Healthy Life in Essex - Allergies, Toxins & Disease - a wider perspective
Your body is your space suit for survival on planet earth!
ALLERGIES, TOXINS AND DISEASE
Record numbers of people today suffer from ‘allergies’. They may have hay fever, asthma, migraine, eczema, irritable bowel or frequent ‘infections’. Modern medicine regards each of these as different complaints and blames external factors as being causative. However, new research is demonstrating that this is a very limited and simplistic approach.
Many people contact me asking about allergy testing believing that identifying problematic foods or inhalants is going to rid them of their ‘allergy’. Unfortunately, if one only avoids certain substances it soon becomes apparent that failure to treat the underlying cause results in an ever increasing sensitivity to more allergens.
Our environments are more polluted than most of us are aware. We are exposed to polluted air, our seas are dying and some fish is so contaminated that we are advised to limit its consumption. Our foods are processed, preserved, denatured, forced to grow in barren soil by fertilizers, pasteurised, genetically altered, factory-farmed and minerally deficient. Our air contains tiny particles that damage the lungs. Our water is full of chemicals including toxic metals and chlorine and in some areas, fluoride.
Our kidneys have to filter these poisons out of our blood stream greatly increasing their workload. Gradually their capacity to do this is reduced. When this happens the liver may step in – thus increasing its workload – but the liver may already be dealing with toxic overload from the digestive system. So in order to reduce the pressure on the kidneys, the skin is used as an organ of elimination. Eczema is the first sign that the kidneys are struggling. Slapping suppressive steroid creams on eczema achieves two things: - the steroids are absorbed through the skin and not only suppress immune function (that is how they are designed to work), but they also block adrenal function. The adrenal glands sit on top of the kidneys and when the kidneys have to work harder the adrenals help them out. So the suppressive effect of the steroid creams on the adrenals makes it even harder for the kidneys to do their work. Therefore the lungs have to start acting like kidneys and toxins from the blood become deposited in the lungs to be eliminated in the out-breath. Unfortunately, the toxins irritate the lining of the lungs and this can result in asthma when allergens are inhaled. The same process occurs in the sinuses and upper respiratory tract with hay fever. The nostrils are already inflamed and the pollens (or whatever) will simply aggravate this. Using steroids to suppress asthma merely adds to the toxic burden trapping toxins in the body and impairing immune system function.
This sequence of events usually results in frequent ‘infections’ such as colds, coughs etc., as the body seeks other routes of elimination. After a few years, IBS may set in when the bowel becomes inflamed as it tries to bind up the toxins in the stools. After many years of this, the poor kidneys may finally develop problems themselves. All of the above are intelligent responses on the part of the body to save the kidneys. Failure to understand this process has resulted in our belief that illness is a sign the body is not working properly!
Bacteria and viruses are activated once the toxicity reaches a level beyond which the kidneys are able to cope. Micro-organisms scavenge the toxins and because they are found at the site of ‘infection’ are wrongly assumed to be the cause. Think of the analogy of flies around a dirty dustbin – they are attracted to dirt in the same way certain bacteria and viruses are. However, it is much more seductive to believe that a nasty germ has infected an innocent victim, than to take responsibility for the ‘infection’ and actively assist the cleansing process. Micro-organisms exert their beneficial effects by mobilising the immune system. This is achieved by raising the core body temperature which enables the white blood cells to travel to the site in less than half the time. The immune system itself works at double its efficiency when the temperature is elevated. The high temperature also destroys the organisms once they have ingested the toxins. I always warn my patients that they are likely to produce an ‘infection’ when first starting treatment and that this would be a sign that the body is reacting in a positive way to the programme.
Diseases such as M.S., Alzheimers and Parkinsons are more common in people with a history of allergies and this is likely to be because of the gradual accumulation of toxins over many years. Research has shown that Parkinsons Disease can develop in people with inefficient liver detoxification of pesticides, and toxic metals have been found in place of minerals in the brains of Alzheimers patients. Toxic metals are potent disrupters of the immune system stimulating the production of highly inflammatory chemicals in the body and this is really where allergy treatments should be targeted.
So think twice before you reach for the anti-biotics (or anti-histamines) next time you are ill. Anti-biotics not only block the action of the micro-organisms, but they also damage the beneficial bacteria throughout the body, and kill off 25% of the immune cells. New research is showing that they may sometimes only inactivate the bacteria which can remain dormant in the body and cause disease many decades later. You may wonder what to do in the case of a life-threatening infection when anti-biotics may be life-saving. Whilst I do not deny that there are times when this may be so, I would point out that such an infection would only occur in someone who had already suppressed many less dangerous infections or in a baby born to toxic parents. There are alternative treatments which can be more effective than anti-biotics but which also avoid the resistance problem. Herbs are now more effective against malaria than anti-biotics. In an outbreak of Legionnaires Disease a few years ago, some patients were treated with anti-biotics whilst another chose only intra-venous vitamin C, and he was the only one to survive.
The natural medicines approach is to support the
body in what it is doing rather than to work against it.
Although iatrogenic (doctor-based) treatments are now officially recognised as the 3rd leading cause of death in the USA, this figure only takes into account those who have died as a direct result of taking a prescribed drug where the link is immediately apparent. It does not take into account deaths from diseases that have developed years after suppressive treatments where the link is not so evident.
It can be difficult for people today to realise that health is something for which they need to reclaim responsibility. Health is not a right but requires work and time. This is an anathema to the expectations the drug industry has fostered through intensive advertising. We have lost our old wisdom and now regard symptoms as something unpleasant which need to be got rid of and we look to the magic bullet to do this for us. We have been made fearful of pain, illness and the so-called infectious diseases and fail to recognise that rather than being the problem, they are a sign that our body is dealing with a problem. Eating healthily requires research beyond the mythology in the main stream media (which is influenced by vested interests from the food industry). It requires time spent sprouting, fermenting, chopping and cooking to produce the traditional diets for which our bodies were designed. It means taking bed-rest when ill and not popping a pill to enable one to struggle to work. It means fasting to avoid a fever rising to a dangerous level. It means not abusing our bodies with too little sleep and not enough exercise or country air. It means not expecting our livers to cope with large quantities of alcohol.
Many patients come to me surprised that they are ill. I think that considering the environmental assault to which we are all exposed, it is a testament to our wonderful bodies that we are functioning as well as we are. Cherish your body as it is your space suit for survival on planet earth!.
M.Sc (Hons) Natural Medicines, N.D., Dip I.O.N., L.C.Hom., C.B.A.K., Dip Couns., Certified Metabolic Typing Advisor (Intermediate). Naturopath, Homoeopath & Clinical Nutritionist