People With Allergies May Have Lower Risk of Brain Tumors

Logo of the United States National Cancer Inst...

New research adds to the growing body of evidence suggesting that there’s a link between allergies and reduced risk of a serious type of cancer that starts in the brain. This study suggests the reduced risk is stronger among women than men, although men with certain allergy profiles also have a lower tumor risk.

The study also strengthens scientists’ belief that something about having allergies or a related factor lowers the risk for this cancer. Because these tumors, called glioma, have the potential to suppress the immune system to allow them to grow, researchers have never been sure whether allergies reduce cancer risk or if, before diagnosis, these tumors interfere with the hypersensitive immune response to allergens.

Seeing this association so long before tumor diagnosis suggests that antibodies or some aspect of allergy is reducing tumor risk.

“It could be that in allergic people, higher levels of circulating antibodies may stimulate the immune system, and that could lower the risk of glioma,” said Schwartzbaum, also an investigator in Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The current study also suggested that women whose blood samples tested positive for specific allergy antibodies had at least a 50 percent lower risk for the most serious and common type of these tumors, called glioblastoma. This effect for specific antibodies was not seen in men. However, men who tested positive for both specific antibodies and antibodies of unknown function had a 20 percent lower risk of this tumor than did men who tested negative.

Glioblastomas constitute up to 60 percent of adult tumors starting in the brain in the United States, affecting an estimated 3 in 100,000 people.

The researchers measured the blood samples for levels of two types of proteins called IgE, or immunoglobulin E. This is a class of antibodies produced by white blood cells that mediate immune responses to allergens. Two classes of IgE participate in the allergic response: allergen-specific IgE, which recognizes specific components of an allergen, and total IgE, which recognizes these components but also includes antibodies with unknown functions.

In each sample, the scientists determined whether the serum contained elevated levels of IgE specific to the most common allergens in Norway as well as total IgE. The specific respiratory allergens included dust mites; tree pollen and plants; cat, dog and horse dander; and mold.

For men and women combined, testing positive for elevated total IgE was linked to a 25 percent decreased risk of glioma compared with testing negative for total IgE.

This work was funded by the National Cancer Institute, the National Institutes of Health and a Research Enhancement and Assistance Program grant from Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center.

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Are You Aware of Latex Allergy ?

Extraction of latex from a tree, for use in ru...

                                              

In a latex allergy, the immune system identifies latex as a harmful substance. Latex, also known as rubber or natural latex is derived from the milky fluid of the rubber tree, found in Africa and Southeast Asia. The latex original role is in the tree to heal the cuts in the surface of the plant.

Latex, after extracted is treated with ammonia which is a basic ingredient in making gloves, condoms, rubber bands, balloons, erasers and toys.

In anEnglish: Photomodel MissLatex wearing rubber /...other method, the acid-coagulated latex is used as crumb rubber and to form dry sheets. The latex is “vulcanized” by adding sulfur at extremely high temperature for a prolonged time to get low-to-undetectable levels of allergenic proteins. These are called the non-allergenic products.

Latex allergy may cause an allergic reactions ranging from sneezing or a runny nose to anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening condition. The problem is not with the rubber itself, but a contaminating protein in the rubber. Your doctor may determine if you have a latex allergy or if  you are  at risk of developing a latex allergy.

There are three types of latex allergy reactions:

  • Irritant contact dermatitis      (non-allergen contact dermatitis) It is a non-allergic hypersensitivity and it is the most common clinical reaction to latex products.  Repeated exposure of this allergen often leads to latex allergy.
  • Allergic contact dermatitis: A delayed reaction to additives used in latex processing. The reactions are similar to contact dermatitis      (dryness, itching, burning, scaling, and lesions of the skin) but they are more severe and tend to spread to more parts of the body, and lasts      longer.
  • Latex Protein Allergy (latex hypersensitivity) is an immediate allergic reaction. This is the most serious reaction to latex. Symptoms can show up as urticaria, hay fiver,      rhinitis. This allergic reactions to latex sometimes may progress  life-threatening conditions such as low blood pressure, difficulty breathing, rapid heart rate, tremors, chest pain, anaphylactic shock.  If left untreated, these conditions could potentially result in death.

LatEnglish: A PVC-Glove Deutsch: Ein Latexhandsch...ex allergy is more prevalent and found in healthcare professionals due to the increased use of latex gloves. Wearing gloves gives the health care professional more immunity and  protects against further  transmission of infectious diseases (such as HIV, Hepatitis B). About 5% to 10% of health care workers have some form of allergy to latex. Rubber gloves are the main source of allergic reactions, although hundreds of these products contain latex:

  • medical devices (gloves, catheters, blood pressure cuffs, tourniquets, bandages)
  • dental items (dams and orthodontic rubber bands)
  • children’s items (toys, bottle nipples, pacifiers and teething toys);
  • clothing (the elastic waistbands in pants and underwear);
  • household items (rugs, bathmats and rubber gloves);
  • personal care items (diapers and condoms);
  • office and school supplies (rubber bands, erasers, paint).

