Your Health - How Being In Nature and Regular Exercise Can Help Improve Allergy Symptoms
Posted Jul 28 2009 11:20pm
Ten years ago I suffered from debilitating allergies. I took over a dozen prescriptions a day, yet still I felt horrible; nothing seemed to help me feel better. Suffering with non-stop sinus infections, asthma, and bronchitis; my head, neck, and back were constantly in pain. Breathing was a challenge. It truly kept me from enjoying life. Often, allergy sufferers - children and adults alike – find it difficult to live with their condition.
What saved my life, in my opinion, was getting outdoors and becoming more active. Chiefly, when my allergies act up I pay attention to the symptoms and focus on eating healthier. Keeping strong chemical exposures to a minimum and eating foods which are not allergen triggers is a beginning. Although I am allergic to a lot of the outdoors (as well as the indoors), staying active in nature seems to be one of the key elements which helped me find my health again.
Gardening, walking, and any exercise I can do helps stimulate sinus drainage so I do not need as many drugs to cope with the problems associated with my allergy symptoms. Jeremy Glasgow (seen teaching a class at right) from Underground Core Fitness has helped me this season as well by encouraging me to exercise in his outdoor fitness boot camp. Starting the day with a vigorous exercise routine will help reduce allergy symptoms significantly for me.
There have been many days I have wanted to sleep in and not go to the class. However, my travel schedule (airplanes sometimes intensify my sinus issues), and a wet/moldy summer season aggravated my allergies this year and I know that going to Jeremy’s classes as well as gardening out in nature help get the blood pumping so my sinus region and chest will feel better.
There are several tricks I do to help my allergies during intensified aggravation – get outdoors in nature (see photo below of my front lawn veggie garden), regular exercise, facial/sinus massage, taking vitamins, and less chemical exposure all help. It is still necessary to use medications, but I use them minimally as necessary. Right now I am only on three medications per day instead of over a dozen thanks to my regimen of positive habits. Even more important is diet. Understanding what you are truly allergic to will help you eat a diet which will help your system cope.
For example, I am allergic to molds. Although I am strongly allergic to airborne molds, these compounds also exist in food. Therefore, I avoid moldy foods such as beer, cheese, and mushrooms. Initially this was a difficult sacrifice, but now I have gotten used to it and it is not too bad. Without a doubt, it is better than living the utterly debilitating lifestyle I existed in before I started this regimen.
Surprisingly, exposure to nature, exercise, nutritious foods and plenty of rest is a healthy answer to what was once a life-sentence of torture.
If you or a family member has allergies, you can live a healthier lifestyle too. It IS possible for you to feel better again and take control of your health. First step – get out in nature and exercise. Next step – do your research and understand what is causing the trouble for you so you can eliminate this exposure.
Consult a doctor or allergist for advice and help in further reducing your allergy issues. You can change your life for the better. To learn more about allergies go to the online resource for the American Academy of Allergy and Immunology.