Allergies increasingly influence the everyday life of many people.
Why is it that adults who never had any allergic symptoms are increasingly affected?
Explained in simple words, you could say that allergies are an overreaction of our immune system. The defense system of the body reacts to substances (e.g. birch pollen) which are actually completely harmless to the body. One possible explanation for this is our diet. Here are some amazing figures:
A 70kg man is composed of 12 trillion cells, his intestines are populated by 100 trillion microbes, of which about 500 species are known. Some of these germs support our digestion, but others are parasites that harm us and live at the expense of our health. The skin surface of this 70kg man amounts to only 2 square meters, but the surface of the entire intestinal system is 300 to 400 square meters. This explains why 80% of our adaptive immune system originates from the contact with germs from in the intestines and not through contact with germs from the air. Consequently, 70 to 90% of our immune cells are constantly active in our intestinal wall. Only 10 to 30% of our immune cells protect us against germs that we absorb through the skin and the respiratory tract.
These are certainly the very interesting figures, but what do they have to do with allergies?
We consume milk and wheat products and beef and pork in large quantities. Agriculture and animal husbandry has only been known to mankind for about 10,000 years. This is only 0.2% of the time, that man and pre-human have existed on this planet.
We eat huge amounts of proteinaceous products. Such unbalanced food in such quantities was unknown to our ancestors. As we cook these foods or fry them, they lose more valuable enzymes that are needed in digestion. Now our immune system becomes active because it has to process our food through the intestinal wall, while holding back germs. The immune system is overwhelmed and begins to classify also food as harmful. The result is food intolerance. This can occur along with complete freedom from symptoms and remain undetected for decades. But it will lead over time to various diseases such as:
- allergies, atopic dermatitis, asthma, susceptibility to infections
- other chronic diseases such as sinus infections, eczema, inflammatory bowel disease or acne
- undefined complaints and general malaise
There is another important factor. Our modern diet is deficient in omega-3 fatty acid, which is incorporated into the body's own enzymes and inhibits inflammation. This lack supports the overreaction of the immune system because allergies, asthma and eczema are mainly inflammatory reactions.
In recent years, another cause of neurodermatitis became apparent that originates in our intestines. Intestinal fungi called Candida and a harmless skin fungus are alike as twins. If our immune system fights the intestinal fungus, because it occurs in too large quantities, it can result in an overreaction that might create neurodermatitis. The emergence of neurodermatitis has many causes, in other words, sometimes food is the sole cause, but often not. Overgrowth of the intestines with harmful microbes can generally trigger a variety of diseases.
Other influences are, for example, environmental toxins. The immune system is additionally burdened by poisons, which may accelerate a disease. A drastic example is automobile exhaust. Before 1990 in the DDR there were far fewer people suffering from allergies than in Germany. With the opening of the wall, suddenly the strain through traffic exhaust was increased. Now in the ”new countries” there are almost as many people suffering from allergies as in the old federal states.
How can naturopathic and conventional medicine help?
Laboratory diagnosis: This is a way to determine both the colonization of the intestines with germs as well as the intolerance of foods.
Change of diet: A change of diet based on the results of laboratory tests alone often causes miracles.
Symbiosis: This refers to a form of therapy, which treats the overgrowth of the intestines with harmful germs.
Acupuncture: A very successful treatment for allergic diseases, especially when combined with a homeopathic treatment.
Detoxification measures: relieve and strengthen the immune system.
Omega-3 fatty acid or Egyptian black cumin oil: They start working only after one to three months, but then they are persistently successful. Therefore, it is recommended to take them from the very beginning in addition to other therapeutic procedures.
Conventional medicine: It is also making good progress. Modern antihistamines (no cortisone!) are to be taken only once a day, they work all day and are well tolerated. The downside, however, is that these drugs only suppress the symptoms, but do not address the underlying disease. Therefore they have to be taken every year for the duration of the allergy season.
Which therapy is the right one for you? This always has to be clarified in a personal conversation based on a detailed anamnesis and diagnosis.
House dust and mites allergies: One of the most common allergies is the house dust and mite allergy. In Germany there are about 4 to 8 million people suffering from house dust allergy. Therefore, we look at it separately in this context. People do not have allergic reactions to mites but to the excrement of mites. Approximately 10 million mites live in a mattress.
What helps against house dust and mite allergy?
Important measures are climate and cleaning because mites don’t like cold temperatures below 18 ° C. It is very helpful to expose sheets and mattress on a cold winter day for a few hours to the frost. Another useful tool comes from herbal medicine. It is the oil of the neem tree. The neem tree is known for millennia in Ayurvedic medicine.
Its active ingredients are harmless to humans and pets. Neem tree oil does not act as a neurotoxin like other insecticides. It affects the development, growth and reproduction of mites. The compatibility of neem tree oil proved excellent and even with extremely hypersensitive people it caused no reactions.
The application of neem tree oil is simple. After two sprayings of mattresses, blankets, pillows and cushions a reapplication is needed after one year.
Mites or pollen are not the cause of an allergy but merely the trigger. The root cause lies in an abnormal over-reaction of the immune system. Therefore, it is not simply a matter of avoiding contact with the mites or other allergens. Nevertheless, one should not underestimate the benefits of allergen avoidance