The Allergy and Hormone Connection – Natural Allergy Solutions – Part 2 | Podcast #314

Hormones have profound and significant effects on your physical, mental, and emotional health. In this video, Dr. J and Evan continue their discussion on how these chemical messengers have a significant role in regulating your mood, appetite, and weight, among other things. 

Typically, your endocrine glands produce the precise amount of each hormone needed for various processes in your body. However,  hormonal imbalances have become increasingly familiar with today’s fast-paced modern lifestyle. Besides, hormones decline with age, and some people feel a sharper or dramatic decline than others. 

The bottom line is, your hormones are involved in every aspect of your health. You need them in precise amounts for your body to function fully. Hormonal imbalances may increase the risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and other health problems. Although aging and other factors are afar your control, there are many ways you can take to assist your hormones function well. Consuming healthy foods, meditating, exercising regularly, and engaging in other healthy behaviors can go a long way toward improving your hormonal health.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

In this episode, we cover:

1:21     Hormone Connections, Menopausal

8:24    Nutritional Deficiencies, Food Diets

15:58   Proper Lab Testings, Reading Hormone Profiles

22:07   Men and Female Hormones in Allergic Disease

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Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And we are live. It’s Dr. J in the house with Evan Brand really excited today we’re going to be talking about the allergy hormone connection. We did. We had a nice chat last week on natural solutions, functional medicine solutions for allergies. So I’m actually very excited to go over the hormone connections, we won’t be going into as much on the supplements or, or things that we do on that side of the fence. We’ll put a link down below so you can see that first podcast. This is going to be building off of that podcast. So if you’re coming in late to the game, you want to take a look at that first podcast, we’re going to be really dive diving in and connecting the hormone piece to it. Because there’s a lot of people that have estrogen dominance, menopause, hormonal issues, imbalances in their adrenal function, and part of that could be driving their allergy issue and you really got to look at everything holistically. And we’re going to be connecting the dots for you guys today. It’s always context, context, context. Evan, how are we doing today, man? 

Evan Brand: Doing good, always good to see on a Monday, it’s like the best part of my week is to start off with a bang. So I actually got a lot of good feedback last week on that podcast, too, you know, you and I kind of joke about how it’s a thankless job because we’ll put out an episode get 1000s and 1000s of downloads and not hear much but actually had a lot of people messaged me and said that that allergy when we did was one of the best of the year. So appreciate your feedback. And we’re excited to take it a step further.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Love it, absolutely love it. So out of the gates here, I mean, there’s kind of maybe three categories of patients that I see really benefit from a lot of this out of the gates. So first are going to be our menopausal females,  and menopausal is the one study that we’ll talk about here today that showed menopausal and perimenopausal women having two times the likelihood of having allergy issues. Part of that has to do with the drop in progesterone and the imbalance and progesterone estrogen that can skew the immune system. The other one would be a cycling female who has significant estrogen dominance, massive imbalances in progesterone and estrogen, that’s another kind of category. And then the last would be someone it could be male or female that has significant imbalances and cortisol, right? We know, when you’re having allergic reactions, you’re developing and producing all these inflammatory cytokines, right, interleukin cytokines, and these are pro inflammatory. And our adrenal glands make a natural anti inflammatory hormone called cortisol. And cortisol naturally will have combat and balance out some of the pro inflammatory cytokines. So if we have significant imbalances, and cortisol, cortisol is too high, and and we’re too catabolic, or it’s too low, and we’re not able to combat the inflammation that can really be I think, the starting mechanism of this whole allergy cascade.

