Do you suffer from allergies – whether they are seasonal or otherwise? Many people do, and the normal course of action for many who suffer allergies is to load up on prescription drugs and over-the-counter medication. But did you know that most allergies are due to a response by our immune systems caused by over-stimulation – that is, too many irritants in the body at once? It’s true. By elimination of various allergens affecting the body’s environment, you will decrease the immune system response to factors like seasonal allergies. It’s that simple. Here’s why:
When seasonal allergies flare up in the spring or fall, your body is over-reacting to foreign substances in the air which normally should be benign – pollen, dust, grass seeds, and other naturally-occurring substances. Your body is already “busy” trying to protect itself against other substances, such as foreign bacteria and viruses, and the food you are eating – many common foods are the culprit:
- Pasteurized dairy
- Other processed foods
Most of these foods are incredibly processed – and in addition, have the added component of being covered in pesticides and other chemicals, are irradiated, and even genetically-modified. All of these factors greatly contribute to the body’s allergic and inflammatory response to toxic and unwanted substances.
When the pollen comes, it’s just the final tipping point. You become congested, your nose drips, your eyes water, you sneeze…you may even develop secondary sinus infections or respiratory ailments. Other allergic reactions can range from eczema and skin irritations or disorders to digestive, nervous system, endocrine, and cardiovascular problems as well.
For instance, if you’ve ever had a “panic attack”, did you ever consider that the symptoms you experience might be related to the foods you eat? From experience, I know my body reacts violently to certain foods, and I experience full-blown panic attack-like and other symptoms such as nervous system disruption and digestive issues. The more I eat those foods, the worse my symptoms become. Read my story of why I changed my diet to traditional foods to improve my health and stop having “panic attacks”.
What’s the solution? Instead of medication, try removing all processed foods from your diet and see what happens.
Wait a few weeks, and then gradually add back in replacements for these foods that are whole:
- Sprouted, soaked, whole grains in place of processed ones
- Raw dairy from a clean, organic source for pasteurized dairy
- Grass-fed, natural meats and eggs for commercially and industrially-raised ones
- If you aren’t eating it already, start having a serving or two a week of safe-source fish (check the guide for current safe selections in your area).
- Organic fruits and vegetables for conventionally-produced ones
- Raw foods like nuts, fermented foods like real, homemade yogurt or kefir instead of store-bought, processed, pasteurized selections
- Natural fats like olive oil, coconut oil, pumpkin seed oil, flax oil, avocado oil, or walnut oil for industrial and rancid oils like canola, cottonseed, soybean, corn, sunflower, safflower, peanut and other polyunsaturated fats that have been damaged by processing.
Natural foods and good nutrition always support the body’s ability to fight off infections and disease, and allergic responses are no different. Make a lasting change today and see if it doesn’t make a difference in your allergies and eliminate your need to buy expensive drugs that are harmful to your health, and which only cover up the problem.
Another idea to consider is the toxicity levels in your body. Most people have toxins in their bodies, and some people’s toxic levels become serious enough that it interferes with the ability of organ systems to do their jobs and keep you healthy. When the body becomes unable to deal with harmless substances like dander and pollen, has trouble maintaining a normal weight, or has problems digesting foods that are consumed, this can often be a sign that the body needs extra help with detoxification. Read this post about how detoxifying the liver, one of the body’s largest and most important organs, can help with health problems, including allergies.
Want more information on allergies and how what you eat can cause health problems that you might not know are connected to your allergies?
The real health and financial implications of food allergies
My liver and gallbladder miracle cleanse experience
For more information about specific nutritional components and nutrients which can help allergies, as well as those to avoid, visit Natural Ways.
8 replies on “Seasonal Allergies, Allergic Reactions, Your Diet, and Detoxification”
I agree with the fact that there is alot of crap that messes up our
digestive system however my cousin decided to raise her daughter all natural & when she entered school she couldn’t eat anything that was processed, she was allergy tested & had many food allergies never exposed to corn syrep of any type it makes her very hyper & doesn’t take much
I just love this post! How true – our little boy had terrible food allergies, intolerances and suffered from eczema that was horrible. We were so tired of giving him the recommended potent meds and creams that did nothing but cover up symptoms (if we were lucky) and just did not help him but made his body weak and sick. It was awful. I wanted to share that I agree about beneficial bacteria in fermented foods as we have been giving him Belly Boost children’s chewable probiotics and they immediately and dramatically began to clear his skin. It has been amazing and I really recommend this to anyone with skin, digestion or food issues.
