allergies and the gut

Allergies and Gut Health

Allergies and Gut Health: Strategies for Alleviation and Support

As the beauty of spring unfolds, so does the onset of seasonal allergies for many individuals. While the physical symptoms of allergies are widely known, their impact on mental health, and gut health is often overlooked. This is why we cannot go past looking into the link between seasonal allergies, mental well-being, and gut health.

Mind-Gut Allergy – It’s All Connected:

We are all aware that our immune system protects us from getting sick with colds and flu, but did you know that the immune system can be responsible for allergies, both food and seasonal/environmental? The immune system dictates whether the body needs to defend itself against the food or environmental substance causing the response and symptoms.

The gut-immune connection comes in as the largest density of immune cells in the small intestine. Therefore, poor gut health affects the largest portion of our immune system, which then causes an allergic response.

Allergy Support

1. Support and heal the gut

Aim: Support the gut to help break down excess histamine production and therefore, reduce the allergy response. An impaired gut or leaky gut means more histamines can cross over from the gut into the body’s systemic circulation, causing a histamine response in the gut like nausea, cramping, and sensitivities to certain foods.

  • Improve gut microbes: Studies have shown that an imbalance of gut microbes exacerbates allergy symptoms
  • Allergy symptoms occur from an excess of histamines, therefore ensuring optimal enzyme function to assist the breakdown of histamines and histamine-rich foods
  • Reduce alcohol, which is known to cause damage to the gut and increase allergy symptoms

2. Lower histamine exposure

As you would know from all of our general gut healing talks, an important step is always to reduce triggers. In this instance, we want to lower our histamine exposure so that our bodies can settle back down. These foods, although we usually say are great for gut healing, may just need to be reduced while the body is in an overreactive state, as they are high in histamines.

Foods to reduce:

  • Fermented foods (sauerkraut, tofu, yeast spreads like Vegemite, miso, yoghurt, and tamari)
  • Fermented drinks (kombucha, kefir, and alcohol)
  • Aged foods (cheese, overripe fruits, leftovers, bone broths, pickles, or canned)
  • Leftovers – the longer they are in the fridge, the higher the histamine content. Eat fresh or frozen food as quickly as possible
  • Cured, smoked, or processed meats (salami, ham, sausages)
  • Citrus fruits and juice (orange, pineapple, lime)
Natural Remedies for Allergy Relief

Some natural remedies that can provide relief from allergy symptoms while supporting overall well-being?

  • Digestive enzymes: taken to support the optimal digestion of foods, especially those high in histamines, but also the absorption of nutrients that help support allergy reduction, food-allergy symptom relief, and gut healing
  • Probiotics: specific strains have been shown in clinical trials to positively impact allergies. These strains include:
    • Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG has been shown to reduce the incidence of allergies especially conjunctivitis, asthma, and atopic dermatitis. Also, may improve cow’s milk tolerance in children, therefore reducing gut inflammation and permeability
    • Other helpful strains include Bifido Breve and Lactobacillus Paracaei LP-33
  • Vitamin C: has been shown to support allergic reactions, as long as people are able to reduce their medication when taking Vitamin C. Chat to your health professional for the right type and dosage
  • Vitamin D: getting that sunshine on your exposed skin is so important for optimal Vitamin D and therefore optimal immune response. Also, ask your doctor to check your levels next time you get blood done, as many people are deficient

 

Remember by taking a holistic approach that addresses gut health, mental well-being, and stress reduction can be the most effective relief from allergies and enhance your quality of life.

 

Love Alissa ❤

 

 

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