Today, 20% of North Americans suffer from allergies—hay fever, asthma, and allergic rhinitis (runny nose, itchy eyes). Common allergens are pollen, dust, dust-mites, animal dander, insect bites, prescription medicines and chemicals used in cleaning products.
Historically, it was thought that the immune system was originally programmed to respond to parasitic invasions and that in the absence of parasites, has become over-reactive to less dangerous invaders. Allergens may damage our intestinal lining leading to an increase in the absorption of toxins, bacteria, yeast, and undigested food. This leads to a general increase in inflammation and the production of white blood cells which can damage other tissues.
Do you, or someone you know, suffer from headaches, fatigue, constant sneezing, runny eyes, intestinal problems or skin rashes? You could be suffering from hidden food allergies. Hidden allergies can increase the symptoms of kidney disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, pain, weight loss or gain, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, migraines and chronic bronchitis.
If the body is already very toxic, the immune system has difficulty distinguishing between harmful and non-harmful substances. Our immune systems are chronically overworked, dealing with exposure to antibiotics, hormones, mercury dental fillings, fluoride and chlorine in our water, estrogen-laced plastics, as well as childhood vaccination exposures.
Severe allergic responses (anaphylaxis, life-threatening responses) caused by bee stings, medications (penicillin), vaccinations (diphtheria, tetanus) and foods such as citrus, strawberry, brazil nuts, peanuts, shellfish and chocolate are IgE mediated responses (i.e., immediate response). Other allergic reactions are mediated in the gut by IgG, IgM and IgA and are driven by volume and frequency and may manifest as stomach aches, diarrhea, irritable bowel, difficulty concentrating and hyperactivity in children. Scratch tests confirm IgE mediated responses. Detoxification protocols that are hypoallergic by withdrawing the major food allergens, with a three week re-entry program can identify any hidden food allergens.
Think you might have allergies? Look in the mirror. Do you have dark circles under your eyes, swollen watery red-rimmed eyes, red burning ears, chronically runny, itchy nose which you rub constantly, chronic throat infections, eczema, hives or other rashes, diarrhea, gas, nausea, constipation, abdominal distention or heartburn, excessive sweating or drooling, headaches, vertigo, joint or muscle pain, fatigue, poor memory, bedwetting in children or mood swings. If you have answered yes to a number of these symptoms, consult your Naturopathic Doctor for an effective treatment plan.