Not all brands or all items contain latex. Check labels carefully or contact the manufacturer for further questions.

People with higher risk for developing latex allergy are:

  • Health care workers and others who frequently wear latex gloves
  • People who have had multiple surgeries, such as children with spina bifida
  • People who are often exposed to natural rubber latex, including rubber industry workers

Latex allergy can exposure to:

  • inhalation of powder particles. Cornstarch is sometimes used on the inside of gloves to make them easier to put on and remove. The cornstarch absorbs latex proteins, but when the gloves are snapped during application or removal, the latex-laden particles fly into the air.
  • absorption through the skin can occur when latex gloves are worn. (by trauma, irritation, or contact dermatitis),
  • absorption through mucous membranes (from condoms, or internal examinations with latex gloves, through eyes, mouth, rectum)
  • direct entry into the body (e.g. during surgical procedure when healthcare professionals wearing latex gloves.

Manufacturers produce two types of products from natural latex sources:

  • Hardened rubber. This type of latex is found in products such as athletic shoes, tires and rubber balls. Hardened rubber doesn’t cause allergies in most people.
  • Dipped latex. There are the stretchy products, such as rubber gloves, balloons and condoms. Most allergic reactions to latex occur with products made of dipped latex because they’re often used directly on the skin.

Other rubber: Rarely, some people who are sensitive to latex also may react to other rubber products, including erasers, rubber toy parts, rubber bands, rubber in medical devices and rubber in the elastic in clothing.

Not all latex products are made from natural sources. Products containing man-made (synthetic) latex, such as latex paint, are unlikely to cause a reaction because they don’t contain the natural substance. Some waterproof sealants may contain natural rubber latex. Be sure to read the label before using them.

What is a cross reaction?

People who have a latex allergy may be allergic to some foods, as well (such as avocados banana, kiwi, chestnut), This is called a cross reaction. When this happens, your body responds with the same allergic symptoms that you would have if you were exposed to latex. Cross reactions differ from one person to another.

How can latex allergy be prevented?

Where possible, latex gloves should be replaced with non-latex gloves, although latex gloves remain the best barrier against infectious organisms.

Latex gloves should be powder free and contain a low protein content.
If you have latex allergy you should avoid direct contact with all products and devices that contain latex. Also avoid food that causes an allergic reaction. Latex allergy problems during dental, medical or surgical procedures can be prevented by warning health care providers about latex allergy before any test or treatment. Latex allergic people can receive medical or dental care in a latex-safe area. Hospitals and clinics that use only low protein latex gloves and non-latex gloves have experienced dramatic declines in new cases of latex allergy.

Sources:

www.AAAAI.org

www.cdc.gov

www.wikipedia.com

Stinging Nettle – This Undervalued Herb May Relief Allergy Symptoms

Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica). Picture by Gi...

Singing nettle has been used for hundreds of years to strengthening the body and treating diseases. It has been found beneficial for the relief of allergies such as asthma, hay fever, hives and other allergic dermatitis. Stinging nettle may ease symptoms like sneezing, nasal congestion, and itching by reducing inflammation.

Stinging nettle is also widely used today to treat urinary problems (urinary tract infections), early stage of enlarged prostate (BPH), hay fever (allergic rhinitis), painful muscle and joint conditions, and insect bites.

The benefits of the herb are due to a combination of several of the different components that may have pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory analgesic, numbing, antiviral, and antibacterial effects.

Stinging nettle has many stinging hairs on its leaves and stems which injecting histamin and other irritating chemicals into the skin when it is touched.

The mixture of the chemical compounds that cause the painful sting are:

Acetylcholine (a neurotransmitter in the nervous system)

Histamine, which occurs naturally in the body, is the culprits behind allergic reactions. When you are exposed to allergens your body releases histamine, which in turn causes hives, constricts bronchial vessels, and inflames the skin. The histamine in nettle attaches to histamine receptor sites in your cells and keep your body’s histamines from attaching to those cells during an allergic reaction. Nettle’s action is very similar to that of pharmaceutical antihistamine drugs, says Stanley W. Beyrle, N.D., a naturopathic doctor at the Kansas Clinic of Traditional Medicine in Wichita.

Serotonin (5-HT) is a neurotransmitter- thought to be a contributor to feelings of well-being and happiness. Also involved in the regulation of mood, appetite, and sleep and also have some cognitive function including memory and learning and act as antidepressants.

Moroidin is responsible for the long duration of the stings.

