On Groundhog Day last month, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow and thus predicted that we would experience six more weeks of winter. This silly tradition isn’t always accurate, but has been true so far, keeping things cold and dormant. But no matter how long the winds of winter blow, sooner or later, the warming sun of spring will emerge. With March already here, it is only a matter of time before the warm days that are few and far between become the norm.
The transition to spring brings many changes in nature, the most notable of course always being the growth of new life, from the sprouting buds appearing on the trees and the blossoming of flowers to the bright green grass starting to push its way skyward from the ground. While the beauty of this season and the warmth it brings are always welcome, not every part of spring is as exciting.
The Darker Side of Spring
With all the vibrancy of new life comes the seasonal stress of allergies on your body. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America(AAFA), allergies impact around 30% of adults and 40% of children, with numbers rising year to year. Those affected spend about 18 billion dollars per year to fight these allergies, either through medicine, remedies or doctor and hospital visits. These numbers are staggering and show the true scope of the problem.
What are Allergies?
noun: allergy; plural noun: allergiesa damaging immune response by the body to a substance
Simply put, allergies are the body's natural response to fight off something it doesn't like or understand. These substances can vary drastically. Some allergies are food based, which is why certain people can’t eat peanuts while others can. Seasonal allergies, like I mentioned above, usually stem from pollen that trees, grasses and other plants produce in spring when they are returning to life after a winter of dormancy. There are countless other allergies that exist too, including sensitivity to pet dander, mold, latex or insect stings. Despite the range of allergies that exist, one thing unites them all: the ability to protect yourself against them with the Blood Type Diet.
Fighting Back Against Allergies
Allergies can put stress on your body, causing it to work overtime to handle the perceived threat. Reducing the overall stress on your body by following the Blood Type Diet is a great first step. Your body needs to work hard to deal with food lectins that are not right for your type, which is one point of pressure. Warding off seasonal illness is another. Often the body can handle the effects of dietary lectins or environmental allergens individually, but trying to deal with both simultaneously can cause symptoms. A diet of harmful lectins also can lead to leaky gut and overall inflammation, two things that stress your body further and can cause even more unwanted reactions. These reactions can include but aren’t limited to: skin conditions, digestive problems, respiratory issues, eye irritation, sinusitis or ear infections.
The Blood Type Specificity of Allergies
As with nearly every symptom your body can experience, allergies can have slightly different effects for people with different blood types due to the natural inclinations of the type in question. Here are some basic trends for each type in relation to allergies.
- Type O: dietary lectins react more with immune system (IgE) molecules, leading to more aggressive allergies and overall inflammation.
- Type A: produce more mucus on average and more of a substance known as selectin, which leads to inflammation.
- Type B: increased susceptibility to forms of lung inflammation, like asthma and viral infections.
- Type AB: lower overall immunity, but some of the best resistance to respiratory based allergies.
Because of these kinds of specific reactions to seasonal allergies there are also certain foods that can help each blood type support their immune system to fight allergies. Select your blood type specific list below:
If you are interested in learning more about the relationship between your body’s blood type specificity and allergies, I wrote a book on the subject called Allergies: Fight It with the Blood Type Diet. This book takes the wisdom of the Blood Type Diet as laid out in Eat Right 4 Your Type and tailors it to particularly deal with allergies. It has full food lists for each type, including a new “Super Beneficial” category that shows foods with specific benefits in relation to allergies. It also has a plethora of information on all the best practices to support your journey to better immune response. If you or someone you know is constantly sneezing and sniffly as soon as spring arrives, this book might hold the answers you have been searching for.