Got allergies? Some tips to help you

If you are here looking for natural solutions for your seasonal allergies, I'm so glad you are here!

When I approach allergies, I use a two-pronged approach - a long-term prong which I know will take consistent effort, time, and patience to see results, and a short-term prong which brings more immediate relief.
 
Please recognize that nothing, even in the short-term prongs listed below, will work like an antihistamine medication, which is a concentrated pharmaceutical agent.

The steps do, however, add up and together, over time, they can bring about some symptom relief - as always, none of this is medical advice and you should always consult your medical doctor before undertaking any lifestyle changes or starting a new supplement. 

 

Short term tips for symptom relief

There are foods and herbs that have been found to lower inflammation and help with allergy symptoms: 

  • Eat quercetin-rich foods: onions (particularly yellow), capers, apples, grapes, tea (click here for my favorite toxin screened teas, use PLATEFULHEALTH to get a discount), berries. In general, plant foods contain flavonoids and vitamin C which have a synergistic action. So load up on colorful fruits and veggies.

 
 
  • Reducing inflammatory foods: processed foods, refined sugar (found in packaged foods like cereal, granola bars, yogurt), omega 6 rich oils like sunflower, animal products which as discussed above are a source of LPS and other inflammatory compounds like Neu5GC.

 
  • Use an Air Filter and change your HVAC air filters at home every 2-3 months.  One of the most useful tools we've incorporated is a professional air filter. This not only helps to filter out allergens but also toxins in the air like VOCs, PM2.5 particles from cooking which can damage our health. I love the Air doctor because it provides amazing performance at affordable prices. It has an Ultra-HEPA filter, capable of capturing particles down to 0.003 microns i.e. 100x more effective than ordinary HEPA filters which can only capture down to 0.3 microns. 

Get up to $300 OFF Air Doctor via my affiliate link here.  

 
 
  • Nasal saline irrigation and showering soon after coming indoors - studies have shown that saline nasal irrigation can reduce nasal irritation and mucous production - please make sure you follow proper instructions to do this properly as improper use can increase the risk of infections. I use Neilmed from Costco. 

 
  • Some supplements that may be helpful are listed below. I am unable to advise whether these are suitable for you because I am not your doctor, but provide these as a guide for you to discuss with your own health care provider. Please do not start any supplements without consulting your doctor first:

    1.  Leefy Organics - This is a turmeric/ginger tincture that I use as pain relief but also helps us lower inflammation - both turmeric and ginger are powerful anti-inflammatory foods, and this tincture combines these in a bioavailable and synergistic form to help reduce inflammation (affiliate code: Platefulhealth for 15% off your first order)

2. Stinging nettle, Quercetin, bromelain, and NAC - may be helpful to reduce inflammation and there is some weak evidence that stinging nettle can help with seasonal allergies. D-Hist by Orthomolecular has all of these in one supplement, and it works well. However, it does carry a Prop65 warning label so if you take a lot of it, perhaps consider discussing it with your doctor. Keep in mind that most of our food is contaminated with heavy metals now, so it's important not to panic unnecessarily and instead look at your overall toxic load, reduce that and weigh up the pros and cons of all supplementations. 

3. Butterbur - in a randomized controlled trial of 131 patients, butterbur was found to be as effective as cetirizine (an anti-histamine) in seasonal allergic rhinitis - check with your doctor before using this as there are interactions. 

4. Tasha Rose Victory Elixir helps my son a lot - it contains astragalus which helps to modulate the immune system; stinging nettle which can help with allergic symptoms, and other anti-inflammatory herbs. I start my husband and son on this 1 month before allergy season, and they take it almost every day until allergy season is over. 

5. I also love Organic Olivia's Spring Defence - it has stinging nettle plus a combination of other airway supporting herbs, and lots of my clients swear by it. She also has great formulations to support the liver, and digestion. 

 
Now... pull up a chair and let's look at WHY allergic diseases are on the rise.... 
 
ROOT CAUSES OF ALLERGIES

The truth is that many people see seasonal allergies as a diagnosis or a 'condition', but really, it is a result of a whole system imbalance from an interplay between:

  • Genetics

  • Gut microbiome

  • Our environment (our diet, sleep, toxin exposure etc)

Basically, our immune system is confused, and it is now reacting to something we have traditionally been able to tolerate e.g. pollen, food. 

Herbal remedies and supplements listed above, whilst they are 'natural' and may help with symptom relief are just another bandaid. We shouldn't have to rely on herbal remedies and supplements for the rest of our lives.

