Реферат: Allergy Enlightenment: Is Modern Medicine Fighting the Causes of This Ailment? Are Doctors Telling Us Everything?
InThe Name of Allah
OnAllergies: Is Modern Medicine Fighting the Causes of This Ailment?
AreDoctors Telling Us Everything?
A Case Against Allegra, Claritin,Zyrtac, and other «allergy relief» medicines and their makerstogether with distributors, prescribers, and blind consumers.
By Mamurjon Rahimov, May 12/2004<span Arial",«sans-serif»">Definition
Allergies are abnormal reactions of the immune systemthat occur in response to otherwise harmless substances.
An allergy is aheightened sensitivity to a foreign substance (called an allergen) which causesthe body's defense system (the immune system) to overreact when defendingitself. Normally, the immune system would only react if a harmful substance,such as a bacteria, attacks the body. For people with allergies, their ownimmune system is working too hard, and it reacts even when relatively harmlesssubstances such as pollen are present. The severity of an allergic reaction canvary from mild discomfort to life threatening situations.
Allergies are among the most common of medicaldisorders. It is estimated that 60 million Americans, or more than one in everyfive people, suffer from some form of allergy, with similar proportionsthroughout much of the rest of the world. Allergy is the single largest reasonfor school absence and is a major source of lost productivity in the workplace.
Wow! These dreadful allergies are going toget us! What kind of wunderkinds wrotethe above paragraphs, and trying to fool everyone?
I feel I have been deceived in a big wayfor the second time, maybe more, by the medical profession. I wonder why would doctors hide all theinformation about the truth on allergies and other medical knowledge, and theonly explanation that comes to my mind is financial stakes behind this singlelargest industry in the USA — that in size leaves behind aerospace, automotive,petroleum industries, to name a few. Infact, by economic size Medical Industry is at least three times as large as theAutomotive Industry of the USA!
I was able to understand allergies throughmy conversations with friends, doctors, reading news, encyclopedias, articlesand books on immune system, and most importantly — through observations ofmyself and those around me. Why can I understand some things in such a plainway while doctors try to keep the fog around it, and my part is only obeying totheir prescriptions?
Humans are like cars...
...In many ways human beings are similar tocars...Driver is like a soul, a car is like our body, and immune systemresembles on board computer of the car...
I have some university engineeringeducation, so when my car has a problem, I first try to find a solution bymyself before taking it to a mechanic. Someone told me that in America one should not trust three categories ofpeople: mechanics, doctors, and politicians.
Once my car lost power, and I tried to findits causes. Symptoms showed that fuelwas not burning properly inside cylinders (computer diagnostics atAutoZone). I searched the causes inelectrical and air system. I did anexpensive tune-up, changed air filter and airflow sensor, but shortly«check engine» light came back on. Then I turned to fuel system, and mixed injector cleaner and fuel pipecleaner with several fill-ups. Everytime the light would turn off for few days, and come back on again.
Finally, I came to the last thing Isuspected to be the cause of the power loss — fuel filter. As soon as I replaced it (very cheap), thecar became like new! It was acceleratingfaster than ever before, and moreover «check engine» light never cameback on again! Hence, until I found thereal cause of the problem — the fuel filter that was clogged with dirt over theyears — my car was suffering and could not tell me what was hurting most...
Chicago — a pollen capital? Location, location, location… What else?
(Intensity of exposure)
Until I came to Chicago, I never had pollenallergy. Furthermore, I observed that Idid not suffer pollen allergy the first year in spring (in Chicago). What was different that first year? Is that my IMMUNE SYSTEM was working properlythen, and eventually failed in protecting my organism which caused mysufferings (runny nose, itchy red eyes, occasional nasal congestion)? That is unbelievable because I live a healthyway of life, avoiding smoking, drinking, and other hazardous habits. I spent over two years in Atlanta also andnever «suffered» allergies there. Plus, I grew up at a rural town, and all the farm work, and our wondergarden never caused any trouble during blossom time. Pollen maps of the USA show that Chicago isin the «heavy» zone, which is second to «very heavypollination» zone. Pollen maps aremade using pollen count of a cubic meter (or another unit of measurement) of localair. Within a state or a city,neighborhoods can also be classified according their pollination level,vegetation type. For instance, I live inHickory Hills, IL, and hickory pollen is a well-known «allergen»(pollen.com: pollen library).
But even in Chicago, many people are nothaving pollen allergies, while some cashing out on prescription allergy-reliefdrugs after exhausting the power of OTC drugs. Why?
Another thing to know about Chicago is thatit is a very windy place. Although it isnot the windiest city in the USA, its winds take pollens around for hundreds ofmiles, and most importantly at high speeds.
