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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Allergy Myths

Allergy myths – what is true and what is false?

book with magical properties about myths and facts on allergies

Every time you turn around someone you know is complaining about being allergic to this or allergic to that.  Hay fever alone now affects close to 60 million people in the U.S. The more you know about allergies the better you will be able to manage them. With so much information out there, some of it conflicting, it is important to know the facts.

True or false?  Cleaner is better. 


 A little dirt and germs are good for us.  It builds up your immune system, so you don't have to endlessly dust and bleach.  Instead, try a vacuum with a HEPA filter, change out your air duct filters and take off your shoes before you come into the house.  Remember, it’s the small tiny wind-pollinated allergens that cause us the most irritation. Reduce the pollen and increase the germs.

True or false? Pollen allergies only affect us in Spring?


One of the most common misconception about pollen and seasonal allergies is that the season is short. The spring allergy season can actually start in mid-February.  There are generally two peaks with pollen allergies: tree pollen (early in the season) and then the grass pollens which come out in late April and early May. The “Spring” allergy season can run as long as 5 months. 

True or false?  If you didn’t have allergies when you were little you won’t have them now that you are grown.


You can develop an allergic reaction to anything at any time.  It begins with exposure. Even if you've inhaled pollen or mold many times before with no trouble, at some point, for some reason, the body flags it as an intruder. During this particular exposure, the immune system studies the allergen. It readies itself for the next exposure by developing antibodies. Then, the next time you're exposed to the allergen, your immune system kicks into action, triggering a scratchy throat or runny nose.

True or false? Only take medications at the start of an allergic reaction?


The best way to get allergy relief is to take allergy remedies on a regular basis and start before pollen season hits.  Studies have shown people were able to increase their tolerance and reduce their body’s negative reaction by exposing themselves to tiny amounts of the allergen.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Honey and Pollen Allergies

Does Honey really help alleviate pollen allergies?

baking with honey

It sounds like a win/win situation.  Sweeten your teas and muffins with honey and cure your pollen allergies at the same time but the truth of the matter is honey probably does nothing to alleviate those itchy eyes and runny nose.
Still the idea isn't so far-fetched. Some experts point out that honey can contain traces of flower pollen — an allergen and one treatment for allergies is repeated exposure to small amounts of allergens.

In recent years, scientists have discovered that honey possesses some legitimately intriguing properties. Proteins secreted by honeybees, for instance, are mixed with the flower nectar bees use to produce honey, and science has recently discovered that one of these proteins, called “bee defensin-1” has significant antibacterial, anti fungal, and antiviral properties.

The misconception comes from the pollen the bees mostly carry back to the hive.  In the previous post we talked about insect pollinated vs. wind-pollinated? The pollen blowing in the wind (released by non-flowering trees, weeds, and grasses) is what triggers springtime allergies not the pollen in flowers carried by bees. So even local honey won’t have much, if any, of the type of pollen setting off your allergies.

Studies also show that bees don’t just bring flower pollen back to their honeycomb. They carry tree and grass pollen, in addition to mold spores, diesel particles, and other contaminants. Which means that it’s difficult to make a honey from just one kind of pollen (say, weeds and not grass). So, save your local honey for your tea and muffins, not for your allergy medicine cabinet.

If you want help from pollen allergies you need to try a product that consists of what a person is allergic to so the body becomes safely conditioned to tolerate those allergens and reduce allergic symptoms.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Pollen Allergies

Pollen allergies or as it is better known, Hay Fever, are directly related to things in our environment.

Lady with a close pin on her nose to keep out the pollen

Did you know Hay fever has nothing to do with hay?  It got its name because long ago farmers noticed that their symptoms of runny noses and itchy eyes occurred during the season of the spring hay harvest, and so they connected it with hay. When actually the watery eyes and sinus headaches are most often due to pollen from the beautiful plants and trees adorning your yard or neighborhood.

The best way to battle pollen allergies is to find out which pollens you are allergic to. An allergist is able to easily test you for various types of trees, weeds, and grasses, and provide you with a list of pollens that negatively affect your body.

Below are a few types of plants that are known to cause pollen allergies:

Trees:  Birch, Alder, Cedar, Hazelnut, Willow, Plane, Olive and Hornbeam Grasses:  Ryegrass &amp Timothy Weeds:  Ragweed, Nettle, Mugwort, Goosefoot abd Sorrel.