So instead, I am encouraging you to ask WHY. If you have any symptoms, ask WHY, what is my body trying to tell me. 

Our bodies never 'malfunction' - allergies don't just come out of nowhere because our immune system made a mistake. With allergic diseases (eczema, asthma, hayfever, food allergies) at epidemic levels, we have to ask WHY. 

What is going on at the root? This is what I think:
  1. Environmental toxins can lead to activation and confusion of our immune system, leading to an imbalance. Numerous studies have shown an association between things like phthalates and BPA with allergic diseases - the laundry list of chemicals that can do this doesn't stop here. In my opinion, it's important to reduce your toxic load if you have chronic diseases.  
  2. Leaky gut and gut dysbiosis (unhealthy gut microbiome) due to environmental toxins, diet, stress can lead to immune activation and imbalance.
  3. Nutritional deficiencies and inflammatory foods contribute to immune imbalance
  4. Stress, lack of sleep contribute to immune imbalance. 

Gut health is linked to allergies?

When my kids were little and I talked to their allergists about gut health, I was laughed at. But I knew I was onto something. 

Studies have linked antibiotic and antacid use in infancy with childhood allergic diseases such as eczema, asthma, and allergic rhinitis. Both of these medications can throw off our gut microbiome.  (Not saying don't take antibiotics - please follow your doctor's advice, antibiotics can be life-saving, and you can always repair your gut health after your life has been saved).

In addition, we know that the integrity of our gut barrier plays an important role in food allergies. It also appears our gut microbiome has a lot to do with 'training' our immune system and so a disturbance there can predispose to allergies.  This does not mean you should run out and take probiotics - there is no evidence that probiotics can 'improve' our gut microbiome or increase microbiome diversity (in fact, it might well do the opposite). Specific strains of bacteria in the form of probiotics have been identified to deliver specific benefits e.g. for IBS, travelers' diarrhea, but these are strain-specific and you should work with your doctor to see if you need them. Not everyone benefits from a probiotic. It's not a panacea for gut health. 

 

If you want to learn how to heal your gut PROPERLY, I have a FREE guide and email masterclass here

 

Both of my kids had severe food allergies when they were infants - my daughter has completely outgrown hers, including an anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and eggs. My son has gone from having 9 IgE-mediated food allergies down to 3... we still have work to do on him. And yes it is hard work, A LOT of hard work and an overhaul of our entire lifestyle - but this is true healing... getting to and addressing root causes.

I truly believe working on their gut health and reducing toxic load were two BIG fascets to their healing. 

  

I want to emphasize that I am not anti-medications. If you have severe allergies, please do anti-histamines. However, I believe that addressing root causes can occur alongside modern, western medicine. 

Things I did to help my family with allergies

These are the things I implemented when helping my children with their food allergies - none of these are magic cures, and it takes time to see an effect. In fact, it took 2-3 years before I REALLY saw an improvement in their health.

I also cannot promise you that food allergies can be reversed - because everyone is different and I don't know your unique circumstances, and for that reason, I always recommend working with an integrative health MD and taking advice from them. What I am sharing here is for general information and not medical advice. 

1) Optimize gut health - I have a whole module on gut health in my Detox Right Course because it is the foundation to health. I also have a Gut health Guide and email masterclass

2) Reduce Toxic Load - one of the reasons I talk about environmental toxins so much is because they have been shown to affect our immune and gut health. Since allergies are closely tied to immune and gut health, reducing toxin exposure and existing body load is a key step I took in helping my kids with their allergies.

I know I passed on a lot of toxicity to my kids when I was pregnant with them. I had a lot of health issues and didn't make the connection that these indicated a high toxic load. This is why I am so passionate about sharing tips on my instagram page - because I truly believe it is important and will help those who are not aware.

If you want all the information in one place and take a deeper dive, I have a whole module taking you through how to detox your home step by step in my Detox Right Course. I also teach you how to optimize your body's detox organs.

If you are just starting out, check out my resources section for some quick guides. 

3) Optimize nutrition - nutrition is what fuels our body. Many people are micronutrient deficient because of a standard American diet. Nutrients that have been shown to support a healthy immune system: Vitamin A, D, omega 3s, zinc, selenium. I also love incorporating fermented foods as a source of probiotics - unlike probiotic pills, a piece of kimchi can contain hundreds of different strains of bacteria, and I try to incorporate 3-4 different types of fermented foods into my diet. 

 

So there you have it, my two-pronged natural, holistic approaches to allergies. If you are not on my email list, be sure to sign up so you never miss helpful information like this. 

 

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