This year my seasonal allergies really hit me hard! I had a hard time focusing and felt like I was drowning in my own snot! This suffering made it hard to do my day job of working on the phones for eight hours each day! It really affected my numbers at work. I was desperate, and had to come up with a plan fast!
I jumped on the internet and did my research for a number of hours! What I discovered amazed me! So you might be asking why was I desperate over allergies? If you have not experienced seasonal allergies, then you won’t really know how it can effect someone who needs to make daily quotas at work! Here is the scoop on what allergy sufferers experience!
What really causes allergic reactions is your immune system? The immune system mistakes innocent things in your surroundings for a serious threat and attacks these innocent things. The symptoms you experience are the result. The symptoms of allergies and the way your body reacts to an allergen can vary. It could be mild or severe, and might affect different parts of your body.
Hay fever and other seasonal allergies usually cause mild reactions. Sneezing, watery eyes, coughing, and a runny nose are common. Allergies can also affect your digestive system. Some foods and medications can cause stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
The most serious type of allergic reaction, called anaphylaxis, can be fatal if you don’t get help quickly. It causes blood pressure to drop, airways to narrow, and shock to set in. Signs include trouble breathing, a weak but rapid pulse, and loss of consciousness. Other reactions may also be involved. For instance, if you come into contact with an allergen when you’re weak, such as after a viral infection — you might be more likely to develop an allergy to it.
So you can see why I was desperate! Needing relief from the sneezing, watery eyes, coughing, runny nose and losing my voice, was paramount, to perform my day job, As I mentioned before, I felt like I was drowning in my own snot and my head was not clear and it was very hard to concentrate, which can cause me to make several mistakes which can be risky in my day job and cause me to get corrective action or terminated from my job.
What I discovered online was an herb entitled Butterbur, and I was amazed by what it could do, especially when it comes to allergies. What is butterbur? Butterbur extract, from the root of the butterbur shrub, was originally used in Europe in the Middle Ages to treat plague and fevers. Also found to be as effective for treating hay fever as a widely used antihistamine. Although the scientific community does not completely understand the benefits of butterbur, people frequently use it to treat coughs, asthma, headaches, and stomach ulcers. The scientific name for butterbur is Petasites hybridus.
How does Butterbur work? Butterbur contains chemicals that might relieve spasms and decrease swelling (inflammation). When your body comes into contact with an allergen, it releases the inflammatory chemical leukotriene. Leukotriene is what’s responsible for triggering an allergic reaction in your body. Leukotriene (LT) inhibitors block leukotriene and prevent or relieve an allergic reaction. Butterbur seems to act as an LT receptor inhibitor, much like the drug Singulair (montelukast) used to treat nasal allergies. However, researchers haven’t yet found that it is useful in treating asthma or skin allergies.
I have been a seasonal allergy sufferer for years and I have been told to simply drink more water, or take over the counter medications, which I found these allergy drugs end up leaving me feeling loopy and sicker than experiencing allergies! Many friends of mine take allergy drugs and experience the side effects that only lets them perform in life at half power, however these friends say they cannot function without the allergy drugs.
Seasonal allergy sufferers who have tried prescriptions, and over the counter drugs have found Butterbur to be a better alternative for what ails them.Seasonal allergy sufferers have also found that when taking a cheaper brand of Butterbur they have experienced side effect of abdominal pains and headaches.
Some butterbur preparations contain chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs), which can damage the liver and cause other serious harm to the body. Seek Butterbur in a PA-Free form meaning no pyrrolizidine alkaloids. What are pyrrolizidine alkaloids? Pyrrolizidine alkaloids are produced by plants as a defense mechanism against insect herbivores. When intake of Pyrrolizidine alkaloids, one may undergo a metabolic toxication process in the liver and Pyrrolizidine alkaloids may cause damage to other organs.
However, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that PA-free butterbur products are safe, effective, and don’t cause side effects in most people.PA-free butterbur should be taken by mouth in the recommended doses for 12 to 16 weeks. However, it is not known if using PA-free butterbur for a long period of time could cause problems. Most people tolerate butterbur well, but it may cause side effects in some people.
Side effects most often affect those who are allergic to plants. Because butterbur is part of the Daisy family, you should avoid using butterbur if you are allergic to plants in the Daisy family. Side effects may include: allergic reactions, belching, headaches, itchy eyes, digestive problems, fatigue, and sleepiness.
You should always consult with your doctor before starting any alternative allergy treatment. Because butterbur could cause allergic reactions, it should only be given to children under a doctor’s supervision. It’s also important that if you use butterbur products you make sure that they are processed and labeled as PA-free.
Butterbur has several uses for relief for many ailments, not just for allergy sufferers. Butterbur is used for pain, upset stomach, stomach ulcers, migraine and other headaches, ongoing cough, chills, anxiety, plague, fever, trouble sleeping (insomnia), whooping cough, asthma, irritable bladder, urinary tract spasms, and hay fever (allergic rhinitis). Butterbur is also used to stimulate the appetite. Some people apply butterbur to the skin to improve wound healing.
So you can see that the herb Butterbur is an amazing multi purpose natural remedy! Butterbur has helped me with my seasonal allergies, and helped me come out of the fog that allergies cause, reduce the mucus and other irritating affects that seasonal allergies cause in me. I was equally impressed on how it helps migraine sufferers.
Many effective drugs come from plant extracts and anecdotal evidence that the butterbur plant was useful as a preventative treatment for migraine suggested it might be worth investigating. A team of US researchers set up a clinical trial in the early 2000s, using standardized extracts of butterbur to compare its effects at different doses. A group of people with frequent migraines were split into three subgroups and given either a placebo or a 50mg or 75 mg dose of butterbur.
The results showed that the higher dose of butterbur was significantly more effective than placebo at preventing migraines. After three months, migraine frequency in the group treated with the 75mg dose had reduced by 48% – which means that these people were having only half as many headaches as before they started the trial.
Overall Butterbur is an amazing overlooked herbal remedy for many symptoms that ail us! Consider looking into butterbur to help you with your ailments! You don’t have to take my word for it. Do what I did and get your research hat on, then found out for yourself that Butterbur is what you need to get through those tough seasons of allergies and other nagging conditions!
Thank you for reading!
Neil Saint Angeland
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