How to Treat Ragweed Allergies
Seasonal ragweed allergies can really put a damper on your life. While family and friends are out enjoying the beautiful weather, you’re stuck indoors to avoid the sneezing, sniffles, and itchy eyes. Luckily, having ragweed allergies doesn’t mean that you are doomed to live your life this way forever.
Conventional medicine views allergies as a permanent condition that must be treated via medications—with their own set of unpleasant side effects. As with most other health conditions, ragweed allergies have a root cause that must be addressed to minimize or eliminate your symptoms.
Ragweed Allergies and Gut Health
As a functional medicine practice, we treat many patients by first addressing their gut health. In many cases, once we’ve healed their gut, many patients suffering from ragweed allergies found that their allergy symptoms improved as well.
Since up to 80 percent of your immune system is in your gut, it makes sense that treating a leaky gut will lead to improved allergy symptoms. This is because ragweed allergies are an immune system response that is set off when you come into contact with an allergen.
Most conventional doctors don’t connect the dots between gut health and ragweed allergies. In many cases, a leaky gut is caused by an autoimmune disease or food sensitivities that set off an immune response. That’s why the first step in alleviating allergy symptoms is to heal your gut.
A Gut-Friendly Diet
The first step in healing a leaky gut is to improve your diet by replacing harmful, inflammatory foods with whole, nutrient-dense foods. This approach uses food as a form of medicine and involves eliminating common trigger foods such as gluten, dairy, soy, corn, and alcohol.
Rather than consuming foods high in sugar or trans fats, you’ll be opting for healthy fats such as olive oil, avocados, and omega-3 fatty acids. Also, add in high-fiber foods with phytonutrients, which are anti-inflammatory plant-based chemicals.
Gut Healing Nutrients
Your diet should be your first line of defense; however, you may also want to consider adding some gut healing nutrients to your daily regiment. Add in probiotics to increase the population of good bacteria in your gut, as well as glutamine, zinc, fish oil, and curcumin to further heal your gut. Many of us are having to heal from years or decades of eating a standard American diet, taking pharmaceutical medications, and overindulging in sugary or processed foods. This process takes time, and our bodies could use an extra boost from these key nutrients.
Your mind and body are closely connected. When you are chronically stressed, your gut takes a beating and makes your ragweed allergy symptoms significantly worse. One of the most often overlooked strategies for healing your gut is learning to manage your stress. Relaxation techniques such as breathwork, meditation, and yoga are all great ways to reduce your stress levels and improve the way your body responds to stressors.
Did you know that getting quality sleep is crucial for optimal gut health? Not getting enough sleep can lead to inflammation, which leads to chronic illnesses such as diabetes and insulin resistance. Your goal should be to get at least eight hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep each night. It’s best to get into a nighttime routine that includes relaxation techniques and limited blue light exposure at least an hour before bed to improve your sleep quality.
Diving Deeper with Functional Medicine
After implementing these lifestyle interventions, you may still experience ragweed allergies. If this is the case, you may want to consider digging a bit deeper into hidden causes such as pesticides, food additives, or mold exposure that could be contributing to your symptoms.
Additionally, you may need to explore hidden inflammation, which is a common cause of many modern diseases. Chronic inflammation is linked to obesity, heart disease, cancer, dementia, allergies, autoimmune diseases, and digestive disorders.
The inflammation that is contributing to your ragweed allergies could be caused by:
- A highly processed diet
- Chronic stress
- Food sensitivities
- A sedentary lifestyle
- Hidden infections
- Toxic overload
Functional medicine doctors help patients get to the root cause of their ragweed allergies—including inflammation.
Treat Ragweed Allergies with Functional Medicine
A ragweed allergy can be a debilitating condition that affects your quality of life. By making some diet and lifestyle modifications, you can minimize or eliminate your symptoms without relying on prescription medications. Finding the root cause of your ragweed allergies is the key to finally getting relief from your symptoms and improving your overall health.
Unfortunately, most conventional doctors overlook underlying causes when treating ragweed allergies. At Five Journeys, we focus on identifying and treating the root causes to help you feel better and take back control of your health.
Five Journeys has Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT) for treating ragweed allergies. Patients simply take drops under their tongue, which are custom to your health situation and can be taken in the comfort of your own home. Schedule a consultation at Five Journeys to get started today!