Try supporting your immune system with these helpful tips.
As wonderful as Spring can be, the change of season can also bring about sneezing, runny noses and puffy eyes for many individuals…oh, those darn allergies! While over-the-counter medications might be helpful for managing allergic symptoms, they do little to help resolve the root of the problem and promote sustained quality of life.
What are allergies?
Allergies are a result of an abnormal immune system response to allergens in your environment (i.e. dust, pollen, animal dander, foods). Your immune system mistakenly believes that the substance is harmful to your body, and consequently prompts a cascade of inflammatory markers involved in the allergic response.
How can you prevent allergies?
Though environmental allergies are quite common, and dusts and pollen are all around – it is still possible to take a proactive approach towards preventing allergies before they start. Try supporting your immune system with these helpful tips:
- Keep the air as clean as possible - try an air purifier and avoid scents in your home. If burning wood in a fireplace or stove, ensure that it is free of moulds and other potentially harmful agents.
- Identify and remove food allergies and/or sensitivities like dairy or gluten. The majority of immune tissue is present in your gut, which means that if chronic, low level inflammation is present, it can significantly decrease your immune function.
- To minimize symptoms, avoid histamine-containing foods like: beer & wine, aged or fermented cheeses, dried fruits (i.e. prunes, apricots, raisins), processed meats, vinegar-containing foods and condiments (i.e. mustard, mayo, salad dressings).
- Take probiotics to help encourage a healthy gut and robust immune function.
- Omega 3s like fish, flaxseed, and walnuts act to decrease inflammation and modulate the immune response.
- Vitamin C can help to minimize allergy symptoms, while also enhancing immune function.
- Quercitin, a potent flavinoid, has antioxidant properties that stabilizes mast cells and is a natural anti-histamine. Speak to your ND about appropriate dosing.