The answer might surprise you.
It’s allergy season again. Noses are dripping, eyes are watering, skin is itching, and lungs are wheezing all across America. And many people have the misconception that allergies are primarily controlled by these body parts where the reactions occur. Yet, allergies and allergic disorders are much more complex than that, and the root of the problem is actually based in a body system that most people don’t equate with allergies – the gut.
Sure, food allergies obviously involve the intestinal system, but so does every other allergic problem from nasal allergies to skin allergies to asthma. What is unique about the gut that makes it the center of attention? First, it’s the largest immune organ in the body; there are far more immune cells in the gastrointestinal tract than in the rest of the body as a whole. Yet, an even more important factor that regulates our immune and allergic systems is the myriad of healthy bacteria that live in our intestines.
These healthy germs, called probiotics or intestinal flora, are intimately connected to the health and function of our intestinal immune system. If these germs aren’t healthy and flourishing, allergic disorders flare up and take over.
Making wise health-care choices that limit antibiotic over-use, limiting unhealthy sugars in the diet, and eating healthy foods loaded with natural probiotics are just a few of the steps that allergy-suffers can take to improve their intestinal health.
The key to achieving relief from allergies isn’t to simply pop an antihistamine pill or puff on an inhaler so you feel better for twelve hours. These short-term treatments aren’t a long-term answer. Instead, focus on healthy diet and lifestyle choices to keep the gut healthy so you don’t have to suffer through this year’s allergy season. The Allergy Book in The Sears Parenting Library shows you how to find the right balance between the appropriate use of allergy medications and natural healthy living to achieve optimal immune health.
Dr. Bob Sears
Follow Dr. Bob’s Daily blog on his Dr. Bob Sears Facebook page.