do so only under the guidance of a licensed health care practitioner.
We know that when the body is out of balance, energy doesn’t flow, leading blockages and eventually disease. Here are some things you can do to combat stress and restore balance:
- Go to a Dr Morter BEST (Bio-Energetic Synchronisation Technique) Practitioner.
- Sign up for Energetic Re-Balancing: 2 practitioners to consider are:
- Consider using Mary Millers Iching System Products – ichingsystemsinstruments.com
Natural Treatment of Rhinitis: www.altmedrev.com/publications/5/5/448.pdf Natural Treatment for Allergies: www.ucp-research.org/natural-treatments-for-allergies Allergy Natural Remedies www.holistichealthbayarea.com/blog/asthma-and-allergy-natural-remedies
Allergies, An Integrative Approach: www.naturalnurse.com/allergies.htm Alternative medicine in allergies – prevalence, patterns of use, and costs: onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1034/j.1398-9995.2002.23469.x/full Defining Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Allergies: www.springerlink.com/content/02230776nrt53582/ Advances in Homeopathy and Immunology: www.paolobellavite.it/files/247_2011_frontiersbiosci.pdf The link between vaccines and allergies: www.jmptonline.org/article/S0161-4754(00)90072-1/abstract
Further Information (links and books)
- Coping With Food Intolerances, Dick Thom;
- Allergy Free: An Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide, Konrad Kail ND
- Allergy Relief and Prevention, Jacqueline Krohn
- An Alternative Approach to Allergies, Theron Randolph MD
- Dr Braly’s Food Allergy and Nutrition Revolution, James Braly MD
- Pantothenic Acid
- Natural Solutions for Food Allergies and Food Intolerances: Scientifically Proven Remedies for Food Sensitivities, Casey Adams
www.organicpharmacy.org (800) 819-6742 Nettle Herb, Nature’s Way www.vitacost.com (800) 381-0759 Yerba Mate Tea, Guayaki www.guayaki.com (888) 482-9254 Bee pollen, Madhava Honey www.madhavahoney.com (800) 530-2900 Vitamin C, Pure Radiance C www.thesynergycompany.com (800) 723-0277 Pine Tree Bark extract Moducare www.moducare.com NAET, Allergy Elimination Technique www.naet.com (714) 523-8900 Aller-7 Plus, North Star Nutritionals www.northstarnutritionals.com (800) 913-2592
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