What is pollen?
n: transfer of pollen from the anther to the stigma ofa plant [syn: <a href=«dictionary.reference.com/search?q=»pollenation" title=«Look up „pollenation“»>pollenation]
WordNet, Princeton University
Every spring most trees and other plantsblossom, and most of them emit pollen. Insects and birds are good carriers of pollen, but the best andinvisible one is wind. As said before,winds carry pollen for hundreds of miles, and even after the winds subside,since pollen is so tiny and light, it stays afloat for a very long time in theair.
Rains are very good at washing away pollenfrom air and various surfaces, but short and light rains only make things worseby elevating already settled pollen from surfaces back into the air(allergyinfo.com).
Most of the pollen certainly comes inspring in majority of places, and some plants continue to blossom and emitpollen throughout the year.
Pollination season is better described byblossom season. Blossoming trees andweeds produce the pollen as a natural way of multiplying. When plants start blossoming we should knowthat pollen is in the air and should keep ourselves away from this naturalprocess' way. «Allergies» canbe thought of as a punishment that is inflicted on us for intervening with thisnatural process...:)
Is Pollen Really an Allergen?
Yes, and no. The very definition of allergen is somewhatconfusing, I believe. I read postings onInternet sites dedicated to allergies, where people ask what is so dangerous inpollen that it causes allergies. Certainsites, such as allergyinfo.com maintained by Zyrtac, even mention some superallergens (certain weeds and trees).
There is no need to create a new word anddefinition, such as allergy or allergen. We learnt that allergy is an immune reaction (action), which isallegedly «abnormal». Interestingly, I believe that allergy is 100% normal. I will write in detail below.
By definition, allergens are anything thatcan cause allergy. Virtually anythingcan cause allergy, even people. Forsomeone who does not like me, I would be an allergen. So, if one can call anything allergen, thenthere is no need to have the word itself, because words are needed for us todifferentiate between things. That inturn makes us to believe that the word allergy is also redundant.
I am suspecting that these words wereadopted by learned medical men mainly to confuse people from the main thingthat we are dealing with — IMMUNE SYSTEM.
I did some enlightening for myself in thefield of vaccines recently (nvic.org), and I do not trust medical professionalsin this field anymore. My family is nowprotected from vaccines and everything else that comes with it,inshaallah. My knowledge of immunologyled me in understanding allergy phenomenon. I came to understand that immune system works in all of us unnoticeablymost of the time. Our responsibility isto take appropriate measures to consciously assist our immune system when itundertakes some extreme and noticeable actions, which is the case of«allergic reaction».
Medical and other encyclopedias referred toallergies as «hypersensitivity» to a substance (britannica.com). In plain language, hypersensitivity would be«too sensitive», «job overdone», «false alarm»,«false start», I suppose. But,having read the descriptions on how immune system works, I doubt that such asophisticated system fails in such a big way.
Allergies are divided to many kinds such aspollen, chemicals, food, and medicine, to name a few. In this case I will be talking specificallyabout pollen allergies, but most of my observations can be related to otherallergies as well.
When a substance, called allergen, touchesthe inside walls of our nose, according medical literature, immune systemmistakes it for invaders and launches immune attack by producing histamine anda lot of nasal fluid. Histamine clogsthe small capillaries inside the nose, which leads to congestion. When we take Claritin, its antihistaminereduces histamine production by immune system — that qualifies it to be immunosuppressantdrug, i.e. a drug that lowers the body's normal immune response [syn: <a href=«dictionary.reference.com/search?q=»immunosuppressive%20drug" title=«Look up „immunosuppressive drug“»>immunosuppressive drug](WordNet ® 1.6, © 1997 Princeton University). This made me very cautious because theimmunosuppressants usually suppress immunity in all ways, not just towards oneor two substances. This means by takingconvenient allergy-relief medicines people are making their bodies susceptibleto many other dreadful infectious diseases. It is also like removing air filter in one's car and continuing drivingwhen engine has «breathing problem» due to the clogged air filter.
So what made me decide that I had«pollen allergy»?
Observation of my allergy history andpattern lead me to some very clear-cut conclusions about pollen allergy. I remember my sneezing and itchy eyes startedimmediately after we visited a local forest preserve with my family in spring2003. My wife and child were with me buttheir window was closed, and thus they avoided direct exposure tohigh-concentration pollen dust current blowing inside. At first my wife and I thought I caught coldor flu, but it cannot continue for over a month without any improvement. Within a month I used more than a dozen boxesof paper tissue. Finally I spoke withDr. Sahloul, a pulmonologist from Syria, and after I explained him the symptomshe recommended me Claritin. I took themedicine and eventually my allergies subsided, but I now realize that pollenseason was almost over until I took the medicine.
