Seasonal Allergies – Most Natural Common Treatments

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What is an Allergy?

An allergy is the response of the body's immune system to normally harmless substances, such as pollens, foods, and house dust mite. Whilst in most people these substances (allergens) pose no problem, in allergic individuals their immune system identifies them as a’ threat’ and produces an inappropriate response.

What is an Allergy
Allergies are classified into IgE mediated and non-IgE mediated allergies. In IgE mediated allergies the immune system produces exaggerated amounts of a distinct class of antibodies known as IgE antibodies that are, specific for the particular offending allergens. These IgE antibodies bind to the surface of cells in the body called mast cells which become ‘IgE-sensitised’ such that these cells can then identify particular allergens the next time they come in contact with the body. This process is called sensitization, and at this stage there are no physical symptoms of an allergy.

Mast cells are present in tissues that are in contact with the external environment, including the skin, nose, eyes, mouth, throat, stomach and gut. The next time that the same allergen is encountered the mast cells identify it as an intruder and produce histamine and other chemicals. It is the release of these chemicals from mast cells and their effects on the body that result in allergic symptoms.

IgE-mediated allergy may cause a wide spectrum of symptoms depending on the allergen and the site of the body affected. In the nose histamine release results in symptoms of runny nose,  itchy nose sneezing (rhinitis) that are commonly associated with itchy red eyes (conjunctivitis). In the skin symptoms include redness and nettle rash (hives, wheals). In the breathing tubes allergies cause wheezing, cough and shortage of breath (asthma), whereas in the gut symptoms such as abdominal discomfort (‘tummy ache’), nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea may occur. Severe allergies may result in throat swelling, severe asthma and a drop in blood pressure. Severe allergic reactions are also known as anaphylaxis, and can be life-threatening.

 Seasonal Allergies

ALLERGY season is upon us as Texas CEDAR trees bloom and pollen floats through the air. There are some great natural products that help alleviate the symptoms of allergies without the side effects of some of the “unnatural” products that many use.

QUERCETIN is one of our bestsellers. It is known for inhibiting allergy and inflammatory responses. Quercetin is a bioflavonoid, or part of the vitamin C family. Bioflavonoids are coloring pigments found throughout the plant kingdom that are antioxidants and provide protection from environmental stresses.

When ALLERGENS are absorbed into the bloodstream, they trigger allergy and inflammatory conditions. 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.

QUERCETIN actually helps to stabilize the cell walls of the immune components that contain histamine. This stabilization helps prevent release of histamine. Without histamine, there are no allergy symptoms. What is really nice about quercetin is it doesn’t “over” dry, doesn’t make you drowsy, and has very few negative interactions since it is part of the vitamin C family.

QUERCETIN also helps with asthma, which is allergic inflammation involving the lungs.

QUERCETIN is available in supplement form – chewables available for children. Quercetin is usually combined with bromelain or pineapple enzyme since it is barely soluble in water and needs the bromelain to increase absorption. Bromelain has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that act synergistically with quercetin.

Suggested dosage of quercetin for allergy and asthma is 1000 to 2000 mg. per day divided into at least 2 doses.

HOMEOPATHICS such as TEXAS ALLERGY MIX are popular and effective for seasonal allergies. Homeopathics are effective and safe enough for a small child with no drowsiness and no drug interactions. There are many homeopathic formulations available. Some are for general allergy symptoms while others are specific to the allergen, such as tree pollen, pet dander, mold, dust, etc. A bestseller is the Texas Allergy Mix – it is specific to mold, oak, cedar, ragweed, etc.

HERBS also work for allergies. Nettle, which inhibits histamine release is available in both capsules and tea. Boneset, horehound, fenugreek and horseradish are some of the other herbs used – usually in combination to soothe the respiratory tract while breaking down mucous. There are also enzymes which help digest allergy causing proteins in the blood which takes away allergy symptoms.

Give some NATURAL PRODUCTS a try this allergy season and see how they work for you.

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