Allergies: An Alternative Health Approach

Posted on: 04 June 2009 by Gareth Hargreaves

Alternative health expert Andrew Loosely examines the effects of the horse chestnut tree as well as infertility in his early to mid summer diagnosis. you know that the horse chestnut tree causes hay fever symptoms?

Everyone knows that Hayfever symptoms are usually worse in early summer.  But if you asked the 6 million Hayfever sufferers in the UK what the cause is, very few would say it is the horse chestnut tree. 

The horse chestnut is such a beautiful tree, and means that finer weather is here and it seems almost wrong to think of it being a problem!

Of course in natural medicine, it is not the tree that is the problem, but an imbalance in the body which allows the horse chestnut to cause the symptoms. 

Following the wonderful weather we have had recently all the horse chestnut trees have been in flower.  The flowers are often described as “candles” because they seem to light up the tree and are either a vibrant white colour or pale red.

The pollen in the flowers is easily blown around by the wind, and once airborne is then inhaled through the nose or mouth.  This can cause symptoms similar to having a cold.  The only difference is that you do not feel as bad as you would with a cold.

Unfortunately there is little you can do to avoid the pollen.  Natural health treatment focuses on expelling the pollen from the body, and soothing the inflammation which can occur in the nose, eyes, and throat.  

The use of over-the-counter or prescribed anti-histamines, effectively damp the body’s natural reaction against the pollen and although they reduce symptoms in the short-term, can create a greater imbalance for the future. With these types of medication the body becomes weaker and the Qi depletes due to the toxicity of the drugs. When the Qi depletes the immune system depletes too allowing pollen to enter into the body and cause an allergic reaction.

Nature has an array of plants that can be used to help with Hayfever. Drugs cause further harm!

Many trees, flowers and grasses can produce Hayfever symptoms.  However, the appearance of the horse chestnut flower indicates the start of the season and the most common type of Hayfever which occurs in late spring and early summer.

Circulation and natural health in the three months of early to mid summer

May 6th was the first day of summer according to the lunar calendar for 2009.  The lunar calendar is, as its name suggests, linked to the phases of the moon, and changes each year.  The best-known example of an event tied to the lunar calendar is the festival of Easter which can vary by about a month from year to year.

We now experience three months of the year when the Qi of the earth moves towards its peak.  The world becomes green with new growth, and insects and animals enjoy the abundance of food and help to cross pollinate the plant kingdom. For humans it is also a time of food abundance.

Each season in natural medicine is linked to parts of the body.  In summer it is a great time to strengthen the circulatory system.  Veins and arteries benefit from a gentle cleanse which helps to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol.

There are many herbs and spices which can be taken to treat the veins and arteries.  Rosemary, Hawthorn, Cayenne pepper and Garlic are effective remedies and simple to use as part of your diet. 

A sprig of Rosemary can be freshly picked and added to a teapot then immersed in boiled water for a satisfying tea.  The berries, leaves and flowers of Hawthorn can also be infused, although if you have any worries about using the plant you can buy Hawthorn Tea from or telephone for some advice 01628 668339. 

We suggest that you drink these at least three to four times a week.

Garlic and Cayenne Pepper (a type of chilli) are spices with a reputation for promoting health.  Used to flavour your cooking during this season they help to improve arteries and veins.  Garlic has additionally recently been found to reduce cholesterol. 

We tend to think of eating salads and cold meats during the summer, but warm cooked meals flavoured with cayenne pepper and garlic can do wonders for your health during this season.

Why is infertility a problem today?

One in 6 women in the UK today have problems conceiving and as each year goes by infertility is becoming more common.

In western medicine there are several physical problems that may stop someone from falling pregnant. If however no physical reason is discovered through the testing procedures, the woman may be labelled with ‘unexplained infertility’.

By contrast, fertility problems are viewed very differently in Chinese medicine.   Fertility medicine has been practised in China for over 1500 years with great success. Using ancient but very precise methods of analysing the body, the practitioner finds the underlying imbalance which is causing problems with conception.

The most common problem that I see in the clinic is caused by a low level of energy or function of the reproductive organs.  This upsets the balance of the menstrual cycle, which then makes conception less likely.

Low energy is a big factor nowadays.  It is often due to poorer lifestyle habits, and is responsible for a low level of progesterone. This is a hormone that is required in large amounts to prepare the uterus for implantation of the egg. If there is low energy there is low progesterone and then the fertilised egg does not implant and pregnancy fails again.

Hormone levels need to be balanced and the body needs to have a surplus of energy before it can support another life. Traditional Chinese methods are geared up to doing precisely that and there is a success rate in my clinic of 66% for natural conception.

Acupuncture has been proven to enhance IVF chances of conception by around 35%. When it is used in its natural form with herbal medicine, acupuncture offers an over 50% success rate.

There are effective and natural fertility choices before trying the more radical medical approaches. 

If you know of a couple who are trying to conceive and having no success, please mention acupuncture to them.  At Healthwise we always offer an initial free of charge consultation, and treatment takes place either in Burnham, Buckinghamshire or in Harley Street, London.

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