New spring came and by early May I startedhaving the same symptoms as last year. My wife got away with little sneezing and occasional coughing, and mydaughter Nargiz had very mild form of pollen allergy — because pollen dust hither where she usually sits — right behind me in a car seat. This time I knew for sure I was«suffering» pollen «allergy». So I got my good old Claritin, in order tofeel not just clear, but «Claritin-Clear»<span Times New Roman";mso-hansi-font-family: «Times New Roman»;mso-char-type:symbol;mso-symbol-font-family:Symbol">â. But after two pills I wasfeeling dry mouth and eyes, fatigue, dizziness, slow reaction, and all the restthat was forewarned by the medicine's insert. I gave up the medicine right away, and turned to Internet and books tolearn about allergies on my own.
I also noticed this year that my left eyewas hurt more by pollen dust — which I traced to my habit of keeping driver'sside window open.
I never had properly functioning car A/Cuntil now (now I have), and that was a big problem last year. The year before that I drove onlyoccasionally during spring and made very short trips, that is why allergyspared poor me. Since I gave up myintention to feel «Claritin Clear», I do not go to parks for too longand too often, keep my car windows closed all the time, and A/C on, and I amgetting well day after day! That is myallergy myth uncovered!
How Does Immune System Work to PreventPassage of High Quantity of Pollen into the Lungs?
That is The Question. The question is not how allergies work, orhow dangerous pollen is. We have toinquire into the realm of IMMUNE SYSTEM, one of the wonders of ALLAH's creation- this divine, super fast, and complex mechanism, that leaves far behind allthe military and civil protection measures devised by men.
I was in the military couple years ago, andI passed all the training and tests for a lieutenant. Back then we were taught about chemicalwarfare. Enemy is most likely to use chemicalweapons when the wind is blowing towards our lines: that keeps them safe andhelps to inflict maximum chemical damage to our troops. That is not the most interesting part Ilearnt about chemical attack. The mostinteresting thing that struck me is that after the wind blows away the chemicaldust away from our lines, we, soldiers, can get up, clean our clothes andammunition, and continue the battle. Eventually, if no more chemical attacks are expected, we can even take offour protective clothing, and walk further and follow the retreating enemy. When I was modeling how IMMUNE SYSTEM workswhen too much garbage (like dust, pollen, chemicals, and whatever) keepsentering through nasal tract (as well as mouth), I remembered that theconcentration of the chemical (pollen, dust, dander) in the air is moreimportant to keep in mind than its mere existence. That is, when we take off our protectivechemical suits, there maybe some more chemical particles left in the air and someof it still airborne after we shake off the chemical residue from ourammunition, but the concentration is not lethal anymore! That is well known in allergy circles, andsome sites even offer zip code-by- zip code pollen forecast (pollen.com).
Furthermore, the speed, intensity at whichthese particles hit our eyes, body, nostrils is also very important, since thisdetermines how deep the particles can infiltrate into our body. This is not emphasized in most of the sourcesthat I encountered.
My purpose was to find a natural cure orsomething like that, herb or an exercise. I found out that besides countless doctors, pharmacies, and clinics, alot more self-learned wunderkinds were offering their services to rid you ofthe dreadful allergies. Some went as faras making hypnosis-based CD courses, for $29.99 plus shipping and handling, tomake you immune to allergies! I myselfdrank an herbal tea that my wife believed would make me free of allergies. But eventually, what I found out literallyput things upside down, and exposed the truth about «allergy».
Pollen dust is more convenient descriptionto use, and I see no wisdom behind separating allergies into «pollenallergies» and «dust allergies». This is consistent with what I said about my findings, and that what Iam writing here is highly relevant to any other kind of«allergies». Pollen is finedust that is emitted by plants into the air, in order to multiply themselves,and some of it ends up in our nasal passages, and if we, trying to usequick-fix nasal decongestants, and allergy medications open the way — this dustgoes all the way into the lungs and cause worse things than congestion,sneezing, and runny nose — and one of them is asthma. It is already established that the people whosuffer most from allergies are also very likely to develop asthma. That is no wonder. Opening air passages with artificial drugswhen actually these passages need to be clogged, closed, and cleaned in naturalway. Let's make one more step into themodern medicine, and ask why so many companies in the USA sell contact lenses,glasses, and eye drops (Visine)? Forexample, CLARITIN and other allergy medicines cause dry eyes (I suspect theyinterfere with body liquid production in some way, because they also cause drymouth). Dry eyes become open target forpollen dust bombardment and that worsens human vision. Of course, Americans generally«work» a lot with computers, watch too much TV, and read too muchalso, but I just exposed one more CLEAR reason of bad eye health. I can'thelp making another intrusion into medical mystery: why so many people have badbreath and teeth? Human saliva hascleaning and disinfecting effect. Itmaintains teeth enamel and kills germs and bacteria… Dry mouth that caused byallergy medicines — is probably one of the main causes that make our teeth andmouth vulnerable to «foreign invaders»...And bad breath and teeth isa big business, we must not forget, both for medical profession and foodproducers that make gums and mints of all kind.
