So what do we do?
How do we escape the suffering caused by allergens and reach freedom from allergies?
Our doctors have written articles below to help inform you of the cutting edge allergy treatments available at NFC as well as the ones that have successfully been in practice in our clinic for over two decades.
A is for ALLERGY
by Dr. Jesika DiCampli
Is there relief and effective treatment for allergies?
An Allergy is your immune system's abnormal overreaction to contact with a specific substance. It's your body's reaction and the histamine it releases, that cause the symptoms of rhinitis (sneezing, coughing, fatigue, headache, skin rash, wheezing, stuffy or runny nose, and itchy watery eyes)
The conventional relief of allergies relies on treating the symptoms by taking decongestants and antihistamines. Decongestants open clogged nasal passages and have a drying action. Antihistamines suppress the body's release of histamine. These medications may have side effects such as drowsiness.
Diet and quality nutrition is the most important factor
If your diet is lacking basic and vital nutrients you are more susceptible to allergies. Persons suffering from allergies have been found to be deficient in every nutrient requirement. So if you can supply the body with what it is missing the allergies often disappear. The necessary nutrients can be obtained by eating a well balanced diet of raw and unprocessed, whole foods that grow in the ground such as fresh fruit and vegetables especially those high in vitamin C.
Vitamin C is very important in regards to allergy because when there are deficient levels of vitamin C one becomes particularly susceptible to allergens. It is a powerful histamine stabilizer so it has a natural anti-histamine action and detoxifies foreign substances entering the body. What is an appropriate dose of Vitamin C? It depends on the person and how deficient the cells are in the body. A simple urine test can determine levels of Vitamin C. If you get too much Vitamin C the body will tell you by causing some loose stool or diarrhea. Reduce the amount to the correct level for you so that this does not happen.
Histamine and Ascorbic Acid in Human Blood
C. Alan B. Clemetson
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, The Methodist Hospital, 506 Sixth St., Brooklyn, NY 11215
Analysis of 437 human blood samples has shown that when the plasma-reduced ascorbic acid level falls below 1 mg/100 ml, the whole blood histamine level increases exponentially as the ascorbic acid level decreases. When the ascorbic acid level falls below 0.7 mg/100 ml, there is a highly significant increase in the blood histamine level. Oral administration of ascorbic acid (1 g daily for 3 days) to 11 selected volunteers resulted in a reduction of the blood histamine level in every instance.
Other Foods, Plants, & Bioflavanoids
Garlic, onion, papaya, oranges, bell pepper, cayenne pepper, guava and watercress are all high in vitamin C. Supplements of Nettles (Urtica dioica) are an excellent addition to anti allergy treatment.
Eating foods or supplementing with plants that have high concentrations of compounds such as quercitin also assists in restoring the immune systems normal function. Quercitin, a bioflavonoid, retards inflammation reactions which is a large portion of the allergic process. A great allergy supplement will have VIT C, BIOFLAVANOIDS, & NETTLES as its base…
Immune System Boosting & Balancing
The long term goal of allergy therapy is to restore the body to its normal function. This is a gradual process that can be achieved through the use of adrenal adaptogenic herbs, nutrient support, stress reduction, detoxification, and immune strengthening. It is possible to be allergy free!!
Kiss Your Allergies Bye Bye!
by Dr. Jonathan Psenka
Are you looking for a way to permanently get rid or of your seasonal allergies? In the past the only medical solution for allergy desensitization included visits to an allergist’s office and receiving a series of painful shots every two weeks. After a year or two of these shots it was possible to “train” your body to stop reacting to the allergic substances in your environment. Aside from being both painful and costly, this approach did help a great many people.
Those allergy shots of the past may soon be no more. A new treatment called sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) is rapidly becoming the preferred way to eliminate allergies. This new treatment utilizes the blood vessels underneath the tongue as a way to introduce minute dosages of allergy-causing substances into the body, instead of using allergy shots These small dosages gradually “re-train” the body’s immune system to stop viewing the allergic substances as a problem, and to begin seeing them as a normal part of the environment. This s basically the same mechanism of action as the old allergy shots- except for the shot part!
There are several companies preparing sublingual immunotherapy vaccines, but not all make similar products. Some companies use a “master mix,” which takes all of the potential allergens and puts them together in a single solution. However, researchers from several sources, including the American Association of Otolaryngic Allergists, have published concerns with this approach. First, certain types of allergens can cross-react in solution, severely decreasing the potency of the medication. Second, because master mix solutions contain a large variety of allergic substances, it is likely that there will be some things present in the solution that the person is not allergic to. These substances may have the ability to work as “sensitizers,” potentially initiating an allergy.
One company, seroSLIT, takes a more personal approach to sublingual immunotherapy. This company makes customized SLIT vaccines for patients that are based on each patient’s unique allergies. This is accomplished by using a specific blood test called an ImmunoCap analysis. This test measures a person’s antibodies to specific allergens, which can be used to determine not only what someone is allergic too, but also how severe their allergy may be. Using these results your physician can work with seroSLIT to make a custom sublingual allergy vaccine containing only the relevant allergens.
Taking the SLIT vaccine couldn’t be easier. Simply spray the solution under your tongue, that’s it. Used correctly these vaccines can help control allergic symptoms in a matter of months, but for best results should be used for a year or two. After that time your allergies should disappear! The best part of SLIT- in addition to being painless and working well- is that it is extremely safe, even for children. For more information about this new therapy visit www.seroslit.com or ask any of the doctors in our office.
Chocolate and Depressive Symptoms
by Ross Kerievsky
An interesting study in the news was just released looking at the affects of chocolate consumption and depressed mood. Many of us have either known “chocoholics” or consider themselves one. This study looked at whether the consumption of chocolate actually helps with mood or is potentially a contributor of why someone is depressed.
At first, I thought the answer to this study was obvious. Most of us think of reaching of a comfort food, (very often chocolate), if they are in a poor mood or depressed. There are many chemicals in chocolate that can help people be more alert and have a sense of well being.
The study was published in the Archives of Internal Medicine where they tested this hypothesis on approximately 1000 patients with either diabetes or coronary heart disease. All patients were not taking antidepressant medication. The interesting results showed that the patients that ate more chocolate had a higher score on their depression questionnaires than the other participants.
While this study was interesting, I feel that it should be taken with a grain of salt. More studies would be needed for there to be a conclusive result that eating high amounts of chocolate actually cause depression. Chocolate actually has many beneficial properties and a good amount of anti-oxidants. Till the time where a study conclusively states there is a problem eating chocolate, I say consume with moderation.