Depending on where you live, your individual sensitivity may differ dramatically. If a person lives in an area that has hot, dry, windy days, then there is more of a chance that pollen is in the air. Whereas if you live in areas where the air is cool or there are more rainy days, the pollen is washed to the ground and is less likely to affect you.

Tune into your local weather channel or get online to find out the days pollen count.  Allergy pollen counts allow you to see how you could be affected right in your own hometown. On days when the count is high you don’t have to suffer from pollen allergies or hay fever, which has nothing to do with hay.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Migration Allergies

Migration allergies are allergies that stop once you move to a different part of the country but develop from all new allergens in a few years after you've acclimated to your new environment.

migration allergies

"Snow birds" are migrating towards warmer climates. There's been a steady influx of people from all over the united states to the south and southwest. Often they rejoice too soon thinking they left not only the cold weather,but also their allergies, behind. The first few years of moving to a different climate, people can often be allergy symptom-free. Unfortunately, that usually only lasts a few years. Before they know it, migration allergies are hitting them like the rest of us.

After the first few years of migration or relocation, the immune system starts to adapt and change. People develop allergies to the trees, grasses and flowers of their new environment. Allergies are hard to escape for good. 20% of all people in the United States has allergies.

We have to remember that allergies are not caused by a weak immune system. On the contrary, the immune system is working too well and overreacting to allergens like pollen. This hyperactivity releases histamine which is the chemical that causes all those annoying symptoms. In the southwest, people react most often to the pollen from ragweed, olive trees, weeds, and grasses. Hay fever is probably the most common seasonal of desert migration allergies, with March through May being the height of the season.

Allergies are influenced by heredity and genetics, but it is possible to lessen your reaction to desert allergies. Following these 3 tips should help:

  • Keep car and house windows closed and with the air-conditioning on as needed.
  • Exercise keeps your immune system healthier. But avoid exercising outside during the morning and early afternoon hours during peak allergy season.
  • Supplements like Allergena - Allergy Relief can help improve your immune system and keep migration allergies at bay no matter where you move.
These 3 steps alone can reduce allergy symptoms by 50 percent. Even though you leave the bad weather, doesn't mean you've rid yourself of allergies for good.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Autumn Allergies

Autumn allergies can make life particularly miserable for some people, and fall is just around the corner.

autumn allergies

We are still in the peak of long, hot summer days. The last thing on our minds is the chill of autumn air. This is especially true if you are dealing with the allergies associated with summer and those of us allergic to grasses. But autumn is just around the corner. And autumn allergies can make life particularly miserable for some people. Autumn is officially weed allergy season.
“Ragweed pollen is one of the predominant allergens in the fall; it can cause rhinitis and trigger asthma, and it may make eczema worse or cause conjunctivitis,” says Dr. Ivan Chinn, professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and an immunology, allergy and rheumatology physician at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston.
Because of its abundance in the fall, ragweed has its own classification of severe autumn allergies. There are lots of different types of ragweed. Additionally, there are many other types of weeds releasing pollen airborne. This is the major reason doctors will just refer to them all as simply "general weeds" Nevertheless, when it comes to autumn allergies, 99% of the time, the person is allergic to ragweed. It is so prevalent, with so many people, that even when you get an itch in your mouth after eating an avocado or banana, ragweed pollen is to blame. This is due to cross-pollination of the crops.

Weed allergies are not the only allergen affecting us in the fall. Mold is also a major fall and late summer allergen. But unlike with weed allergies, mold spores lie dormant through winter until the spring. Weed allergies start in the fall and can affect us throughout the winter months.

So how do you prepare for these inevitable and approaching allergies? If you have autumn allergies, you can avoid the outdoors when your symptoms are exceptionally bad. Washing your hair at night and changing out of your clothing helps significantly. Pollen stays on hair and skin, causing more and more exposure each time you touch or brush your hair. Make sure you aren't contaminating your bedding or sleeping in contaminated bedding will help as well. Simple products like Allergena Trees, Weeds, or Grasses or Allergena Mold Mix taken as a daily sublingual supplement can prove to be a successful tool to keeping you symptom-free from autumn allergies. When you're dealing with any allergies, always remember that people with allergies tend to live longer than those without them. Allergies are not a disease, it's your body's best defense system at work.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Common Things That Can Make Your Allergies Worse

Having allergies is not fun, but there are some common things that can make your allergies worse.


If you have allergies, most likely you are well aware what is causing them. But there are a few things that may make your allergies worse without even realizing it. Learn how these common items may bring on allergies or worsen existing allergies.

