Allergies exist in many different forms. Allergies, including allergic rhinitis, affect an estimated 100 million people in the world with approximately about 1 in 5 people having some form of allergy.
Most allergies interfere with day-to-day activities or lessen the quality of life. An allergy is an immune response or bodily reaction to substances that are usually not harmful.
Both genes and environment play a role. If both your parents have allergies, there is a good chance that you have them, too. The immune system normally protects the body against harmful substances, such as bacteria and viruses. It also reacts to foreign substances called allergens. These are usually harmless and in most people do not cause a problem. In a person with specific allergies, the immune response is oversensitive. When it recognizes an allergen, the immune system launches a response. Chemicals called histamines are released. These chemicals cause allergy symptoms.
Common allergens include:
- Insect venom
- Pet and other animal dander
Mostly, the part of the body the allergen touches displays the symptoms you develop. For example:
Allergens that you breathe in result in a stuffy nose, itchy nose and throat, mucus, cough, and wheezing.
Allergens that touch the eyes may cause itchy, watery, red, swollen eyes.
Consumption of foods allergic to your system can cause nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, cramping, diarrhea, or in extreme cases fatal reactions.
Drug allergies usually involve the whole body and can lead to a variety of symptoms.
At times, an allergy can trigger a response that involves the entire body.
Tips for Preventing Allergies
Curtail Untidiness: Avoid dusty areas and minimize extra clutter from your house, which attracts dust and dirt, like old books, dried flowers, old soft toys, etc.
Set up an Air Filter at Home: Keeping the air unsoiled at home can bring relief from dust-mites, pet dander, and pollen. If you choose to use an air filter at home, keep the doors closed.
Rinse with Saline Water Before Allergy Symptoms Wallop: To wash away pollens and dust from your nose and preventing them to reach your lungs directly, wash your nose every morning and night with the saline solution. It also helps in treating bad allergies, like sinus pains. Although, this remedy cannot always replace appropriate medication, it will surely hold back your need for undue excess medication.
Turmeric: The age old anti-bacterial properties of turmeric help to curb the allergens in the body. Additionally, it also strengthens the immune system. Turmeric should be an essential ingredient in the daily diet of a person. A grand mothers favourite is consumption of turmeric by mixing half tablespoon of turmeric powder in a glass of hot milk as the greatest elixir known to mankind..
Honey: Consuming a spoon of pure honey every day proves to be helpful in curbing down the allergic reactions, especially the one, caused by pollen.
HEPA Filters: Make sure that your vacuum cleaners are equipped with HEPA filters that are very efficient in trapping the microbes fast. However, HEPA filters, if installed in the entire house, are generally more effective.
Steam: Steam bathing is the best way to open the stuffy nose, caused by allergies. It also soothes the irritation in the throat. This is also effective in curing clogged ear allergies.
Eucalyptus Oil: This essential oil, extracted out of the leaves of eucalyptus, is an excellent remedy to cure blocked nasal passages, sinus, and other allergic reactions.
Spicy Food: Some people believe that eating spicy foods, like wasabi, chilli peppers, fresh garlic, Dijon mustard, and horseradish clears the troublesome effects, caused by sinus. The piquant effect also clears the blocked nasal passage.
Fish Oil Supplements: Fish oil supplements are an effective remedy for curing the asthmatic allergies. It helps in restricting the level of leukotrienes in the body, which otherwise contributes to increasing the allergy.
Note- Some people are allergic to fish oil supplements and cod liver oil. Identify the kind of allergy you have and necessarily consult a doctor before applying this remedy.
Eat warm, cooked foods.
Stick to warm, cooked vegetarian foods, made with a little bit of clarified butter (ghee). In Ayurveda, eating warm, cooked foods gives the digestive fire a chance to rest. When the digestion is low, it can’t access the nutrition stored in raw foods, and the poorly digested food creates toxins. So when you know your digestion is up to par (especially in summer), you can enjoy your fill of raw greens and salads. The majority of your meals should still be warm, cooked foods.
Exercise and practice pranayama.
Exercise at least three times a week to keep your weight in check and improve cardiovascular fitness. Even more impactful is a 30-minute daily practice of pranayama, or breath techniques. These simple practices will not only help you on a physical level, but also on a mental and spiritual level, bringing calm, attention, and space. Focus your time on yogic kriyas (anuloma-viloma, bhastrika and kapalabhati.)
Herbal Supplements and Spices.
Using warm spices in your cooking and on your table to support your digestive fire — particularly ginger, cinnamon, turmeric and black pepper. And you can also supplement your diet with Ayurvedic herbs known to support and rejuvenate the respiratory system, like tulsi, pippali and licorice.