From Molecules to Manure: Uncovering a Cure for Allergies
Career Path : Healthcare
The Academy of Applied Pharmaceutical Sciences blog looks at grass-roots approaches to solving the world’s growing allergy problem. Rather than depend on drugs which merely manage symptoms, imminent allergist Dr. Mark Holbreich is revealing that nature holds the secret to building stronger immune systems. It would seem that we have much to learn from Amish communities whose proximity to nature bolsters their defence against allergens.
“Dr. Holbreich believes that through continuous exposure to microbes, from birth to adulthood and even inside the womb, farmers like the Amish maintain healthy immunities to a wide range of allergens. In particular, the consumption of unpasteurized milk seems to aid in bolstering the immune system. Scientists are now studying raw milk, looking for ways to preserve or extract its tolerance–boosting components. As an alternative to drug dependency, some researchers even suggest that city-dwellers spend time on farms in order to reduce their sensitivity to new allergens.”
According to that blog post, Uncovering a Cure for Allergies, by expanding our urban centers and reducing our contact with natural environments, we are severing a relationship that is crucial to our wellbeing. It is interesting to note that environment plays a critical role in our health, and can determine the degree to which we require pharmaceutical interventions. In addition, we must recognize that our continued reliance on chemical additives and genetically modified foods could be robbing us of the most valuable remedies – those found in nature.