Fruits and Veggies. You may have an allergic reaction to some of the fruits and vegetables you buy. It's referred to as oral-allergy syndrome. A protein found on the skin of some raw produce can trigger allergy symptoms such as an itchy throat and mouth. Peeling produce and even cooking can help remove the proteins. You might be better off avoiding that particular fruit or vegetable.
Contact Lenses. Contact lenses make absorbing pollens in air more likely. Tears allow allergens to get trapped under the lense causing eye irratation. Sticking with your glasses during allergy season works best to avoid these symptoms.
Stress. When you feel stressed or anxious, you are twice as likely to get allergy symptoms or your allergies will worsen. Find ways to relax and destress. It's not only better for your allergy symptoms, but great for your overall health.
Alcohol. Red Wine can make allergy symptoms worse. Sulfites found in wine and beer are the culprit. Some people are especially sensitive to sulfites and will experience worsening allergy symptoms after consuming it.
The Wrong Medication. Knowing which medication will work best for your allergies is important. Make sure you speak with your doctor to find out whether an antihistamine or decongestant is best for your particular allergies. Allergena Products work well on both fronts to eliminate allergy symptoms you're experiencing. Click here for more information on your particular zone and different Allergena Allergy products.
Perfume and Candles. The lining of the eyes and nose can be irritated with any types of perfumes. Perfumes and candles release these particles into the air increasing the chances for making your allergies worse.
Chlorine. Pools treated with chlorine can be a major cause of increased allergy symptoms for people. Chlorine is an irritating gas, and just being near the fumes is enough to bring on symptoms.
Clothing. Washing your clothes every time you wear them is crucial to removing pollen-causing allergies. Fabrics like wool allow allergens to remain on them because of the rough texture. Washing in hot water works best as well as wearing fabrics such as cotton.
Morning Showers. Pollen sticks to skin and hair easily. When you bathe in the morning you are going to bed with the allergens on your skin and hair from the night before. Bathe at night and go to bed in clean sheets and bedding. This helps to reduce lingering allergens clinging to your hair and clothing from the day.
Weather. Many of you already know that allergies are worse on dry, sunny and windy days. It is the perfect conditions for pollens to travel through the air. But light rain can stir up pollen as well.
Secondhand Smoke. People exposed to secondhand smoke have a higher incidence of allergies and worsening allergy symptoms. Smoke is an irritant that travels through the air that can affect your nasal and lung passageways. Keeping your exposure to a minimum will help fight off added symptoms.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Holistic or Homeopathic?

With the overabundance of conventional medicine on the market, many of us have considered trying a different approach such as holistic or homeopathic treatments, so what are the differences?

holistic or homeopathic

A doctor who practices holistic medicine combines modern Western treatment with alternative medicine. Alternative medicine being a complementary (additional) treatment. Examples of alternative medicine include treatments such as chiropractic, acupuncture or massage. A holistic doctor offers patients the options of traditional pharmaceutical drugs in addition to these alternative treatments. Some of the alternative treatment can, in fact, include a homeopathic remedy.

Homeopathic treatment falls under holistic treatment. This type of treatment offers medicine that considers and examines the person as a whole. It incorporates an individual's diet, emotional and mental state, what causes them stress, their activity level, and all of these aspects entirely. This helps to define the term "holistic." Homeopathy follows the notion that a tiny amount of what's bad for you is actually good for you. The body has the ability to heal itself when given the least amount of medicine. It also follows the principle of "like cures like." Homeopathic practitioners do not believe in a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to healing. They believe in a very individualized approach to making a person better. Homeopathic doctors deal with the underlying issues of a symptom versus just treating the symptom itself. They generally do not suggest the use of traditional medicine in their practice.

Most homeopathic doctors practice holistic medicine. Both homeopathic and holistic physicians will look at the whole picture in order to treat a patient or individual. Having an understanding which each practitioner does, and how they do i,t can help you make an informed decision for which one may best suit your needs. It ultimately depends on how you view treatment and what methods you are comfortable using. There has been a rise of homeopathic and holistic treatments worldwide. I believe this is due to a distrust in "Big Pharma" and the desire to bring us back to natural healing. Allergena offers homeopathy treatments for allergy sufferers individually based on your particular symptoms. The one-size-fits-all method has taken on skepticism in traditional medicine because we are realizing each of us may have different underlying symptoms. So why wouldn't we use individualized treatment methods?