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Health Questions & Answers



I have terrible seasonal allergies that hit me hard every spring. What causes allergies?

Smartliving Guest asked this
June 9, 2011 at 12:47 PM



Allergies happen when we have an over-activation of a certain type of antibody in our immune system called the “IgE” antibody.

The IgE is designed to help the body fight off parasites such as protozoa, flukes and parasitic worms and it does this by recognizing foreign proteins, then alerting the immune system. In response, the immune system then releases histamines and other chemicals meant to protect the body and fight off intruders, but causes inflammation of the mucus membranes (itching, swelling, and mucus production) in the process. The problem is that some people have super-sensitive IgE that not only go after parasites, but also go after common environmental proteins, like pollen, dust, or certain foods.

You get your allergies because when spring comes, flowers and trees release microscopic pollen. These enter your mucus membranes (eyes, nose, lungs, etc…), and because your IgE antibodies are especially sensitive to these, pollen is mistakenly viewed as a threat, histamine is released, and your eyes, nose and lungs become inflamed.

Stay healthy, Dr. Jeff M.D.

Dr. Jeff Chamberlain, MD Health Coach answered
June 9, 2011 at 12:50 PM
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