What is an Allergy?
An allergy is an adverse reaction to literally anything, that for most people would not be a problem. The substance that triggers an allergic response in an individual is known as an allergen.
The NAET approach is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) (see Appendix I) and as such it views allergies & allergens in these simple terms. With NAET we regard allergies in the broadest sense of the word, to include;-
Allergy - in the western sense, that usually triggers an immediate and distinct immune system response, known as IgE. E.g. hay fever, peanut, animal dander, dust & dust mite, soya and shell fish allergy.
Intolerance - where the body fails to produce the specific enzyme required to break down, or is just unable to tolerate a particular food. E.g. Lactase to breakdown lactose ( the sugar in milk), or gluten (a protein found in certain grains) intolerance, otherwise known as celiac disease.
Hypersensitivity or (more commonly known as) Sensitivity - these are less widely accepted in the western medicine, but there are increasing numbers of immunologists taking an interest in these. These are believed to be the cause of a low grade immune response, known as IgG and it is considered that these accumulate and can progress onto a an IgG response (see above). Sensitivities tend to have more of a delayed response of up to 48 hours.
Emotional Sensitivities - According to the TCM view, our health is entirely dependent on the free flow of energy or chi around the body. When we encounter an 'allergen' it has a negative effect on this energy system and reacts by closing down some of the energy pathways and redirecting the flow. This is an emergency response and works very well as a short term solution, but over the long term and with repeated exposure, then our health will start to suffer.
In a similar way, emotionally significant events can have a similar effect on us. Some of these, that may not have been fully assimilated by the conscious or subconscious mind may get driven deeper into the fabric of the body and can be triggered in later life to cause a somatic response (soma = body). Similar, further events and situations can just compound this, which may actually manifest as an irrational fear/phobia or even an actual physical complaint or condition.
With NAET the treatment of 'emotional allergies' or sensitivities is similar to the treatment of all the other types mentioned.
Allergies According To NAET
Are categorised as;
- Ingestants - something that we eat, drink or swallow. i.e. foods, drinks, nutrients, drugs, food additives, etc.
- Inhalants - something that is inhaled. i.e. pollens, airborne particles, dust, chemical vapours, etc.
- Contactants - something that we touch. i.e. chemicals, fabrics, cleaning agents, plastics, etc.
- Environmental - i.e. cold, heat, humidity, wind, electro magnetic radiation e.g. from mobile phones, transmitter aerials and things in our immediate environment.
- Internal factors or autoimmune - i.e. rejection of a transplanted organ or one of the many autoimmune diseases, such as the joint capsules in rheumatoid arthritis.
- Injectants - insect bites, stings, drugs & immunisations.
- Parasites - bacteria, viruses, worms, moulds, yeasts, fungi, candida, etc..
- Emotional factors - painful memories from previous emotional trauma, that has not been assimilated appropriately or resolved.
The NAET perspective is a holistic view of health, so we accept that some of these ideas could be viewed as controversial, from a western medical perspective. In short - we consider anything that has a detrimental effect on our energy system, and therefore health, to be regarded as an allergen.
We are not saying that it is the substance or situation that is the cause. These are merely triggers that set off a reaction within ourselves. So it is our own adverse reaction to that substance, situation or even parts of ourselves (in the cases of autoimmune diseases) that is the problem and not the 'allergen' itself.