Leukotrienes are involved in asthmatic and allergic reactions and act to sustain inflammatory reactions. Leukotrienes also have a powerful effect in bronchoconstriction and increase vascular permeability, mediating inflammation; they induce asthma and other inflammatory disorders, thereby reducing the airflow to the alveoli.

Formic acid: found in the stings and bites of many insects (mainly ants). Major use of formic acid is as a preservative and antibacterial agent in livestock feed.

Do not take stinging nettle if you are taking medicine that prevents blood clots. Nettle leaves contain vitamin K. Nettle leaves also contain high level of iron, more than spinach, and are used in blood building. Nettle is rich in other minerals, such as chlorophyll, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, and the flavonoid quercitin ( a powerful antioxidant).

Nettles strengthen the entire metabolism. Nettles cleanse and detoxify the kidneys, while stimulating the liver. It also can be beneficial in lessening symptoms of PMS and menopause. Externally nettle is added to shampoos and skin creams.

Both the nettle tincture and the dried herb are used as a tea. The tea works best when one starts to drink two-plus cups daily about two months before allergy season begins. 1 teaspoon (5gms) to 1 cup of boiling water 3x a day is recommended. The tincture dose is two droppers-full three times a day for most adults during allergy season.

It is worth a try to eat fresh nettle leaves. They are great in salad. Pick them up using gloves and rub the leaves to each other before cut them. This method eliminates the leaves stinging effect. 

 

Sources:

Stinging nettle – wickipedia

Health Journal

Vaccine Against Allergies Become A Reality

 

Molecular surface of Immunoglobulin (IgG) Mole...

Molecular surface of Immunoglobulin (IgG)

 

The prevalence of allergic diseases is global and growing. Allergic diseases are becoming epidemic. Food allergy sufferers double in the last ten years. The latest study – using current trends of data- estimates that half of all Europeans will suffer from allergy by 2015. Allergy has no cure recently. The treatment is whether suppress the symptoms or lessen the inflammation using drugs, antihistamines, and steroids. This huge anti-allergy drug market anticipates to exceed $14.7 billion by 2015 in the U.S. Allergy vaccine sales were exceed $642 million worldwide in 2010.

When your body is exposed to an allergen it triggers an antigen-specific antibody, Immunoglobulin E (IgE) formation in the blood. This molecule undergo on a cellular process known as degranulation which encourage white blood cells (WBC) to release histamine, which causes all the allergic symptoms like hay fever, watery eyes, runny nose. Just suppressing these allergic symptoms doesn’t put an end to the problem.

Scientists in Finland, used a modern molecular biotechnology, discovered unique IgE-binding structures in allergens which can be genetically modified so they do not able to bind IgE anymore but they still stimulate the formation of Immunoglobulin G (IgG).  IgG is a friendly cuisine of IgE. IgG protects you from allergic symptoms by stopping the formation of IgE allergen complexes. That could block the degranulation and histamin release from white blood cells and thus block that irritating symptoms.

In that way the body develops a natural immunity against each allergy they have been vaccinated for.

Scientists at the University of Eastern Finland led by Professor Juhu Rouvinen, in cooperation with Professors Kristiina Takkinen and Hans Söderlun from VTT, a technical research center in Finland, discovered a vaccine that saved millions. The team established a new bio-tech company called Desentum to have the vaccine on the market within five to seven years.

The vaccine has a strong demand on the market. 65 million people in the U.S. and 87 million in Europe have some kind of allergy. Millions of people waiting for hope to escape from their misery.

Source:
           www.forbes.com

Sun exposure may decrease the risk of Food Allergies, Asthma and Eczema

Sunlight Feed

Sunlight

People living in areas with lower levels of sunlight are more likely to develop food allergies, asthma and aczema than those in areas with plenty of sunshine, according to a new scientific study.

The research was led by Dr. Nick Osborne from the European Centre for Environment & Human Health. He used data from analysis of Australian children and how rates of food allergies, eczema and asthma varied throughout the country. He believes these findings provide us with an important insight into the prevalence of food allergies and eczema, which appear to be on the increase.

Australia is an excellent place for this type of study as it spans nearly 3000 miles from north to south, with a large variation in climate, day length and sun strength. On average children in the south of the country were twice as likely to develop eczema as those in the north. There was also a link between latitude and allergies to peanuts and eggs. The report suggests that exposure to the sun may play a role in rising levels of food allergy and eczema.

Researchers pointed to exposure to sunlight as the cause for the findings. Generally speaking the further south or north from the equator you live the higher the incidence of developing food allergy or eczema.  People who live in sunnier climates – closer to the equator – get more sunshine on a daily basis.

Always, care has to be taken we are not exposed to too much sunlight, increasing the risk of skin cancer- warned Dr.Osborn.

