Ayurveda and Modern-Day Allergies
Ayurveda and Modern-Day Allergies
by David D. Jameson, Ayurvedic Practitioner and Doctor of Natural Medicine Candidate
Millions of North Americans suffer from what we term as allergies. An allergy can be defined as an adverse reaction to any substance that your body perceives as a threat to balance. Once this threat is detected the human organism attempts to rid itself of the perceived threat. The question becomes why do some organisms perceive a substance as a threat and other organisms live in harmony with this threat? That is the beauty of Ayurveda as it treats the individual and not the imbalance.
Modern medicine approaches allergies with an attempt to make the person symptom free and pain free. This is a temporary fix as the pills, shots, inhalers need to be taken when it’s “allergy season” or anytime symptoms appear. This approach states that the body will attempt to protects itself by producing antibodies which in turn will invoke cellular responses (e.g. histamine) and chemicals will release into the bloodstream. When this happens, the body will show symptoms like itchy eyes, skin reactions, scratchy throat, sinus congestion and in severe cases even asthmatic and anaphylactic attacks. The modern approach takes the symptom and prescribes medication to stop that symptom which we now see is a reaction and not the actual symptom of the imbalance. Think that through…the body releases histamines in response to an issue and then we take an anti histamine medication to stop the symptoms of the histamines that were released into the body to deal with the toxic build up. Eventually the toxins will get pushed to different locations and new symptoms will arise and that will increase the need for more and stronger medications.
Ayurveda teaches that the primary cause of allergies is due to accumulated toxins. Categorically the two dominant toxins are the accumulation of undigested food particles (ama) and the accumulation of waste matter (mala). Both accumulate due to the bodies inability to deal with them and not the actual substance itself. The primary reason is imbalanced digestive action (agni). These toxins accumulate and accumulate and accumulate to the level that the body begins to view them as an antigen triggering an immune response which starts the chemical releases, the symptoms and eventually an immune response. The overuse of the immune system depletes our naturally stored immunity (ojas).
How allergies manifest in the body is influenced mainly by the individual’s constitution or current state of doshic balance. First the Ayurvedic approach treats the individual and not the symptoms. Also taken into consideration; daily habits, food habits, sleep hygiene, environment. Ayurveda uses different foods and herbal formulas to rid the body of toxins and restore balance to the doshas along with other Ayurvedic methodology that has been used successfully for thousands of years.
The Doshas and Allergies
The three humors or doshas are responsible for maintaining health. If the doshas accumulate beyond normal balance (vrddhi) or move to locations in the body where they are not of benefit (dushthi) imbalances will follow. This is why different doshic types manifest different type of allergic reactions.
The Bottom Line
Winter is the time to put together a game plan and start working towards an all-natural and healing approach to dealing with your allergies. This gives someone starting the ayurvedic approach months to begin a protocol to:
– Rid the body of toxins
– Optimize the body’s ability to rid itself of waste
– Repair damaged tissues
And the big one…
– Optimize digestive function to burn toxins and move waste material to reduce the chance of any reoccurance
Please visit www.bluelotushealingcenter.com or call 810.620.1000 to schedule a professional Ayurvedic Assessment and Consultation.
Warm wishes to you all.