Evan Brand: Yeah. And you and I were talking before we hit record about, well, why is it such a problem now, because you look at like tribal societies and such, and you don’t really see any discussion or any big issue with menopause. And we were talking about the difference in the lifestyle, of course, you don’t have the stress as much as we do in the, in the tribal societies, as you do in modern society. You’ve got more family support group, you’ve got parents and grandparents and the whole tribe helping to pinch hit in some of the family roles. And so really, the the, we’ve lost our tribe, and that baseline stress is really just so strong on people that when there’s the transition to menopause, the adrenals have already been weak for 40 years of parenting with just you and your spouse, that, you know, it’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh, I agree. I think you also have a lot more environmental toxins, you have increased nutritional deficiencies, you have a lot more pesticides in the environment, all those different things. Now imagine if you’re like, you know, living out in the forest or something in some kind of a hotter teepee, or some kind of a structure, there’s quite a lot of environmental molds, just things decaying around you. So there’s probably a lot of that by a lot of rain getting in there. So it’s amazing, probably a lot more natural mold exposure, maybe being out there but you know, a lot less stress on the other side of the fence as well. So I think we know stress plays a major role on your adrenals because cortisol is a natural stress hormone. It’s anti inflammatory. It’s a gluco corticosteroid, which means it pertains to stress and inflammation. It’s also a very powerful Energizer hormone. And cortisol can pull from progesterone. So we know progesterone does have anti inflammatory effects. So for chronically producing cortisol, that can really start to skew this estrogen progesterone balance. Because as cortisol is being stimulated due to chronic stress and inflammation, progesterone can be pulled downstream to make it because progesterone is a building block of cortisol. And if progesterone is being pulled downstream, what can happen to that natural ratio of estrogen progesterone, it can skew now. Typically speaking, progesterone is always going to be higher than estrogen in general, usually it’s about a 23 to 25 times ratio of progesterone, estrogen, but at that ratio starts to drop. So we start talking about estrogen going up, and progesterone dropping. We’re talking about that more in relative terms. not absolute, we’re talking about the ratio dropping, not the absolute numbers going in opposite directions just to make sure that’s clear for everyone.

Evan Brand: Yeah, let’s also tie in the gut piece. I mean, a lot of people responded to me and said, Wow, I didn’t have a clue that bacterial overgrowth in my gut could create the allergies. But in the same vein, the gut issues could actually create the hormone issues. So let’s talk about that for a minute. When you are looking at stool test, and we’re going to look at beta glucuronidation, being high due to a bacterial overgrowth. Now we have the recirculation of hormones happening as well. So there may be this point where we come in with some of the herbal anti histamines that we talked about. But now we also may need to come in with some of the glucuronidation pathway support like your calcium D glue, great, maybe the sulfur based amino acids glutathionre broccoli seed extract, like broccoli sprouts, we like to use those. So that’s another mechanism. I think that once again, the allergist, they’re going to miss they’re not going to give you a calcium D glucrate, but they might need 200%.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yep. 100%. I’m going to read a study here. I’ll get the exact article here for you down the road. But here is the quote, study in Northern Europe included over 2300 women and track their respiratory health from 2000 to 2012. They found the odds of getting asthma quote, we’re more than twice as high for women going through menopause or transition, or after menopause compared to non menopausal women. So there’s something that’s happening at around Peri and or menopausal timeframe. So let’s say early to mid 40s, to early to mid 50s. Right. There’s that timeframe that’s happening, I think the big thing that’s probably happening is you’re having a drop in progesterone. And then we’re starting to happen as you’re having FSH and LH starting to increase. And I think you’re also starting to rely more on the adrenal glands to fill in the gap. And if cortisol is out of balance or imbalance, there is not enough DAGA you’re gonna find a real deficit and some of these hormones and you’re not going to have the same inflammatory backup generator support, if you will, from the adrenal gland. And that’s a big mechanism that’s active here. And that’s why you’re going to see more Peri and menopausal women affected and again, a lot of women are chronically stressed and they kind of fall into that perimenopausal category younger and younger. I’m seeing a lot more perimenopausal symptoms and women in their 30s and early 40s. Now, which is really interesting. I mean, perimenopause is that timeframe before menopause. Usually menopause is when you have one year 12 months without a period. But you can start to see perimenopausal symptoms start to happen younger and younger and younger, I think because of chronic stress. And that could be hot flash issues. Of course, that could be just a lot of the PMS issues. Usually you start to see cycle, missing cycles, hot flash issues, you can also see a lot of mood changes, vaginal changes, sleep issues, weight issues, you can see mood, irregularity, loss of libido. And now again, a lot of those also connect with PMS too. So it’s kind of hard to connect the two but usually you start to see missing cycles and starting to see some of those hot temperature issues starting to occur. And then of course, a lot of vaginal dryness or a lot of mucous membrane dryness issues as well.

