Sneezing, runny nose, full sinuses, itchy eyes, chest congestion, disrupted sleep, difficulty exercising.

Do you have allergies?  Seasonal or year round?  Looking for non-drug answers?

Countless numbers of my patients have enjoyed relief of their allergy symptoms by using a few simple strategies.  Read several testimonials here.

Allergies are not caused by pollen, animals, or grass.  If they were, all exposed people would express symptoms, but not all do.  It is your individual immune system’s reaction, or overreaction, to things in the environment.  If your immune system is in a hypervigilant state, when an irritant like pollen comes along, your immune system overreacts and symptoms develop.  Your immune system’s heightened state of alert is often cause by certain foods and spine/nervous system dysfunction.

Here are 3 simple strategies I frequently recommend, often with tremendous success.

1. Eliminate dairy products for one month.  Nothing from a cow for a month.  No milk, cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt, ice cream, cream, butter.  Many of my patients who try this enjoy wonderful results.  If you are going to try it, remember, you cannot have any dairy at all.  Cutting down will not give you the results you want.

If you have a peanut allergy, how many peanuts are you allotted per day?  Zero.  Think the same way here.  Confirmation of results may be assessed by reintroduction of dairy products, deliberately or accidentally, and noticing if symptoms return.

You may go cold turkey and enjoy results, or you may need some preparation time to find worthy replacements for foods you and your family typically eat.  For milk replacements, try unsweetened almond, rice, and coconut milk.  For cheese, try goat and sheep cheddar and gouda.  You can find hard goat cheese in almost all supermarkets-try the hard or soft goat cheeses at Trader Joes.  Try unflavored goat yogurt (Trader Joes, Whole Foods) in place of cow yogurt.  Rice and Coconut ice cream can replace traditional ice cream (be wary of products with long ingredient lists).  Stay away from processed soy products such as soy milk, soy ice cream, and soy cheese.

There is no down side to eliminating dairy products, contrary to what you may have been taught.  Cow’s milk is nature’s way of raising a baby calf into a large adult cow.  When a calf is weaned, it does not drink milk any longer, nor does any other animal.  Interesting.  What do adult horses, elephants, and giraffes eat to keep their huge bones strong?

2. Step up your chiropractic adjustments.  Chiropractic care does not heal allergies, rather, chiropractic adjustments stimulate nerve information to the brain and immune system, which for some, relieve allergy symptoms.  Some people enjoy relief of allergy symptoms with more frequent chiropractic adjustments during allergy season, especially kids.  No, people are not lining up outside chiropractic offices (yet) for allergy symptom relief because the word is not out.  But the people who have discovered that chiropractic care helps relieve their allergy symptoms are very happy.

3. If complete dairy elimination or chiropractic adjustments do not alleviate your symptoms, the next step is to remove gluten from your diet.  Gluten is found in grains such as wheat, barley, rye and triticale.  A gluten-free, wheat-free diet eliminates foods such as bread, pasta, most cereals, and baked products made with wheat flour.  Don’t worry; there are many easy ways to convert homemade meals and baking recipes to non-gluten ingredients, with plenty of help online and in books.  For more information consider the books “Wheat Belly” by William Davis, MD, “Grain Brain” by David Perlmutter, MD, and “The Paleo Diet” by Loren Cordain, Ph.D.  Vegetarian and vegan diets with elimination of dairy products may work, too.