Allergies have multiple roots.
In short, one of the roots is thought to be inherited - conditions more frequent in children of parents with allergic histories. Another is of the mind and nervous system. However, it is a complex field with complex causes and even more complex symptom involvement. Since the reasons for allergic reactions are as diverse as their symptoms, the triggering factors are not always identifiable. There are many adverse reactions which are based on a completely different cause. See also our blog: Gluten can promote the development of allergies
Stress - a major cause of allergies
It is a well established medical fact that every emotion triggers the release of a number of chemicals in the body. Joyous emotions produce healing chemicals while negative emotions dump disease causing chemicals into our systems. Stress that continues without relief can lead to a condition called distress -- a negative stress reaction.
Distress can lead to physical symptoms including headaches, upset stomach, elevated blood pressure, chest pain, heart problems, diabetes, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression, anxiety and problems sleeping.
Research suggests that stress also can bring on or worsen certain symptoms or diseases. The lifetime prevalence of an emotional disorder is more than 50%, often due to chronic, untreated stress reactions. Stress also becomes harmful when people use alcohol, tobacco, or drugs to try and relieve their stress. Unfortunately, instead of relieving the stress and returning the body to a relaxed state, these substances tend to keep the body in a stressed state and cause more problems. Burn Out - also known as Adrenal fatigue is one of the consequence of prolonged stress. Read more
Emotional Stress can trigger allergic reactions.
A person who is strongly allergic to dogs may react to the sight of a plastic dog, demonstrating the involvement of mind over body in the learned aspect of these inappropriate immune responses.
The Link Between Your Gut and Your Emotions
If you get butterflies in your stomach when you have to give a speech, drive through white-knuckle traffic, or argue with your spouse, you’re not alone: Stress can exact a very real physical toll on your digestive system.
Your gut is extremely sensitive to stress and your overall emotions. And conversely, the right stress management techniques can help soothe an upset stomach.
The physical reason why emotions and stress can lead to stomachaches and other digestive problems is because the gut is highly sensitive and full of nerves, just like the brain.
"There is definitely a connection between the brain and the gut. "The gut is called the little brain - it's the largest area of nerves outside the brain."
The body’s ability to cope with everything we eat or are exposed to is dependant on many individual factors. It is often due to the accumulation or ‘rain barrel’ effect that an allergy all of a sudden develops or breaks out.
When the barrel is very full (high amounts - exposed to or in the diet), even a drop of additional water (exposure) will cause the barrel to overflow (symptoms activated). But when the barrel is less full, it would take more water (exposure) to cause a response. This phenomena, dictated by lifestyle, stress or trauma, can result in the weakening of the immune system and therefore cause an increase in allergic or allergy like reactions, explaining why at certain times we are more prone to develop various allergies and/or experience varying degrees of reactions and heightened sensitivities.
For some people, when the stress/trauma has passed, the body will regain homeostasis again and will no longer react to the offending substance.
One of the main contributing causes in the rise of allergic reactions is ‘stress’ and ‘over exposure’, also to too many artificial, synthetic or ‘hazardous’ substances and the increase of electromagnetic radiation.
Stress or trauma, and can result in the weakening of the immune system and therefore cause an increase in physical reactions, intolerances or allergies; explaining why at certain times we are more prone to develop various allergies and/or experience varying degrees of reactions and heightened sensitivities.
Mind - Body Link
The Metaphysical Causes of Disease
Metaphysical philosophy recognizes the Body-Mind connection: that almost all physical illness have mental/emotional factors that determine their onset, presentation, maintenance, susceptibility to treatment, and resolution. In other words, our mind and emotions 'unconsciously' exert control over our physical self and thus may cause a host of physical illnesses. Virtually every part of our body, every illness has a link that can be explained metaphysically.
Almost all allergies are rooted in prolonged stress, anxiety, and fear
that compromise the immune system because of a long term over secretion of cortisol from the adrenal system. (Fight-Flight responses)
Allergies are very often linked to emotional blocks in our subconsciousness were bad experiences are linked to foods, substances, people, places, situations, etc.
A typical notion we all know reacting to the things that matter : "I can't stand this...any longer" or "I can't bear ...the thought". Basically a rejection of things that someone dislikes being around: people, animals, places, objects, events, ...etc.
Allergic reactions often occur when "something is upsetting", we "feel powerless", "can't controll" and are unable to handle the "offending matter".
Perhaps we were taught as children not to "talk back, disagree, react, say or do anything deemed inapropriate" - so the only way to react is to get ‘sick’.
On the other hand people may have an allergy to eggs, for example, because of some subconscious conflict or deeply buried memory revolving around an unpleasant experience associated with eggs; or where eating eggs during a stressfull or traumatic event ". (Watching TV while eating can be very stressfull for a sensitive and empathic person, especially children.