Sunlight is the body’s greatest source for vitamin D. Researchers say that deficiency of vitamin D could be involved in the increase in asthma and allergies. Vitamin D could lower the risk of asthma in children by up to 40 per cent, according to a new report.

The theory is that people due to modern lifestyle spend more time indoors with less sunlight exposure  – travelling in cars rather than walking, for example – as well as the widespread use of sunscreen. These habits have led to the decreased production of vitamin D in the skin of many people.

In fact, by some estimates, around half of the world’s population is vitamin D deficient. For the body to make vitamin D, the skin needs to be exposed to light. At most latitudes, you can get enough vitamin D simply by spending 15 or so minutes in the sunshine everyday without wearing sunscreen; at extreme latitudes, the atmosphere filters more of the UV out and you need longer exposure. Vitamin D supplements are also available.

Sources:

Journal of Allergy and clinical Immunology

Science Daily

http://www.pcmd.ac.uk/news.php?id=310

Raising awareness for food allergy is crucial

English: Food types likely to cause allergic r...

Life can be difficult with allergy.

Food allergies are a growing health concern. As many as 6 million children in the U.S. are affected and food allergies are more common and more danger than ever before.

Kids can be born with food allergies but most of the time it is acquired. Many food allergies in children are mild and fade over time. They can outgrow selected food allergies, but peanuts, tree nuts, and shellfish allergies usually last a lifetime.

There is NO CURE for allergies.

There is NO MEDICATION available to prevent reactions.

AVOIDANCE  of food is the ONLY way to prevent a reaction:

–          be aware of the foods being eaten

–          read ingredients label

–          speak up when going out to eat

–          educate yourself

Symptoms of Food Allergies can include various degrees of the following:

–          Hives

–          Flushed skin or rash

–          Tingling or itchy sensation in the mouth

–          Swelling of the face, tongue, or lip

–          Vomiting and/or Diarrhea

–          Abdominal cramps

–          Coughing or wheezing

–          Dizziness and/or light headedness

–          Swelling of the throat and vocal cords

–          Difficulty breathing

–          Loss of consciousness

Over 150 foods can cause allergic reactions, but 90% of all emergency situations involve just 8 specific food items:

    • Milk
    • Eggs
    • Tree nuts (e.g., almonds, walnuts, pecans)
    • Peanuts
    • Fish
    • Shellfish (e.g. crab, lobster, shrimp)
    • Wheat
    • Soybeans

The most severe reaction to a food allergy is the anaphylaxis.  Anaphylaxis is a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction which including:

    • A dangerous drop in blood pressure
    • A constriction of the airways in the lungs
    • Suffocation by swelling of the throat

TRIGGER food allergy short film:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnwczy3_IFg

TRIGGER is a not for profit awareness campaign. Please help protect food allergy sufferers by watching and sharing the information provided.

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Hidden Ingredients In Processed Food Can Be Fatal – Food allergy Alert!

52 Weeks - Week 5 - Food Allergy and Intoloren...

A college student, Emma Egerton, 18, ordered a Chicken Tikka Korma from Spice of India in Greater Manchester, through the Just Eat takeaway online website.

The police chief’s daughter was killed by a chicken curry from her local takeaway after she suffered a massive allergic reaction because a nuts warning was left off the menu.

Just Eat is a UK-based online takeaway website that connects customers to some 25,000 food outlets across Europe, allowing them to form a personal directory of menus and choose their favorite restaurant, place an order and select from pick-up or delivery options.

Most restaurants do not know about food allergies. Just a few of them process and cater food for food allergy sufferers, others are unaware of it. Some restaurant owners and staff not even know how dangerous a food allergy can be.

Many restaurants fry the meat, vegetables, even fish or shrimp in the same oil.

No courses have yet been organized to educate the industry on the allergy related cooking procedures. Restaurants should add nut warning signs next to the dishes on the menu that contain nuts, to help consumers.

Food allergies are not rare at all, and should not be underestimated! Food allergy is a growing public health concern. In fact, it is estimated that 150 to 200 Americans die each year because of allergic reactions to food  – according to the FDA.

  • As many as 15 million people have food allergies in the U.S.
  • An estimated 9 million, or 4% of adults have food allergies.
  • Nearly 6 million or 8% of children have food allergies with young children affected most.

The prevalence of food allergies and associated anaphylaxis appears to be on the rise.

  • According to a study released in 2008 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about an 18% increase in food allergy was seen between 1997 and 2007.
  • The prevalence of peanut allergy among children appears to have tripled between 1997 and 2008.

To reduce the risks, FDA is working to ensure that major allergenic ingredients in food are accurately labeled. Since 2006, food labels must state clearly whether the food contains a major food allergen. The following are considered to be major food allergens:

Milk, Eggs, Peanuts, Tree nuts ( such as almonds, walnuts, and pecans), Soybeans, Wheat, Fish, Shellfish (such as crab, lobster, and shrimp).

