Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Allergen avoidance

If you are one of my closer friends or family you undoubtedly know that I have bad allergies. I found out through an allergy test recently that mostly inhalants do me in, dogs, ragweed, pollen, trees, grass, and dust mites to be specific. This allergies have progressed over the last few years to the point where I thought it was time to take somewhat drastic measures.
A little background first....Since I went to school for the career I'm in now, I've become fascinated with learning, mostly facets of our everyday life. So when I have a question about anything, the research starts. This is the age of information, I'm knees deep in it, and love it.
My allergen research started 3 years ago when my allergies first started. I was probably 6 months into school. Already I was experiencing more stress than I ever had before. I wasn't even 1/4 finished with school before I found out I was going to be a dad. Poor diet (lacking real nutrition), always on the go (full time work and school), smoking, lack of sleep, and lots of alcohol were really taking a toll on me. I believe these elements play a big part in my allergies. Some people like George burns can smoke until they die at the rip age of 100. I believe they are the exception, not the rule.

The doc informed me of this and firmly advised me to stop smoking.
With the hope that it would fix my allergy problem I stopped the next day and have not smoked since. Now like most smokers who have quit, I find cigarettes repulsive. I sympathize with those who try to quit still because I know how hard it can be.

It took about a year of being finished with school for the stress to recede a good bit but I still continue to work at it. Sometimes I have to focus on having fun. I think I'm getting better at it.

I do much more driving than I did before school but I have learned to make it a relaxing time. For me that means listening to Radiolab podcast. My driving schedule is much less of a factor than it used to be suffice it to say. I consume a lot less alcohol and sleep much more.

My diet, is the only element I've recently started to change. I mention this last not because it's the last element I started to work on but rather I believe it has been the most important in my life. I used to workout a lot and thought I knew a lot about nutrition. I would buy bag after bag of frozen manufactured chicken breast, canned tuna, protein powder, enriched wheat bread, low fat frozen tv dinners. Forksoverknives changed my perspective on that. My diet belongs in a whole 'nother post because I have such strong convictions for it.

These are the biggest past habits that I needed to change. I will list some things that I have learned that you can employ in your life and why you should, if you have bad allergies.

1. Shower before bed. It washes away the contaminants (like pollen) you've picked up throughout the day.
2.Get an allergen proof mattress and pillow case. It works great with other mitigation steps.
3. Eat organic fruits and vegetables. Foods really do enable your body to fix itself.
4. Drink lots of water! Water even makes Claritin and Zyrtec work better. I don't advise taking these antihistamines daily.
5. Use a vacuum w/ a hepa filter. You don't want to throw allergens like pet dander back into the air.
6. Take in as much vitamin C as you can. Vitamin  C is a natural antihistamine. You will pee out whatever your body can't use.
7. Use ADMS spray. You can find it on I have been using it for a few weeks and have noticed that it does what it says.

Check out my next post on raw diet.