Evan Brand: Yeah, that was my next question for you is why are you seeing this in younger women? I mean, because this is kind of a new phenomenon, right? I mean, in the last 10 years, you’re seeing this thing is ramping up significantly. So you think it’s just the stress in the 30s to early 40. Women that maybe previously wasn’t as intense. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, chronic stress, chronic inflammation. I think a lot of women I mean, this is this is in general, this is people in general, just a lot of nutritional deficiencies due to chronic poor diets. A lot of women if they, you know, 20 plus years ago, they were in that low fat era, and they weren’t getting good healthy fat and good healthy cholesterol, I mean, that’s going to put a lot of stress on your hormones, because you need these building blocks. To make these hormones right hormones made from cholesterol, your body makes a lot of cholesterol, but could never make enough. And you need a lot of important fat soluble vitamins in cholesterol from good healthy animal products that to ideally make it optimally right. It’s hard to do that on a vegan vegetarian diet, because you’re just missing a lot of those fat soluble vitamins, and long chain omega three fatty acids that you get from high quality fish and such. So that’s I think a big thing as well. And also fats play a really important anti inflammatory role, right? We know good healthy fats, like fish and coconut, or have good anti inflammatory benefits. And we know a lot of the Omega six in plant based diets can be more inflammatory. And a lot of the good healthy omega threes on the plant based side that come from flax or chia, right, these are going to be like alpha linoleic acid, these are going to be omega threes, they have to get converted downstream and they go through different enzymes like Delta five desaturase, that makes that conversion. And if you have insulin resistance, or inflamed, it’s going to be harder to maximally convert that some people say maybe only 20% converted. So there’s a lot of conversion issues downstream. We see the same problem with vitamin A. So if you’re a plant based and you’re relying on a lot of beta carotene, for instance, and carrots plant based products, you may not get a good conversion cuz that’s the UK converted. So if you’re getting vitamin A from grass fed liver or beef, or let’s say called liver oil, right or egg yolks as a maximum conversion there because you’re getting active vitamin A in there versus having to rely on a conversion, and the more inflamed you are and the more stressed you are, it’s hard to convert an activate a lot of these nutrients.

Evan Brand: Yeah, well, you know, you gotta you made a good point, too, you got a lot more women doing things they shouldn’t be doing like going on strict vegan diets, doing plant based burgers, getting off of real Whole Foods. So I think I’m trying to just answer my own question in my head here. Like, why is this being ramped up in younger women. And I think there’s a combination of factors like always, but man, it, you got Bill Gates and other people pushing so hard, just get off meat, meats, bad meats, bad, there’s still so much on brainwashing that we have to do in the population. So I really hope folks listening into the podcast, we really hope that you all are eating good quality fats, especially women, we really don’t want you to be afraid of those.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, and kind of my pitch on meat versus plant based products. It’s pretty simple. So number one, plants bio accumulate nutrition. So the benefit that you get from animals is they buy or accumulate plants. So for instance, about one meats, one pound of grass fed meat, it takes about eight pounds of plant matter to make that grass fed meat. And so animals face make sure I say correctly, animals bio accumulate plant based matters. So you get a lot more bio accumulated nutrition. So for instance, 16 cups of kale gets you the amount of protein that’s in six ounces of grass fed beef, right, there’s a bio accumulation of amino acids and fat soluble vitamins, and even things like zinc. And then when you go and look at the bioavailability, of course, plants have a lot more anti nutrients than animal products do. So you have a lot more anti nutrients binding up oxalates phytates mineral blockers, protein blockers that make it harder to break down a lot of the nutrients in plants. And then the my sentience kind of emotional argument is, it’s all about taking, it’s all about having the most the largest amount of nutrition per death, okay, it’s really important, you have nutrients per death, if I have one cow kill for my family, that’s gonna feed my family the whole year, right? If you look at a lot of the factory farming involved in, like, let’s say raising high quality plants, and again, this may not be the broccoli or kale in your backyard, right? But if you look at on a wide scale kind of monoculture kind of scale, there’s all kinds of rabbits and snakes, and badgers and all kinds of things that get caught up in the combines when they harvest a lot of these plants. Okay, so there’s a lot of deaths happening. And so then you got to say, well, is that badgers death equal to this cow’s death, right, then you got to look at and kind of weigh well, whose life’s worth more. And then the third argument a little bit deeper is, well, are you taking the life when you’re killing a plant, and I think my personal belief is, it takes life to sustain life. So everything that you kill, whether it’s plant or animal has to have some level of life force to it. And then you’re just playing this game of well, whose life matters more obviously, I can emotionally connect with the cow because it’s got a mommy and a daddy. And it’s cute and cuddly. Maybe not with the kale, right? But all life, it takes life just to stay in life. So there has to be some level of life in that plant, for it to sustain you. Same thing with the animals. And so keep that there. And of course, when we talk about animals, we’re talking about non factory farming, we’re talking about organic, we’re talking about super high quality raising no hormones, no antibiotics, you know, one bad day for that animal. And that’s it. Right. So I just wanted to differentiate that for people that are kind of listening in on the fence with that.