These foods account for 90 percent of all food allergies in the United States.

So, remember to take all measures to protect yourself and your family members who suffer from food allergies. In addition to avoiding food items that cause a reaction, we recommend that you:

  • Wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace stating that you have a food allergy
  • Carry an auto-injector device containing epinephrine ( adrenaline).
  • Seek medical help immediately if you experience a  food allergic reaction.

The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) was passed by Congress to ensure that there would be clearer labeling of food for the millions of people with food allergies. As of January 01, 2006, all food products regulated by the FDA must be labeled in a specific way to identify the eight major food allergens.

For a look at the complete law, visit:

fda.gov/Food/LabelingNutrition/FoodAllergensLabeling/GuidanceCompliance
RegulatoryInformation/ucm106187.htm

Walk for Food Allergy

Have you ever participated in a Walk for Food Allergy event? Have you ever asked somebody why they walk? They walk, because they know or love someone with food allergies. They walk because they want raise funds to help the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) to educate the public and find a cure for food allergies. They walk to save a life!

Food allergy afflicts as many as 15 million Americans including about 6 million children.

FAAN is a non-profit organization provides information and educational resources about food allergy to patients, their families, schools, health professionals, pharmaceutical companies, the food industry, and government officials.

Walk for Food Allergy events, which have raised more than $14 million for education, research, advocacy, and awareness programs since 2004, bring together families, educators, healthcare professionals, and corporate partners. Training materials for schools and restaurants, clinical studies such as oral immunotherapy, and community outreach grants are just a few of the programs that have been funded as a result of FAAN’s Walk for Food Allergy.  FAAN has set a goal to raise at least $2.4 million through its Walks in 2012.

Findings from research studies have been used to change federal and state laws, improve the daily lives of individuals with food allergy, raise public awareness, improve school policies, and provide education for patients, caregivers, and health professionals.

The Walk for Food Allergy will be held in the following cities:

Come join us for the 2012 FAAN Walk for Food Allergy.

Sept. 16 Pittsburgh, PA
Nashville, TN
Sept. 22 Austin, TX
Lansing, MI
Northern Virginia, VA
Sept. 23 Baltimore, MD
Boston, MA
Columbus, OH
Sept. 29 Charlotte, NC
Portland, ME
Triangle Area, NC
Sept. 30 Chicago, IL
Seattle, WA
Oct. 6 Detroit, MI
Las Vegas, NV
Salt Lake City, UT
Oct. 7 Miami, FL
Milford, CT
Oct. 13 California Bay Area, CA
Oct. 14 Lincoln, NE
Atlanta, GA
Long Island, NY
Oct. 21 Ridgewood, NJ
Los Angeles, CA
Nov. 3 San Diego, CA
Nov. 10 Tampa, FL
Virginia Beach, VA
Nov. 17 Dallas, TX
Dec. 1 Phoenix-Tempe, AZ

You can also sign up for a walk in your area, if you are interested.

Find out the nearest events to you: http://www.foodallergywalk.org/site/PageServer?pagename=walk_locations_by_state

Allergy – Overview

What Are Allergies?

An  allergy is a reaction your body has when it comes into contact with a  specific substance, called an allergen, to which you are overly sensitive. There are many different types of allergies and you can  develop them through a variety of different exposures, such as through  touch, breathing, eating or drinking the allergen. More than 80 percent  of allergies are ‘indoor’ allergies or ‘outdoor’ allergies, also called  seasonal allergies.

Why Allergies Happen

There are three factors involved in an allergic reaction. First, the allergen  to which you are sensitive must be present in sufficient quantity to  trigger a reaction. Second “mast cells” in your body release chemicals.  Finally, there is immunoglobulin, or IgE. This is a type of protein that  coats your mast cells and is made by your immune system to resist  foreign substances.

When  you have an allergic reaction, your immune system produces the IgE that  is specifically associated with that particular allergen. This causes  your mast cells to release chemicals, such as histamines and  leukotrienes, that ultimately cause some of the allergic symptoms you  may feel.

Outdoor Allergies

Common  outdoor allergens include pollen particles from trees, plants, grass,  or weeds. Outdoor allergies are also called seasonal allergies because  you typically experience these allergies in the spring, late summer and  fall, when plant growth is at its height, but they can occur year round  in certain climates.

Indoor Allergies

Indoor  allergies are triggered when allergens like dust, mold or pet dander  are inhaled or touched. Allergies to smoke, cockroaches and rats can  also develop.

