Allergic reactions can trigger sneezing, wheezing, mucus, coughing, itching and hives. Allergies are not only irritating, but many have been linked to chronic respiratory problems such as sinusitis and asthma. Allergic reactions can range from mild and annoying to sudden and life-threatening.
Mast cells are a type of white blood cell which contains histamine, an important natural chemical weapon in the body's arsenal for fighting infection. However too much histamine increases the inflammatory symptoms associated with allergies.
Allergy and inflammatory conditions are triggered by contact with allergens that are absorbed into the blood. When allergens meet special immune cells containing histamine, the cell wall of the immune cell becomes leaky and releases histamine into the surrounding blood and tissues. Allergen released histamine produces the familiar allergic symptoms of runny noses, blocked sinuses, itchy eyes, blotchy skin, coughing and wheezing.
Healthy adrenal function is very important for mediating the histamine release and inflammatory reactions that produce the symptoms experienced with allergies.
Every day a variety of stressors signal our adrenal glands to produce stress hormones. A wide range of physical and psychological demands like a stressful job, family responsibilities, relationship dynamics, lack of sleep, financial concerns, pain and emotional distress trigger our adrenals.
According to the findings in the 2014 April issue of the “Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology” people with seasonal allergies who had high levels of stress suffer more severe symptoms.
One of the best things you can do is to reduce your stress factors as much as possible. Don’t take on extras that you don’t absolutely need to do. Get to bed earlier. Sleep is very important for adrenal rejuvenation. Start toning down the amount of caffeine you consume. It may jack you up for the moment, but will burn out you adrenals faster in the long run. Eat a balanced diet of protein and carbohydrates and no skipping meals. Hypoglycemia only aggravates the problem of adrenal fatigue.
Some of the supplements we utilize with our patients include:
B-50 complex vitamin 1 capsule in the morning and if needed 1 cap in the afternoon.
Adrenal Cytotrophin a glandular formula which is pure nutrition for the adrenals 2 tabs am and afternoon.
For women Adrenasense (Natural Factors) is a combination herbal formula to support women’s adrenal glands.
Homeopathic Adrenal Support (Natra Bio) signals the adrenals to balance out (safe for children, pregnant women and people on multiple medications)
Quercetin is an antioxidant flavonoid found in many different fruits and vegetables which also has anti-inflammatory properties. Quercetin actually helps to stabilize the cell walls of the immune components that contain histamine. This stabilization helps prevent release of histamine. The allergy symptoms simply will not occur without release of histamine, even though you have inhaled pollen, animal hair, or whatever normally triggers allergy attacks.
Bromelain, is a protein-digesting natural enzyme. Bromelain is isolated from pineapple; it is literally made by grinding the stem of a pineapple. Bromelain works with quercetin in two ways: First, as an enzyme, it helps your body absorb a higher percentage of the quercetin you consume. Second, bromelain is proven to have its own anti-inflammatory properties.
You need to keep Quercetin & Bromelain at least 1 hour from foods to be effective.
Now understand Quercetin & Bromelain is not a decongestant or anti-histamine like the over the counter stuff, so it won’t dry you out, it just stops excess mucus production and allergy reactions. It also takes about 3 weeks to become fully effective. That means you should ideally start 3 weeks before your allergy season begins, but even if you are already in allergy season just double the dosage on the label for a week or two and then reduce and take as directed.
People with citrus or pineapple allergies should not take bromelain, however they can use other natural anti-inflammatories like boswellia, ginger or curcumin.
When allergy symptoms begin to heighten there are many natural remedies that work great.
Stinging Nettle leaf (not root) is a natural antihistamine, which means it naturally reduces the body’s ability to over produce histamine. It is often used in combination with other herbs for allergy relief.
Butterbur (Solaray) is a flowering herb European clinical studies have demonstrated that can be as effective as the leading allergy drugs Zyrtec® and Allegra®. Best of all it is free of the debilitating side effects of traditional antihistamines used to treat allergies, including palpitations, severe drowsiness, and fatigue. Research show rosmarinic found in Butterbur normalizes the inflammation and immune response that accompany allergic reactions.
Adrenergize (Enzymatic Therapy) a glandular formula which is pure nutrition for the adrenals 1 capsule 2x day.
Xlear Sinus Nasal spray (Xlear) washed out allergens from the sinuses & rehydrates the tissues so they don’t get overly dried out. To prevent sinus infections alternate with a Colloidal Silver nasal spray. Xlear Decongestant Nasal spray helps to dry up drippy noses.
Calm Breath (Herb Pharm) & or Ivy Extract (Enzymatic Therapy) are herbal formulas that help to keep the bronchial airways open. They are particularly beneficial for those with asthma or COPD.
Homeopathic Umcka Allergy & Sinus (Nature’s Way) or BioAllers Tree Pollen use as directed. Safe for anyone!
Similisan Allergy Eye drops
Dietary Changes: Decrease mucus producing foods such as dairy (including yogurt & cheese), soy products, and wheat. Try to eat more greens as they are natural detoxifiers. Also drink lots of water.
Again the secret to toning down allergy season is to start preparing your body ahead of peak season. Don’t wait!
Jane Jansen Holistic Practitioner Tree of Life Wellness Center Inc. 508-336-4242
Host Holistic Healthline Radio
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