When allergies hit, it can be easy to point the finger first at pollen, dust, and other environmental factors. While these floating particles in the air can be irritating, they're not the only reason allergies are triggered. When the body is feeling run down, fatigued, and in over-drive, it can feel weaker and more defenseless against allergens. Strengthening the body can help prevent or improve allergic symptoms such as sneezing, itchy eyes, runny nose, and congestion.
Which areas of the body can you strengthen to help find relief from allergies? The adrenal glands, the immune system, the nervous system, and the circulatory system. Each of these systems is connected to each other and helps your body build a natural barrier to environmental factors. When we're feeling weak or run down, the barrier becomes weaker as well and we're more vulnerable to triggers such as pollen and dust. Let's explore how to strengthen each of the systems in the body to boost our natural defenses against allergens.
Boosting the Adrenal Glands
The adrenal glands sit on top of the kidneys and release a hormone called cortisol in response to stress. When we're chronically stressed and not taking breaks to rest up, our cortisol supply gets heavily used and can become low. This is an issue for the immune system! Cortisol actually helps prevent the body's immune response from getting out of hand and creating too much inflammation and allergy-type symptoms. If you're feeling chronically run down and tired, it's probably time to take a break, rest more, pay more attention to the body. It can also help to find an adrenal support formula to balance the body's stress response. Once stress is better managed, the immune system can calm down too and become less reactive.
Help the Immune System Out
A big part of the immune system actually lives in the gut. Immune tissue as well as healthy bacteria play a big role in preventing colds and allergies. Sometimes when we're busy, it's easy to ignore what we're eating and how we're treating our digestive systems. By adding energetic foods to the diet, we can avoid the digestion becoming too sluggish, stagnant, and allergy-prone. During allergy season, it helps to eat nutrient-, antioxidant-, and water-rich foods, such as berries or avocados. Pay attention to how food makes you feel afterward, and this clue will let you know which meals are contributing to allergies versus which ones are protecting you from them. And remember Vitamin C!
Pay Attention to an Overstimulated Nervous System
When we're feeling very reactive to pollen or dust in the air, those may not be the only environmental factors we're sensitive to. In social environments such as the workplace, school, or even around family or friends, the nervous system can get overstimulated, anxious, and generally sensitive depending on how we're feeling. After all, we deal with boundaries in many different ways in each environment we visit. Boundaries with other people, when they're confusing or feel stepped on, can make our nerves feel frazzled---causing stress. Even the boundaries we have with ourselves can benefit from extra support. Are you frequently too hard on yourself? These social boundaries can affect our immune system's boundaries. As we talked about earlier, increased stress makes the immune system more vulnerable to allergens. When you're feeling overwhelmed with allergies, ask yourself what other dynamics might also be overwhelming you in the environment.
Keep Everything Moving
The circulatory system helps clean and detoxify the internal environment in our bodies. When we skip out on getting regular movement and exercise, drinking water, and learning to relax, our circulatory systems get affected too. Circulation can start to feel stuck or stagnant. Often, symptoms such as bloating, constipation, cold hands and feet, and headaches also become more common with sluggish circulation. Healthy blood and lymph flow helps flush out the organ systems and keep our immune systems strong. Make sure to stay hydrated and active during allergy season.