Common Allergy Symptoms

  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Nasal drip
  • Swelling in the nose and around the eyes
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Congestion
  • Headaches
  • Hives
  • Sleeplessness
  • Fatigue

In  people with asthma, allergies can sometimes worsen their asthma as  well. Prolonged episodes of allergic reactions may cause chronic congestion, changes in your sense of smell and taste, and swollen  blue-colored skin underneath your eyes called “allergic shiners.”

Risk Factors

In  general, allergies will most likely develop during childhood, although  they can begin at any age. Factors that increase your risk of developing  allergies include:

  • a family history of allergies and
  • exposure to cigarette smoke during the first year of life
  • firstborn status
  • birth during the pollen season
  • male sex
  • early introduction of formula and food (before 4 to 6 months)
  • early use of antibiotics and
  • exposure to indoor allergens, such as animal dander.

Screening

To determine if you have indoor or outdoor allergies, your doctor will ask you about your medical hjistory and your family’s history: exam your skin, face, and lungs: and then perform a skin, breathing, and/or blood test.

Preventing Allergic Reactions

Since there is no cure for allergies, the easiest way to control them is to limit contact with the offending allergen:

  • If  you have outdoor allergies, try to  stay indoors – especially on  dry, windy days between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM  – during the seasons  when pollen is at its worst. Also try to avoid being outside at  sunset when mold spores drop to the ground. You can also go online or listen to the radio for a daily report on pollen and mold counts.
  • Wear clothing that is loose and light and then wash them with hot water after each use.
  • When  you are indoors, avoid rooms that may be more prone to mold, like  basements or saunas. Reduce moisture in your kitchen and bathroom  by fixing any leaks.
  • Use dehumidifiers throughout the house and a high-efficiency particulate air, or HEPA, filter in your bedroom.
  • Keep windows and doors closed during high pollen seasons and keep an air conditioner running.
  • Keep  your house clean. Change bedding and vacuum every week, and avoid  carpeting, stuffed animals or feather bedding in your bedroom.
  • Think  twice about getting a pet, or if  you have one, bathe it every  week, brush it often and keep your pet in areas that aren’t  carpeted. Having a hypoallergenic pet, which means a pet that  produces less dander, may also limit allergic reactions.
  • Avoid smoke.
  • Avoid perfumes and cosmetics that seem to make symptoms worse.

Treatments for Allergies

  • Antihistamines  may help relive sneezing, itching and runny nose, as well as  rashes or hives. They are most  effective if you use them on a  regular basis throughout allergy season.
  • Decongestants can reduce the stuffiness you feel in your nose and chest, but  probably won’t help you with itching or sneezing.
  • Eye drops may help with bloodshot, watery or burning eyes.
  • Corticosteroid  creams and ointments can relieve skin rashes or itchiness. Corticosteroid nasal sprays can help reduce nasal congestion. If  these don’t work, leukotriene inhibitors may also be an option.
  • Oral corticosteroids may help reduce swelling.
  • If  medication doesn’t solve your allergy problems, your doctor may  recommend a treatment called immunotherapy. This entails receiving  regular injections of an allergen over the course of      three to five  years to ultimately desensitize you.
SourcesAllergies. Bethesda, MD.: National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, 2009. (Accessed on July 19, 2010 at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/allergy.html.)deShazo RD and Kemp SF. Clinical Manifestations and Epidemiology of Allergic Rhinitis (rhinosinusitis).UptoDate, April 2010, last reviewed May 20, 2011.Topic of the Month: Staying Ahead of Spring Allergy Season. Milwaukee, WI.: AAAAI, 2005. (Accessed on July 19, 2010 at http://www.aaaai.org/patients/topicofthemonth/0305/.)http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/topic-centers/allergies/

This  information for educational purposes only; this information is not meant as medical advice. Always consult your doctor about your specific health condition.

Local Allergy Forecast

Get Today’s Local Allergy Forecast For Your Zip Code Here . http://claritin.com/claritin/en/manage/allergy-forecast.jspa

Allergy sufferers could be getting hit from every angle today as the pollen count for all allergens are very high for the first time this season, a local specialist says.

“Mold, weeds and ragweed are all high, and also grass is high, which may surprise many people,” Dr. Joseph Leija, a Loyola University Health System allergist, said in a statement.

Corn grass is the culprit, with high levels are caused by harvesting of the corn, which is a member of the grass family, according to Leija, who performs the Gottlieb Allergy Count, the official count for the Midwest.

Leija blames sunshine, humidity and hot temperature — combined with the recent rains — for keeping the mold count consistently high. Add in the corn grass and “headaches and sinus congestion will be common among Chicagoans today,”  he said.

“Midwesterners with sensitive respiratory systems will feel general fatigue and  experience itchy throats and  runny noses,” the statement said.

He advises allergy sufferers to stay indoors, keep windows closed, run air conditioners, and take their medications.

