DR. SUSANNE BENNETT, author of The 7-Day Allergy Makeover, says that approximately 55 percent of North Americans suffer from allergies. Pollen, dander, dairy products, gluten, and mold are just a few of the most common allergens. What’s even more important is that many people think that their low energy and problems with digestion or headaches are normal when in fact, they may be signs of undiagnosed allergic reactions.

People who suffer from one allergy tend to suffer from many, because allergies are a sign of a deeper dysfunction in your system. Only by getting to the root cause of these allergies can you hope to eliminate them for good.

Here are some of the most important things Dr. Bennett says people need to know about allergies.

9 things to know about allergies

1 Allergies don’t always have visible signs
Another common misconception is that respiratory allergies affect only the respiratory system and that food allergies affect only digestion. This is not the case.

In fact, allergic sensitivities to food, such as sugar, can cause joint pain due to inflammation. Gluten sensitivity can produce lethargy and brain fog. It can also cause headaches and itchy skin. Finally, many chemicals, such as MSG or artificial sweeteners can even produce nervousness and anxiety.

2 Pollen allergies
These are seasonal and usually disappear later. If you have hay fever symptoms (runny nose, watery eyes and itchiness) that last year- round, you may have mold allergies. Mold is common in damp areas such as bathrooms and basements. While black mold is visible to the eye, many other forms of mold are not as easy to spot. Mold can also be ingested when we eat foods such as peanuts, dried fruits, green salads and moldy cheese.

3  The environment is loaded with allergens

Allergens are carried in furniture, cars, and even the air we breathe and water we drink. Toxic chemicals and fungi are two common allergens that may hide in plain site. Americans spend over $4 billion to fight allergies each year. Most of that money is spent on doctor visits and medications. But drugs and creams don’t actually treat allergies. Every doctor will admit that such medications merely mask the symptoms without addressing the root causes.

While antihistamines and other drugs may provide temporary relief, they are often accompanied by uncomfortable side effects.

If you’re using beauty products and soaps with chemicals in them you are wearing your body down by absorbing chemical allergens.

4 Dairy
Ever wonder why you feel bloated and gassy after that vegetarian meal or cup of dairy-free ice cream? One of the most common allergies is to soy. While avoiding dairy may be essential, replacing it with soy can give you indigestion and leave you tired. Try almond or coconut options instead.

Seven types of foods cause food allergies: dairy products, gluten products (wheat, barley and rye), sugar, alcohol, peanuts, eggs, and mold- containing foods (such as many dried fruits, moldy cheeses, and mushrooms). By eliminating or even reducing your intake of these foods you can help reset your body’s load of allergens and eliminate your allergy symptoms.

5 Chemicals in tap water
Tap water won’t produce acute allergic symptoms. However, it is filled with chemicals to which people have sensitivities. The buildup of such chemicals in our bodies can lead to even allergic symptoms.

6 Bad gut bacteria
There are over three trillion bacteria in your gut that help digest foods and extract nutrients. However, through improper care of our fruits and vegetables, untidy kitchens, etc., we may ingest bad bacteria that hurt our digestive systems.

Bad bacteria in the gut make it more difficult to process what are known as fermentable carbohydrates, the sugars found in foods such as beans, broccoli, cabbage, and pitted fruits such as peaches, plums and cherries. Humans have a difficult time digesting these fermentable sugars.

The end can be bloating, gas, cramping and constipation. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is often the direct result of allergic sensitivities produced by bad gut bacteria.

7 Furniture and cars Increasingly, industrial production

Increasingly, industrial production depends upon volatile organic compounds or VOCs. These compounds are found in glues, vinyl products, paints, fuels, carpet and plastics.

Furniture made of particleboard will often use formaldehyde in its glue, while the “new car smell” is actually that of volatile organic compounds in the paint, leather, carpet and glue. VOCs can produce allergic symptoms such as itchy throat, headaches and brain fog. At high concentrations they are especially harmful to human health.

8 Allergic sensitivities can make you feel hung-over

If you’ve ever woken up irritable, with poor concentration, and with low energy, you might be having a “sugar hangover.” If you eat too much fruit and sugar, the yeast and mold that are common in the gut will begin to ferment it. This fermentation produces an autointoxication that is similar to what happens when you drink too much alcohol.

9 Allergies can be healed all-naturally
By improving the quality of seven key areas in our lives, we can rid ourselves of the buildup of allergens and toxins in the body.

More Inspiration: Check out this cool article on how to spring clean your insides and that might help with allergens control too!

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