Lisa – no doubt, when you don’t expose your children to chemicals and toxins much, it does make them sick when they do eat it. I can attest that this happens to my 9-year old son when he eats processed foods when he goes elsewhere because he doesn’t eat those things here. But, I also try to make sure it is minimized and that when he goes away from home at least some of the time, I send food with him.
When he was in public school last year I hand-delivered a lunch to him every day because the school was a block away from our house. We home-schooled him this year, but next year he is starting at a new charter school. Although they don’t have a lunch program yet and I am one of the co-chairs of the lunch committee (so you can bet I’ll be gunning for the best food possible). But, if the school lunch program looks like it’s not going to be a good program, I’ll just do what I’ve done in the past – send food with him.
Smiling green mom – thanks for putting in your two cents for the use of friendly bacteria and probiotics. I totally agree with you that these bacteria are amazing and really do work. I’ve seen it in my own family too! 🙂
My allergies are so much better when I am eating whole foods. I also have to stay away from dairy even raw. Right now I have been eating really bad the last four days and have gotten really depressed from it. I usually can stay away from the bad stuff for awhile, but it seems I always end up binging. Is there any advice you can give someone in my situation. Thanks. I really enjoy your blog and your recipes look soooo good!
Excellent article!! I wholeheartedly agree!! Since going off all processed foods and transitioning into real whole nutrient dense and properly prepared and raised foods, I have seen my allergies almost completely disappear. I have only had minor trouble this season, as compared to years past when I suffered regularly from sinus migraines and allergies that led into an asthmatic response. I truly believe next year I will be even freer from the toxic load I once carried and have even an ever better response to seasonal allergens!!
Great post! I had found during my ‘vegan trial’ that avoiding dairy got rid of my seasonal allergies. After doing GAPS my dairy allergy is gone (before even raw caused sinus infections), but I started getting seasonal allergies again this spring. I opted to try going on GAPS rather than cutting out dairy again (I’d rather give up grains than cheese and yogurt!) and it worked! So exciting! So I’ll be on GAPS this summer, I’d rather avoid grains and avoid the runny nose as well 🙂
Sorry for the delay in this response! I have been having some strange things going on with my web site where sometimes I don’t see comments for days or weeks. !!!
Something that really helped me was to do a candida cleanse. That basically means elimination diets of most things like wheat, soy, nuts, dairy, and corn. Here is a link to some information on candida (yeast cleansing):
Candida overgrowth in your body can be systemic and can definitely cause your immune system to overreact to many things. Although candida cleanses are not a quick fix, they can help you long-term over long periods of your life once they are completed. I completed a candida cleanse that spanned over nearly six months of time. That seems like a long time, but think about how long you have suffered during your life with allergies and this might seem short compared to that.
You might try the GAPS diet to eliminate allergies – as Cara has testimonial below. Check out the GAPS web site and book –
GAPS Diet Guide is the diet book plan, and The Gut and Psychology Syndrome is the name of the other book written by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.
Lisbeth, Lydia, and Cara – it is so good to hear from you all that your allergies are improved after dumping processed foods and improving your diet. We have had the same experience in our household. Sometimes my husband gets into a habit of eating out a lot (due to work) or whenever he drinks more than one beer on a given day, his allergies will flare up again. It’s no wonder – especially with the beer – as it is heavy on grains and hops, and those exacerbate our immune system response and cause us to be over sensitive to many things.
I really do think grains cause many more problems than they solve…and I can also attest to that. I am so much better off when I avoid them. When I do eat them, it’s sprouted, soaked, or fermented.
I also agree that the body’s toxic load has everything to do with how we react to allergens as well. Detoxing through protocols and diet really do the trick.
Lizabeth, I would highly recommend either The Mood Cure or The Diet Cure by Julia Ross. Changed my life! she is also online http://www.dietcure.com