We get a ton of these questions every year… this time of year… “I don’t think I have allergies? Do I? Have I acquired them?”
The answer is yes… kind of… for almost everybody. I never had any issues, then sixteen years ago, as I was setting up the first HealthSprout office, it hit me. A brain tumor.
Well, it felt like it must be a brain tumor… I mean come on! I couldn’t turn my head without getting dizzy, there was some odd pressure, but no headache… what else could cause this?
Well, I took a decongestant after four days of dealing with my tumor symptoms, and it all went away in an instant.
“Huh… who would have thought that??”
So the point was made. In some instances, a little medication might be ok… but as time has gone on, I have found other more natural solutions. One of the most commonly used solutions that really seems to work pretty well, our essential oils. Eucalyptus, peppermint, thyme, oregano… to name a few, and there are still others that might work better for you. I have found these to be very helpful with myself.
But the question remains. Do I have allergies?
Well, it was about eight years after that first instance, that I had that level of response again. Runny nose this time, with head pressure, and the same feeling of dizziness. Since then, I typically get a little response, a couple days, maybe a couple weeks some years. But I find that there are key triggers, meaning, not just the environment.
Certain inflammatory foods will impact my response. Stay clean, avoiding grains and sugars, as well as reducing certain proteins for me, and I do better. Add sugar, and I can typically feel it worsen. There has been a decent amount of research that shows those with environmental allergies will typically be more responsive to certain foods and vice versa. The argument suggests that if you tighten up your diet, that you would be less likely to experience seasonal allergies, at any level. Pretty interesting.
So the question then remains, do you have allergies?
The cool thing to understand that in all diagnoses, you are simply on a spectrum. Today you have asthma, six years of no inhaler use and you don’t, three years of slipping back and you do… its always a spectrum. And with all health pursuits, where you are on the spectrum is highly related to your pursuit of health. The same with allergies.
If you walk though a building being constructed, during the phase where drywall is being sanded, you will have a need to increase mucous production. The body will attempt to flush the garbage getting stuck in your mucous linings. Now take that molecule down in size by a tenth, so it can permeate much deeper into mucous linings, and the body’s necessary response is upped a notch. This is an allergy response to pollen.
Reduce the inflammation that the body is already experiencing, and it is under control.
You see, in this instance, it isn’t a true response of the immune system, but rather the excretory system. Even though there are anti-bodies in the mucous, it isn’t produced because of a need or the thought that the body needs to do battle, but rather that it needs to cleanse. Take another example, where these same molecules of pollen cause pressure in the head and neck, but in addition, they cause stiffness in the joints, and perhaps some pain in other parts of the body. Itching in the eyes, and elsewhere in the body… signs that the immune system is producing a significant amount of histamine. This is more allergic than simply cleansing.
So do you have allergies? Well maybe, but it is a hard question. Kind of like asking if you have an ear infection just because there was fluid seen with otoscope inspection on the far side of the eardrum. Hard to call it infection, when the only sign is pressure.
We often jump to conclusions, and there is a great value to the medical model to instantaneously adopt the worst case scenario. Striking fear into the hearts of people makes them easier to control, and more likely to run scared and medicate. There is a certain point where trusting the body a little, will produce a significantly greater instance of health.
Last Thursday I brought my daughter home early from school, and then medicated her for a basic symptom, for the first time in her life. A headache with pain in her left eye. The over the counter sinus med brought nearly immediate relief. She took more the following evening. And that has been it, so I believe she is done. We have been diffusing oils into her room for the last week and a half to help target this, as we were seeing signs that she was responding to the irritants in the environment. But the key for us, is that we see this as an opportunity to help her find out why, and to see if we can help her become less responsive.
All about pursuing health.
Hope it helps you navigate some decisions! Be well and be blessed! - Dr. E