By Halley Hamann
If your answer is an emphatic YES, then you are one of the 35 million Americans who dread the change of seasons each year. When allergy-sensitive individuals encounter the pollen from plants, their immune systems quickly go into attack mode, protecting the body with an inflammatory response in the nasal passages. It is this inflammation that causes the notoriously uncomfortable allergy symptoms - sneezing, runny rose, itchy eyes, and congestion.
Sonali Sadequee, certified health and lifestyle coach and founder of Sustainable Wellness, offers a remedy for seasonal allergies that won’t deplete your wallet or drag you to the pharmacy. Through her own personal struggle with seasonal allergies, Sadequee discovered that while a bottle of pills alleviated symptoms, it was the food on her plate that targeted the root of the problem.
“About ten years ago, while in college, I found myself profusely draining and blowing my nose, coughing, and with constant fluid moving through my system from the moment I woke up to the moment I went to sleep,” Sadequee explains. “This lasted for two weeks, at the end of which I asked myself ‘what is going on?’ I’ve never been this sick and it’s not going away.”
After a doctor attributed her symptoms not to sickness but to allergies, Sadequee was shocked. “I thought that was impossible,” she says. “I’ve never had allergies before, so why now?”
Her doctor explained that allergies could develop in adulthood, especially in a place like Georgia where there is a high pollen count during certain seasons, which is only exacerbated by the polluted air. Having known many people who struggled with allergies and heard their complaints, Sadequee was devastated to learn that she too could become a lifelong slave to the allergy medications she had seen advertised for years.
Sadequee’s doctor prescribed her Benadryl, a drug commonly used to combat allergy symptoms. “Without having other options available to me, I decided to take it,” she says. “Within three days, all my symptoms disappeared. When allergy season arrived the following spring, I purchased more Benadryl and self-medicated with that.”
It wasn’t until four months later, in late summer, when Sadequee stumbled upon an article in a natural health magazine that changed everything. “The article suggested the elimination of dairy products if you suffer from allergies,” she explains. “I thought I would experiment; it couldn’t hurt.”
Fast forward to the next spring. Sadequee had led a dairy-free lifestyle for the past eight months, and this time around, she experienced no symptoms - and without the help of Benadryl. “That’s when I was completely shocked again, but now in a positive way,” she says. “My eyes opened and I was intrigued and interested. I became dedicated to learning more about how to support my body, sustain my health and keep it at its best.”
Since eliminating dairy from her diet, Sadequee never experienced seasonal allergies again. “Our immune systems will support us with warding off all kinds of conditions, including seasonal allergies,” she explains. “But I’ve learned about all the things we can do to support our immune system.” And, as substantiated by Sadequee’s experience, this means cutting out dairy, or at least transitioning towards a dairy-free lifestyle. In fact, research shows that dairy leads to excess production of mucous, which is breeding ground for bacteria, viruses and fungi. If the hormone-laden quality of milk and its connection to chronic diseases does not deter you from drinking it, let it be milk’s role in seasonal allergies that will make you think twice during your next trip to the grocery store.*
There are plenty of delicious and available dairy-free options to try, and there is a non-dairy substitute for almost everything. Sadequee also recommends about one tablespoon of raw local honey, unheated, once a day, or one teaspoon of local bee pollen. These will help ward off allergies while boosting immunity. In addition, it is important to drink lots of water - about a gallon per 100 lbs of body weight - and to consume fresh green smoothies on a regular basis. With these tips in mind - the most important being the exclusion of dairy - you should be well on your way to saying goodbye to seasonal allergies once and for all.
For more information on how to transition into an “allergy-free” lifestyle, Sonali Sadequee at Sustainable Wellness offers all the tools you will need. Sadequee learned firsthand the medicinal powers of the food we eat; let the same be true for you. With Sadequee’s help, understanding the power of nutrition can help you achieve your own health goals. If you want to start feeling better, increase your energy levels and be naturally disease-free, contact Sustainable Wellness today to learn more and set up your initial consultation. (Mention this article, and receive 75% off on your initial consultation. Regular price: $130.)
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*Note to readers: many food items unexpectedly contain dairy products, including certain baked goods, breads, crackers, cereals and even deli meats. When in doubt, check the ingredients list. If you see whey, casein, lactose, butter, milk protein, etc - stay away.