Evan Brand: Yeah, well said, well said I liked the way you you put it. Alright, so this study and paper that you had, it also mentioned vitamin D. Now, just in case, we didn’t mention it last time, I just want to make sure we mentioned it now that there is definitely a link between more severe asthma symptoms and low vitamin D. So that’s a very, very easy low hanging fruit that should be addressed. If you’re working on some sort of a histamine allergy protocol. You’ve already hit upon increasing omega threes, your nuts, your seeds, your Coldwater fish, you’re doing your low histamine diet, if necessary, you’re treating the gut infections, but then boom, if you miss vitamin D, that’s easy.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 110%. And again, the other component, I would say is glutathione. We need that through digesting good proteins, right? So if we’re chronically stressed, let’s connect the dots here. So if you’re chronically stressed, you’re pouring out cortisol, your adrenals are in this fight or flight kind of sympathetic dominant state. You’re over secreted cortisol, and again, that can also look in a chronic state like low cortisol, right? Your cortisol doesn’t get low unless at some point it was chronically overstimulated. So some people think or feel like oh, my God, like my cortisol must be so my adrenal must be so overstimulated right now because I feel so off but it’s possible that they could be in this state of total dysregulation, and they’re on The lower side. So either way, chronic cortisol stress is going to affect your nervous system because the sympathetic nervous system is what’s engaged when you have a lot of adrenal stress. And the sympathetic nervous system affects digestion, right? It’s the parasympathetic that has the rest, the digest the energize, repair. So if we don’t have enough parasympathetics going, it’s gonna be harder to digest and break down our foods, absorb our nutrients. And this can really one start to create indigestion that can create more cebo and dysbiosis and bad bacterial imbalances. And those bad bacterial imbalances can negatively impact our immune system. And an immune system that’s not correctly primed. It’s overly sensitive and going after allergens that are not like a threat to us, that’s going to create allergy issues. So you see how this hormone adrenal Nervous System digestion, gut, immune connection kind of evolves, right? You can really connect it to a lot of different things because they really dovetail so importantly.

Evan Brand: Yeah. Now, the good news is, once you get the proper labs, it’s less overwhelming, because when you’re saying that back to me, I’m like, Oh, crap, how would somebody even know where to start with it? But once you get the data, it’s really easy for us to go and look at the piece of paper and go, Okay, look, here’s the gut analysis. Here’s the hormone analysis. And then on the gut analysis, we get a clue into the, into the hormones to right, because we’ll see that beta glucuronidation marker, if that’s high, we know Oh, crap. There’s recirculation going on. So this hormone profile now we have answers even deeper, we have a root cause of the root cause. Why is the hormone profile working like this? Well, because of the gut profile, and then you piece in the oats, your piece in the chemical profiles, the mold profiles, you look at where does somebody live environmentally, how much outdoor exposure Do they have, then we look at the diet piece, it makes it much much more digestible. So I just want people listening, you may be able to pull out little pieces of the puzzle like oh, I’m going to boost vitamin D, I’m going to do quercetin to stabilize it. But really, you got to get the data. So that’s what we always want to lean upon. for a couple reasons. One, it helps us to shorten the treatment duration, because then you’re not guessing and checking by just giving herbal anti histamines and sending people on their way. But number two, it’s a good compliance piece, because we can show people look, we have the reason of why you’re feeling like crap. Stick through this protocol, it works so much better. You know, there were times where clinically, I would talk to someone, and we would say, Well, you know, it sounds like this, it sounds like that maybe budget was a concern. It’s in a couple of cases. But we would just give somebody a guess and check protocol. But then we always had to go back to testing later. So really upfront, if you have this going on, get some data, so you know what you’re up against, you’re going to, you know, definitely shorten your timeline, and you’re going to shorten and decrease your cost. Like, if you were like me, I’d go buy this supplement, I’d buy that I’d buy that you have the supplement graveyard, you’re spending much, much more money doing that, as opposed to getting a dialed in protocol made for you.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 110%. Yeah, if you can see what’s going on is going to help you be a lot more compliant, for sure. And then one other connection here is we know that women who are overweight, they have twice the likelihood of having allergies as well. And again, I think this goes with men as well, when you’re overweight, fat is a major reservoir of interleukins, and cytokines and inflammation. So you can make a lot of inflammation via your fat cells. So the more inflamed you are, right? The whole thing with allergies and asthma and all these different things is the immune reaction that you’re having is an increase in cytokines and interleukins that are pro inflammatory, right. And so when you’re, you have exposure to endogenous allergens in the environment. That’s kind of what’s creating an anti inflammatory response. And then your body is then oversee accreting more inflammatory compounds, they kind of add to the mix, right? So your body’s overdoing it. And you have natural anti inflammatory compounds via cortisol and progesterone in your body. And if you don’t have enough reserves there to kind of let’s say, cover that up or neutralize it. It can really create more and more problems. That’s that’s a big one. I mean, here’s the summary. estrogens role in allergic disease remains complex, as allergenic as allergic disease continues to increase in the prevalence and effect women is fortunately gaining a fuller understanding of its effects. Basically, it’s talking about xeno estrogens and hormonal imbalances driving more allergy issue. It does it because it modulates the immune system, T cells, immune cells, B cells, it’s affecting all of the immune system, because we’re throwing a lot more histamine, leukotrienes and other immune compounds that are just putting our body into a more inflammatory state, if you will.