Definition of allergy

                                                                                                                     

Allergies are among the most common of medical disorders.  It is estimated that 60 million Americans, or more than one in every five
people, suffer from some form of allergy.

An allergy is a hypersensitivy disorder of the immune system.

How do you get allergies? Scientists think both genes and the environment have something to do with it.  Normally, your immune system fights germs. It is your body’s defense system. In most allergic reactions, however, it is responding to a false alarm.

Allergies occur when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance such as pollen, bee venom or pet dander.  A substance that causes a reaction is called an allergen. These reactions are acquired, predictable, and rapid.

Your immune system produces substances known as antibodies. Some of these antibodies protect you from unwanted invaders that could make you sick or cause an infection. When you have allergies, your immune system makes antibodies that identify your particular allergen as something harmful, even though it isn’t. When you come into contact with the allergen, your immune system’s reaction inflames your skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system.

The severity of allergies varies from person to person and can range from minor irritation to anaphylaxis — a potentially life-threatening emergency. While allergies can’t be cured, a number of treatments can help relieve your allergy symptoms.

Mild allergies like hay fever are very common in the human population, and cause symptoms, such as red eyes, itchiness, and runny nose, eczema, hives, or an asthma attack. In some people, severe allergies to environmental or dietary allergens or to medication may result in life-threatening reactions called anaphylaxis. Food allergies, and reactions to the venom of stinging insects are often associated with these severe reactions.

A variety of tests exist to diagnose allergic conditions. These include placing possible allergens on the skin and looking for a reaction such as swelling. Blood tests can also be done to look for an allergen-specific IgE.

Treatments for allergies include avoiding known allergens, use of medications such as anti-histamines that specifically prevent allergic reactions, steroids that modify the immune system in general, and medications such as decongestants that reduce the symptoms. Many of these medications are taken by mouth, though epinephrine, which is used to treat anaphylactic reactions, is injected. Immunotherapy uses injected allergens to desensitize the body’s response.

Allergic diseases are more common in industrialized countries than in agricultural countries , and there is a higher rate of allergic disease in urban populations versus rural populations.

Allergy disorders on the rise in India

Rapid urbanisation along with changing lifestyles has upped the number of allergy related disorders in developing countries. Lack of research and speciality in the discipline mans that they remain ill-prepared to deal with the problem.

In December this year, India will for the first time play host to over 90 top specialists from 30 countries at an international conference in Hyderabad that will see them deliver lectures, hold public forums and awareness camps and discussions on how to bring about more focus on the issue. Dr Ruby Pawankar, President of the World Allergy Organisation (WAO), the first woman and the first Indian to hold this position, says allergies are part of chronic non-communicable diseases and is a huge issue, even in developing countries.

In India to lay the ground for the international conference to be held from December 6 to 9, the Tokyo-based Pawankar says it is high time allergy as a disorder develops into a super speciality discipline. “As many as 250,000 people die of asthma every year. And asthma is only one form of allergy of the respiratory tract. Skin allergies are rampant, and there are 200 million cases of food allergies. Besides developing it into a separate medial discipline, a number of policy initiatives are also required,” she said.

Allergies can simply be defined as abnormal reactions to normally harmless substances. They can range from minor irritants such as sneezing and itching, to major problems such as asthma and even fatal reactions like anaphylaxis in some cases. Even as the incidence of such problems increases in countries such as India, there is little research or data evidence collection to gauge its real burden and magnitude. The World Allergy Organisation (WAO), which started six decades back, was a less pro-active organisation in the first few decades of its existence. However, over the past 15 to 20 years, it has consciously become more active in the fields of advocacy, training, research and awareness creation.

Severe Food Allergies at Back-to-School Time

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA)– Here’s something to think about as another school year gets underway: of the six million kids who have food allergies in the U.S., as many as one in four have their first reaction at school.  Now there’s an effort to make sure teachers and other school staffers know how to use life-saving EpiPens (syringes pre-filled with epinephrine).

At school, children can be exposed to dozens and dozens of different foods.  Even with vigilance about allergen-free tables in the cafeteria and keeping kids’ lunches separate, thousands of severe reactions happen each year.  Many adults are unable or unsure how to help.

Dr. D.J. Sherzer, MD, an emergency medicine specialist with Nationwide Children’s Hospital says, “Approximately half of those people actually had epinephrine in the vicinity.   It was available to them, it just wasn’t used or it wasn’t used in time.”

Dr. Sherzer says adults may feel intimidated about injecting a child, so teaching school staffers how to use EpiPens in an emergency is paramount.

Dr. Robert Wood, M.D.  is director of pediatric allergy and immunology at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.  He says he’s seen the same lack of epinephrine usage in a study of pre-schoolers.  Seventy percent of the children who had a life-threatening food allergy reaction were not given the shot by parents or caregivers.