In the book, “Heal Your Body A-Z: The Mental Cause for Physical Illness and the Way to Overcome Them,” one of the probable -metaphysical- causes of allergies: "Allergies relate to the fact that we deny our own power!" Who am I allergic to?
Consider emotional congestion, belief in self-persecution or guilt are other issues that should be addressed.
- Are you denying your own power?
- Who or what are you allergic to?
- Who or what broke your heart?
Thorwald Dethlefsen and Rudiger Dahlke MD, (1983)
Underlying principles concerning allergies from their classic book: "The Healing Power Of Illness." An allergy is an over-reaction to some substance that is regarded as "hostile."
‘Allergy sufferers need to ask themselves the following questions:
- Why am I refusing to tolerate aggression in my consciousness, but instead forcing it to work itself out in my body?
- What are the areas of my life that I am so afraid of as to be avoiding them?
- What themes are my allergens pointing to – sexuality? instinct? aggression? reproduction? Or ‘dirt’ (in the sense of the dark side of life.)
- To what extent am I using my allergy to manipulate those around me?
- What has become of my love and my capacity for letting in what is ‘out there’?
An unspoken plea for help in dealing with an on-going traumatic situation.
Milk intolerance - could be a trauma of weaning
A common allergy with children, in many cases it relates to the trauma experienced at the time of weaning from the breast.The infant may experience a fear of being deprived or deserted. Later, when cows milk is consumed, it creates a reaction in the body because it triggers the old trauma of being separated from mother.
Stomach problems: A feeling that a person can't “stomach” something---possibly a situation or an event, even a person. A repressed desire to eliminate or regurgitate something that has occurred or an emotion that is literally making someone sick and nauseous.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): Emotional upsets often trigger a flare-up of IBS.This chronic gastrointestinal illness is related to victim mentality, anxiety, and refusing to take charge.
Diarrhea: Feeling upset about an event or situation, maybe a relationship, and wanting to get rid of it, expel it.
Constipation: Pent-up and unexpressed emotions, bottling feelings up inside, fear about being open and letting feelings show.
Ulcers: Something “eating” at you, unresolved issues in your life such as a job or boss you can't stand, an unhappy or stressful romantic relationship and so on.
Gall bladder problems: A feeling of bitterness, unexpressed bile and anger or hatred toward someone or toward a life situation that feels inescapable.
Acne: Acne or skin breakouts may be an eruption of unexpressed, pent-up emotions. In some cases, it is believed that acne and skin problems might be the unexpressed longing to let the inner person break through.
Eczema: Very similar to above, or maybe a reaction to someone or some life event “getting under the skin” in some way. Also may result from feeling overexposed or lacking privacy of either physical or emotional self.
Psoriasis: Feeling unwilling to face something unpleasant, feelings of guilt or shame, feelings of inadequacy.
Asthma: It is indicative of fear, anxiety, unresolved grief, feeling stifled, and wanting to take on more than what you can handle.
Breathing problems: A tightness in your throat or lungs may be an expression of feeling smothered or stifled by a person or event. It may also be your body's reaction to feelings of helplessness, guilt or anxiety and fear.
Autoimmune diseases: Autoimmune diseases include Lupus, Meniere’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Scleroderma, Psoriasis, Alopecia Areata, Crohn’s disease, Celiac disease, Addison’s disease, Grave’s disease, etc. More often than not, these issues are the result of self-bitterness, self-conflict, and self-hatred due to some guilt.
Anorexia: Feelings of low self esteem, unwillingness to be an active participant in life, a wish to diminish sexuality, a desire to delay adulthood.
Bulemia: An obsessive need to be perfect, a conflict about weight and body image, a desire to please others, a subconscious wish to make oneself smaller and less noticeable, possibly to escape abuse of some type.
Fatigue: Feeling tired of life, overwhelmed by emotions due to catastrophic life events or chronic lifestyle that seems hopelessly stuck in a groove that is unconducive to inner peace and contentment.
Headaches: Internal conflict, discontent with your life or lifestyle, fear, feeling overwhelmed by work or other pressures.
Insomnia represents negative thoughts, worry, lack of trust, fear of death or fear of accountability.
Obesity: An attempt to comfort oneself with food because a person feels unloved or is experiencing grief, loss or a similar stress. A wish to hide, to protect oneself.
Sinusitis can be a reaction to something or someone irritating around you! It is also considered the manifestation of unexpressed emotions.
Tinnitus: Ringing in the ears that may be caused by an unwillingness to hear something, a reminder to listen and focus on conversations, a reminder to oneself to listen to inner voice.
Thyroid Disorders: Frustration due to an inability in expressing yourself emotionally. Hyperthyroidism is caused by fear of responsibility and selfishness. Hypothyroidism, on the other hand, is the result of feeling repressed or hopeless.