When you think of seasonal allergies, things like head congestion, running nose, and itchy eyes probably come to mind. You probably don’t think about your gut. We’re not talking about food allergies, after all.
But as we learn more about gut health and how it influences other aspects of physical health, there are some interesting connections between our digestive systems and immune system that just might inform how we treat seasonal allergies in the future.
The root of seasonal allergies
So let’s get the basics out of the way first so you’ll understand where we’re coming from.
If you have seasonal allergies, it means your immune system overreacts to the pollen or mold spores released during a certain time of year and tries to fight it off the way it would dangerous bacteria or viruses. That’s why your allergy symptoms are similar to those of a cold. All that sneezing, congestion, and drainage is a result of the inflammation and release of fluids that accompanies a typical immune response.
The gut includes the digestive system, which is responsible for breaking down food and absorbing nutrients for the rest of the body to use. The digestive tract contains a whole microbiome of trillions of microbes that help digest your food. That’s a pretty important job!
But if your gut and its microbiota isn’t doing their job well, all other aspects of your health can suffer. That’s why gut health has been so in focus in recent years. If you are suffering from some ailment, we are discovering it might very well originate with your gut.
Your gut and your immune system
So what does your gut and immune system have to do with each other?
Turns out about 70% of our immune system is located around our gut, so the two are pretty interconnected. It stands to reason that if you gut is malfunctioning, there’s a good chance your immune system is affected as well.
In fact, doctors now believe that a compromised gut can lead to an overly sensitive immune system. Remember how allergies are the result of an overactive immune response? It’s very possible that bad gut health could be directly linked to your seasonal allergies. Who knew?
Poor gut health and allergies
There’s a variety of ways your gut could be suffering poor health that might also be adversely affecting your immune system. Here are a few ways scientists and doctors believe poor gut health could cause seasonal allergies:
How to improve your gut health
While there’s still much that’s unclear about the relationship between gut health and overactive immune responses, if you suffer from seasonal allergies it’s worth a shot to try improving your gut microbiome to help your immune system out. The easiest ways to do this are to eat healthy foods that promote good microbial growth, avoid sugary and fatty foods that feed bad gut microbes, and take probiotic supplements daily to instantly flood your gut with the good guys.
Yes, it seems strange that your digestive system could be the source of your seasonal allergy woes, but when you look at the big picture, everything in your body is connected so it makes sense that supporting one body system can positively affect others.
High-quality supplements can be a game-changer for your gut health. Look for natural or organic ingredients like the ones found in Airloom, which is made from flavonoids and herbs that help support your immune system all year round.