Watery/itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing, difficulty breathing, and an itchy throat are all symptoms of seasonal allergies, and they are becoming more and more common.
Why do we suddenly start to experience seasonal allergies after decades of not having them? It’s all in the breakdown of your gut.
Seasonal allergies, along w/ common food allergies/intolerance, have been on the rise over the last few decades. This can all be traced back to a compromised immune system. And remember, 70% of the immune system is housed in the gut, so really, it stems from a compromised gut.
Your immune system is designed to fight off disease, viruses, and anything it deems as an invader or pathogen. When it senses something “dangerous” it becomes inflamed (on high alert) in order to fight off the invader.
Inflammation, in healthy doses, is REALLY important for our body. It keeps us healthy!
Unfortunately, the lifestyle that many American’s have adopted over the last few decades have created consistent inflammation.
If we are constantly feeding our body processed food, feeling stressed, and not getting sleep, our immune system will constantly be sending out an inflammatory response. Even normal, healthy foods and environmental elements start to be seen as an invader. Our immune system starts worrying about things that are typically healthy and your body becomes inflamed.
This inflammation from common environmental elements and food manifests itself as an allergic reactions.
Start supporting your immune system by healing your gut.
If you are struggling with irritating and uncomfortable seasonal allergies, start by nourishing your gut. As mentioned above, 70% of you immune system is held in the gut. If your gut is imbalanced, your immune system will be as well, leading to more inflammation and allergies.
Eat lots of fiber–
Fruits, veggies, whole grains, beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds have lots of fiber. You want 80% of your food to be fiber rich food. The more fiber in your diet, the more prebiotic bacteria you take in. The more prebiotics you have in your gut, the healthier it will become.
Eat some fermented foods-
Kimchi, sauerkraut, apple cider vinegar, and organic miso are all great fermented foods to consume. They bring probiotic bacteria into your gut. The more probiotics you have, the healthier your gut will be.
Limit your over the counter medication use-
It’s hard to do this when you are in the middle of allergy season. However, dosing yourself with a daily allergy medication can do more harm than good. The medications are made to calm down the inflammatory response, treating the symptom, not the cause. You might feel better, but nothing is being done to fix the problem.
Also, taking consistent medication has been shown to further damage our gut lining, making our imbalanced gut even more imbalanced, exacerbating the issue.
There was a time in my late 20’s when I developed some serious seasonal allergy issues. So much so I was prescribed an inhaler because of my difficulty breathing, nasal spray, and told to take Claritin daily. I was on this cycle for years and, like clockwork, each spring my allergies got worse and an more intense. I was simply making the symptoms more comfortable by taking the medication.
It wasn’t until I started healing my gut (which at the time I didn’t realize was connected to my allergies) that I stopped experiencing the symptoms. It’s now been at least 5 years since I’ve had any kind of seasonal allergy flare up and I can 100% attribute that to gut health.