AllergiesMarch 8, 2012 Conditions We Specialize in
Allergies are very common and on the rise. Over 50 million Americans suffer from allergies. Allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, is the reason for over 15 million doctor office visits each year. Annual medical costs exceed $4.5 billion. Food allergy occurs in approximately 6 to 8 percent of children under the age of 4 and approximately 4 percent of adults.
Currently, the primary treatment is to avoid the allergen, whether it is a particular food, animal, chemical, or drug. In the past, sensitive patients were advised to move to climates where there were fewer plants likely to cause allergic reactions. Allergy shots may be administered. Physicians more typically prescribe medication such as antihistamines or steroids. Many sufferers take over-the-counter (OTC) medicine to reduce or eliminate allergic reactions.
Treatment at Diwa
There are many complementary approaches to treating allergies, such as herbal medicine, homeopathy, nutrition, and body-mind treatments such as NAET (Nambudripad’s Allergy Elimination Technique). At Diwa, we tailor our treatments to meet the patient’s needs and address allergies using any of the following modalities – acupuncture, acupressure, herbal medicine, NAET, applied kinesiology and diet modifications.
There are a number of herbs and formulas that can help eliminate allergies. Some herbs include cinnamon (gui zhi) and xanthium (cang er zi), to help elevate serum IgG to neutralize allergens and increase the T-cell ratio. Other herbs such as scute (huang qin) work to inhibit the release of histamines. Other herbs such as forsythia (lian qiao) and perilla (zi su ye) work to eliminate antigens.
The human body is made up bones, flesh, nerves and blood vessels which can only function in the presence of vital energy (or “Qi”). Without this energy, the body cannot function. When the body is alive, vital energy moves freely through meridians and blood circulates through blood vessels distributing essential nutrients to various parts of the body. Acupuncture helps to restore this flow of energy and blood, and thus, the boosting the immune system and overall health of the patient.
- Increase water intake (at least 5-8 glasses of water daily). Water helps to move the vital energy throughout the body.
- Bioflavonoids and carotenoids, found in many plants, especially fruits and vegetables, are powerful antioxidants. Some include quercetin, parsley, carrots, yams, pumpkins, and greens help reduce allergic reactivity.
- Additional antioxidants such as vitamin C, garlic, zinc, and vitamin A can also help. Vitamin C is a powerful antihistamine that also suppresses broncho-constriction, which is important for those suffering from allergic symptoms.
- Other herbs include German chamomile, thyme, borage, nettles, and licorice root.
NAET is a non-invasive, drug free, natural solution to eliminate allergies. An allergy is defined as “an adverse physical, physiological, and/or psychological response of an individual towards one or more substances also known as allergens”. Selective testing and treatment are used to balance the body bioenergetically with various unsuitable electromagnetic energies, such as allergens (i.e. food, chemicals, natural environmental resources such as grass, trees, dust, etc.). NAET works to intercept and stop the immune response, change the characteristics of the previous stimulus into a new one with a different signal, with the result that the anticipated allergic reaction no longer takes place. NAET helps reprogram the brain by erasing the previous harmful memory of the allergen and imprinting a new, useful memory in place, thus enhancing immunity of the body naturally.
Allergies can cause a wide range of symptoms such as sneezing, watery eyes, and can aggravate or trigger other conditions such as asthma, sinusitis, and ear infections. Additionally, allergies can cause skin-related symptoms such as hives and eczema to gastrointestinal problems and others such as headaches.
What is an Allergy?
An allergy is when a person’s immune system reacts to one or more substances from the environment resulting in an adverse physical, physiological and/or psychological response. A substance that causes a reaction is known as an allergen. When a person is allergic to a particular substance, the body reacts by releasing chemicals which cause allergy symptoms ranging from slight itching to swelling of the tissues and organs, mild runny nose to severe asthmatic attacks, general tiredness or fatigue to severe anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis occurs when the body goes into shock, leading to sharp decline in blood pressure, respiratory arrest and possibly heart failure.
The Allergic Reaction
When a person is allergic towards a particular substance(s), the ingested, inhaled or contacted allergen alerts the immune system of the body. The immune system commands the white blood cells to produce antibodies known as immunoglobulins type E (IgE) to stimulate the release of chemical defenses, such as histamines, from mast cells. These chemical mediators are released as part of the body’s immune response to the foreign substance(s). As a result, these chemicals produce abnormal physical, physiological and psychological symptoms in the sensitive person.
What Causes Allergies?
The substances that cause an allergic reaction in people are known as allergens or antigens. Antigens, protein particles like pollen, food or dander enter our bodies through a variety of ways:
- Inhaled into the nose and the lungs. Airborne pollens of certain trees, grasses, weeds, house dust that include dust mite particles, mold spores, cat and dog dander and latex dust.
- Ingested by mouth. Shrimp, peanuts and other nuts are common food allergens.
- Injected. Examples include medications such as penicillin or other injectable drugs and venom from insect stings or bites.
- Absorbed through the skin. Plants such as poison ivy, sumac and oak and latex are common examples.
Additionally, various factors can cause allergies to occur, such as heredity, toxins from various sources, high stress that lowers the immune system causing the body to become weak and over-reactive, deficiency and malabsorption disorders, overexposure to toxic substances, emotional factors and traumas, toxins from physical exertion like excessive and vigorous exercise, and radiation such as excessive exposure to the sun and radioactive materials.