Dr. Wood says, “Even though the medicine was available to them, it wasn’t given.   And that’s typical because people are scared to give the medicine, or in the panic of the attack, they are not sure what to do.”

Dr. Wood says some adults give an oral antihistamine like Benadryl, in hopes that it will reverse the reaction.  But in the case of anaphylaxis (airway swelling and the inability to breathe), this will not work, and death can be the result.

How to use EpiPen watch  this video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgvnt8YA7r8

True Nutrition Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk in Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate and Hydrlolyzed Whey Products

SAFETY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – August 24, 2012 – True Nutrition is announcing a recall of Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate and Hydrolyzed Whey Protein, because their labels fail to declare milk as the source of the whey. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk and milk derivatives run the risk of a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

Whey Protein Isolate, Whey Protein Concentrate and Hydrolyzed Whey Protein was distributed through the website www.truenutrition.com1.

These products can be identified by the following names and lot numbers:

Whey Protein Concentrate (1lb) – Batch/lot: 0120712, Exp. Date: 05/2015

Whey Protein Isolate Cold-Filtration (1lb) – Batch/lot: 0030812, Exp. Date: 07/2015

Whey Protein Isolate MicroFiltrated (1lb) – Batch/lot: 0040812, Exp. Date: 07/2015

Whey Protein Isolate Cross-Flow Microfiltration (1lb) – Batch/lot: 0730712, Exp. Date: 07/2015

Hydrolyzed Whey Protein High Grade (1lb) – Batch/lot: 0680512, Exp. Date: 05/2015

As most customers know whey protein is derived from milk. True Nutrition shipped the above whey protein products beginning May 2nd 2012 without stating: whey is derived from ‘milk’ on their labels through a company printing mistake. This product recall notice has been initiated because said products contain milk ingredients but do not list on the labels that the ingredients are derived from milk.

If you are allergic or have extreme sensitivity to milk, you should discontinue use. In addition, if you may have further distributed this product, please identify these individuals and notify them at once of this product recall.

If you have any questions, call Carl Manes at 760-433-5376 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting FREE 760-433-5376 end_of_the_skype_highlighting, Monday through Friday 8am to 4pm (Pacific Standard Time).

This recall is being made with the knowledge of the Food and Drug Administration.

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Photo: Product Labels

Women who snack on nuts during pregnancy are less likely to have children with asthma and allergies, according to Danish research.

After studying more than 60,000 mothers and children, the researchers found that children born to mothers who eat nuts in pregnancy were 25 percent less likely to suffer asthma when they were 18 months old and 34 percent less likely to suffer asthma at seven years, compared with mothers who didn’t eat nuts.

The children of mothers who ate tree nuts (almonds, brazils, cashews, hazelnuts) were also 20 percent less likely to have other allergies.

In the past, pregnant women were told to avoid nuts because health authorities believed they could increase an unborn child’s risk of allergy. Asthma in childhood is often caused by allergies.

But in recent years the advice has changed, with experts believing there is no clear evidence that nut consumption during pregnancy and breastfeeding has any impact on a child developing an allergy.

This results of the study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, suggest eating nuts could have a protective effect on babies.

“We found that maternal peanut and tree nut intake one or more times per week during pregnancy decreases the risk of allergic disease in childhood. These results do not support avoidance of nuts during pregnancy,” study author Ekaterina Maslova, from Statens Serum Institute in Copenhagen, wrote in the report.

Professor Katie Allen, a paediatric gastroenterologist and allergist at Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, told MSN NZ the study is good news for mothers.

“This is highly relevant data for mothers with decisions about what they do when they are pregnant,” she said.

“The guidelines in the past have been based on a lack of evidence. This is really good, robust evidence that it’s safe to eat peanuts during pregnancy – you won’t increase your child’s risk of peanut allergy.”

But Professor Allen said more studies are needed to confirm whether eating peanuts and tree nuts in pregnancy can have a protective effect.

“What we need is randomised control trials where we use something to try to prevent something happening,” she said.

This comes after recent research from the Australian National University last month found children who are solely fed breast milk in the first six months of their life are more likely to develop a nut allergy than children who were exposed to other foods and fluids.

“Our results contribute to the argument that breast feeding alone does not appear to be protective against nut allergy in children –– it may, in fact, be causative of allergy,” Marjan Kljakovic, professor of General Practice at the ANU Medical School, said in a media release.

“Over time, health authorities’ recommendations for infant feeding habits have changed, recommending complementary foods such as solids and formula be introduced later in life. Despite breast feeding being recommended as the sole source of nutrition in the first six months of life, an increasing number of studies have implicated breast feeding as a cause of the increasing trend in nut allergy.”