CHRISTMAS SUGGESTIONS TO KEEP YOU WELL
The Christmas holidays commonly cause a flare of allergies for the following reasons:
1. Food is abundant. There is a tendency to drink more milk and eat more chocolate, sugar, corn (in the form of corn syrup or dextrose), and wheat products. If you have no symptoms, or if your symptoms are relieved with your present allergy extract, you need not be concerned. If you have an allergy extract to treat these foods, check to be sure that the extract doses are correct. After avoiding these in all forms for 4 days, add these specific foods back into your diet, one at a time, at a four day interval. You can do one food in the morning and one in the afternoon. Does your extract prevent the symptoms?
Remember, asthma, hives or colitis, in particular, can suddenly appear – or reappear if certain foods are a problem. Colitis may not appear for 8 – 48 hours after eating a problem food, but hives are usually evident 15 minutes to one hour after ingesting something that is allergenic.
2. Eggnog can be a major problem. No form of egg has more potential for causing trouble than raw egg white, so eggnog can cause many symptoms, particularly in children who have asthma or eczema. Store-prepared eggnog can contain additives. Read labels carefully. If you are unsure if egg causes a reaction, put drop on skin and see if that spot becomes red in 15 minutes. If it does not you can put a drop on tongue. Check pulse, check breathing and check muscle strength if you know how to do this. Do not do any egg exposure if you already know egg causes a visit to the emergency room.
3. Be extremely cautious about nuts. Remember that if your child is allergic to peanuts and takes a walnut from a dish of mixed nuts that contains peanuts, there could be enough peanut on the walnut it touched to cause someone to have a violent reaction. Keep your allergy meds handy over the holidays. Have both antihistamines and asthma meds on hand.
4. Churches can cause allergies due to incense, candles, decorations, and the odors of mothballs and perfume, as well as from possible years of molds and dust in the air. Malls, restaurants and lavatories also cause many problems due to Christmas trees, fragrances and other chemical odors.
5. Generally, Christmas presents do not cause much difficulty, except for scented personal items, toys made of soft, smelly plastic which exudes chemical odors, or polyester clothing, which contains the chemical formaldehyde.
6. Natural Christmas trees can cause major problems. Some children become ill just walking into a field where they grow because of the pine odor, or from molds growing on the trees and vegetation. There is no pollen at this time of year. If Christmas trees are a problem, call your allergy doctor. You might need to be checked for pine terpines and molds. Even if you avoid real pine trees at home, your child can be exposed to trees and real Christmas greenery at school, church, malls, etc. So – caution. You can’t totally avoid pine at this time of the year.
7. In addition, some Christmas trees are sprayed with toxic chemicals, herbicides and pesticides. Leukemia has been found in excess in some communities where Christmas trees are grown for a cash crop. In the Appalachian Mountains, the incidence of cancer is nine times the number expected in a population of 36,000. They are trying to decrease the amount of chemicals used on trees in that area to see if there is less cancer.
If chemically treated trees are brought into your home, your house will be contaminated with these same chemicals. An Austin air purifier (480-905-9195) might help a lot because this one can eliminate some 3000 chemical odors..
8. Artificial trees sometimes have an odor because they are synthetic and made from chemicals. They also can be dusty and moldy from storage and these can cause symptoms. If you use any color or odor sprays on a natural or artificial tree, the chemical odors can definitely cause symptoms. Check the chemical to be used in the typical manner.
9. Christmas tree ornaments are often dusty, old and moldy. Simply going into the attic or basement to obtain them certainly can cause allergies.
10. Traveling and visiting can cause a recurrence of allergies. If you visit a relative’s home, and your child immediately becomes sick because of perfume, tobacco, dust, pets, molds, etc., it would be very wise to leave immediately and go to a hotel providing it causes less difficulty . Take your air purifier with you if you are spending the night at someone’s home.
The stress and strain of Christmas, along with lack of sleep and excitement related to the holidays, can certainly make all of us more prone to infections and allergies. Some extra D3 and magnesium (500 mg) might also help. Try ACS ( An improved form of colloidal silver) for all sorts of infection. Buy Oscillococcinum at the drug store – it’s very effective and inexpensive. For food or chemical reactions, 1-2 tsp of baking soda in a half glass of water can often help in 15 minutes.
Hope the above will help you have a have a most delightful, healthy and heart -warming holiday. It is a great time of the year for sharing , showing you truly care and being with those you love the most.
Health and Wellness Associates
Doris Rapp , M.D.