Iremember using decongestants in my childhood, and quite predictably — I hadasthma afterwards for more than ten years. Our immune system produces various fluids to keep our body clean. One of them is nasal fluid. Our nose is a special organ created topre-screen the air that we breathe in. Normally, minimum of nasal fluid is enough to clean the aircurrent.
If anything is abnormal about«allergies», that is the concentration of dust (pollen dust) in theair during pollination season (summer, spring, and fall). And quite predictably our immune system isexpected to work much harder during such seasons. Just like American tanks' air filters neededfrequent changing during sand storms in IRAQ in spring of 2003. Hence, it is also abnormal to expose our noseand eyes to a high current of this pollen dust. Pollen dust irritates our eyes and nose. In response, our immune system produces «abnormal» amounts oftears to keep eyes clean and nasal fluid to keep our lungs protected — and thisabnormal quantity is quite normal for such abnormal season(s). When this pollen dust sticks to the fluidstears flow, and sneezing happens — that is IMMUNE SYSTEM is flushing the waste!
Hmm, I live in Chicago, and the first thingthat comes to mind is Traffic Congestion.
So, what is the main reason for trafficcongestions?
Road construction, those guys who aretrying to repair the potholes on the asphalt highway!
Then, do we use decongestants for thetraffic congestions?
No. We wait for construction workers to finish their job.
Because repairing those potholes isnecessary for a healthy traffic in the future...
Now do you see the parallel?
Congestion of our nose is also a process ofrepair of damaged tissue inside the nasal tract and it is necessary for ahealthy, smooth traffic in the future!
Then why do we blow away the constructionworkers in our nose, i.e. nasal fluid sent to repair and clean the area damagedby too much traffic (caused by truckloads of pollen dust), while trying to openthe congestion? That leads me back to myrecommendation that we should not blow our nose too frequently during blossomseason.
People most susceptible to pollenallergies:
1) People with convertible cars
2) People whose car's A/C does not workproperly
3) People whose home is not properlyventilated and/or air-conditioned
4) People who like to keep car window openwhile driving (especially, driver's side)
5) People with open motorboats
6) Motor bikers (especially without ahelmet)
7) Bikers (especially during high-pollenhours of the day)
8) Children, because they breath morefrequently and stay outside longer than adults.
9) People whose job or hobby keeps themoutdoors most of the time during pollen seasons.
It is well known that human saliva hasdisinfecting effect just like human sweat that besides cooling kills germsattached to the skin. The same is trueabout human tears — they not only lubricate eyes, but also wash away and killgerms in the eyes. Likewise, I thinknasal liquid has cleaning and rehabilitating effect in the nasal tract andshould not be blown frequently. Moreover, I suggest that it be held as long as possible for fasterresults. If both nostrils are congested,we should breathe through mouth, and stay away from high pollen spaces,especially outdoors. We should filterthe air we breathe through mouth by A/C and/or piece of cloth.
Hence, I think one should consume plenty ofliquids to provide his body with raw material to produce the nasal fluid. ...And do not try to save on tissues!
Congestion is also necessary during immunereaction. Just like road constructioncrews close a highway temporarily for repairs, immune system is doing exactlythis!
Go out to play and rest in the nature afterrains, not during «dry» days of pollination season. There are maps and tables showing pollinationseasons in each state.
Do not allow draught (draft) to take placein the house — his may bring in more pollen inside.
If much pollen get inside the room, it isadvised to hang moistened sheet in few corners which will act aspollen-catchers. Do not forget to washaway the pollen afterwards from those sheets!
Keep all windows closed and A/C on whileyour car is moving.
Most of the information I have used here isin public domain, but it is fragmented, and mentioned as secondary measures toprevent allergies. For instance Zyrtac'swebsite gives a lot of natural ways of preventing allergies, behind its mainendorsement — the medicine itself.
But it is up to us, people, to decide whatis secondary and what is first thing to do. Each and every individual is obliged to learn at least basics ofmedicine to protect himself and his family against diseases and incompetentdoctors, and other authorities.