More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies. Fifty million. I’m one of the lucky ones. In my small family of three, we have no food allergies, no allergic reactions to medication, and only a slight sniffle on even code-red pollen days.
So when I tested my Allergy IQ using the quiz in Dr. Clifford W. Bassett’s book The New Allergy Solution, I was not surprised when I scored low … really low. If you’re one of the 50 million who suffers from allergies, chances are your Allergy IQ is higher than mine. Or maybe not. There are a lot of surprises in this book.
The New Allergy Solution is a super-practical guide for finding relief from allergies. Go right to the section about your specific allergy, and you’ll find information to help you live better. It’s a comprehensive owner’s manual for your eyes, nose, throat, and sinuses.
Dr. Bassett talks about how we’re now living in a world where allergies are on the rise – in frequency, severity, and complexity. The reasons why go far beyond the fragile nature of our “microenvironments” (our food, homes, offices, bodies).
These factors affect all of us, no matter if we suffer from allergies or not.
Six Big Reasons That Allergy Is Rising
1. A New Weather Map/Seasonal Calendar
Aka, “pollen tsunami” due to climate change.
Particularly of food (and not including risks associated with GMOs, pesticides and other pathogens.)
3. Changing Habits/Exposures/Stresses
Nickel allergies are on the rise, which may be stem from cell phone and other electronic gadget use.
Overuse of over-the-counter meds, leading to “symptom management” instead of lasting relief.
Aka, the Hygiene Hypothesis, which suggests that the use of hand sanitizers and excessive cleaning products weakens our immune system.
6. Altered Environments
Tightly sealed energy efficient homes, for instance.
So many of the approaches for managing allergies that Dr. Bassett offers are things we can all do to feel better: diet, vitamins, probiotics, exercise, yoga, meditation, acupuncture, biofeedback therapy, sleep wellness and more.
The New Allergy Solution covers everything.* Sinus allergies to outdoor/seasonal allergies to indoor allergies to skin allergies to food allergies to drug allergies … Dr. Bassett takes you through how exactly your specific allergic reaction works in your body and what you can do to feel better.
*Dr. Bassett shares a few fun facts that have stayed with me:
A Memorable Fact You Can’t Un-Know (Sorry)
That pillow you’ve used for two or more years, that now feels heavier? According to entomologists at Ohio State University, up to 10 percent of its weight is from droppings and dead dust mites. Wash pillows regularly in hot water; replace with new ones periodically.
Poison Ivy and… Cashews?
If you’re fighting a bout of poison ivy, avoid eating cashews because it may prolong symptoms. They’re from the same large plant family.
Allergy vs. Cold/Sinus Infection
The onset of allergies is gradual. Allergies don’t cause body aches and rarely cause painful throat. Allergies almost always cause watery, itchy eyes.
Photo Credit: Kamil Macniak/Shutterstock