Evan Brand: Make sense i mean that once again, we’re back to external exposure, meaning potentially environmental but when we say environmental, that’s not just nature, it’s not like that anymore. It’s contaminated. You’ve got so estrogen.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly estrogens may polarize T cells and cause more th to immune response that’s kind of more of our antibody immune response. So you may get a lot more of that. Estrogen promotes the class switching of B cells. To immunoglobulin e, IGE is going to be a product that those are eosinophils so it’s going to promote more in a more allergenic side of your immune system via eosinophils. And then of course, estrogen promotes the degranulation of mast cell base fill so base fills are in your blood their immune cells just like you eosinophils are when they start to go into your tissues, they can start they become mast cells, essentially a mast cells produce histamine and we know histamine increases all these leukotrienes and, and cytokines, which are part of this whole allergenic immune reaction. So you can see how all these things kind of, um, you know, roll downstream and create more problems. So when people are listening to this, and you’re like, what the heck is he saying, just focus on this just go upstream. Anytime you get overwhelmed, always go upstream. Okay. Everything kind of gets more granular and nuanced as you go downstream. So hormonal imbalances, imbalances and progesterone, estrogen, especially when you start to have more estrogen dominance, that creates more of a pro allergic response. When cortisol starts to go out of balance, typically, either overly high acutely or chronically low. In a more chronic situation, that’s going to create more allergies, the more your sympathetic nervous system is in fight or flight due to chronic hormonal stress that can create more allergies as well. It affects your ability to digest, rest, repair, and absorb nutrients, and it sets up your digestive tract for inadequate enzyme and acid levels. And it also throws off your gut microbiome start to have more dysbiosis and that can throw off your immune system. Why? Because 80% of our immune system is in our intestines are Gault which is our gastric associated lymphoid tissue, that’s our stomach and our mouth, our mucosal associated lymphoid tissue that’s in our small intestine. hope that makes sense.

Evan Brand: It does. So, if you’re still drinking out of single use plastic water bottles, you got to quit doing that, because you were you were reading through it kind of fast. But basically what I pulled out you were saying that these, you know, estrogens, those have been linked to stimulating or irritating the mast cells. Was that right?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, let me just read this summary here. This is a big one. So female hormones appear to play a significant role in allergic diseases, with estrogens effect being the most well studied estrogen influences, immune cells, favoring that th two immune response, and it causes our B cells or B cells are basically our body’s ability to make antibodies, right? We have five antibodies, right? neutrophils, lymphocytes, eosinophils, monocytes, basophils? How do I remember it? Never let monkeys eat bananas. Okay. That’s how we learn about that in doctoral school. And so we start to have a lot of these B cells, which you know, they can be anything of these five, they start to go more towards eosinophils. And again, he for allergy, that’s how we remember that he for allergy now with the exception is parasites can also increase the ascenta fills there for parasite infections can increase your chance of allergies to see all these things connect over. So the potential role for astron and nasm is supported by epidemiological evidence and increase the asthma prevalence and severity in adult women. And by associating estrogen with changes in airway mechanics and inflammation. However, the mechanism by which it may act is quite complex, we know that exogenous compounds of estrogen activity may influence allergic diseases, how well if we’re getting exposure to potentially birth control pills, or plastics, or pesticides, in the water, hormones and the meat all of these things may potentially throw us more into an estrogen dominant state. Now this study is not saying it, I believe it’s it’s really going to be that hormone ratio. So it’s more that estrogen dominance, unnecessarily high amounts of Astrid that definitely is part of it. But I think also that that ratio, or that Oh, right here, and it says with the effects dependent on the concentration of hormones, and the concomitant presence, or absence of factors such as progesterone, so it is kind of alluding to that the absence of progesterone can also throw that immune system into a more allergenic response, which is what I’m highlighting earlier, it’s more estrogen dominance than it is just estrogen by itself

Evan Brand: Makes sense. Okay. And now I’ve got a couple papers here is talking about estrogen is very stimulatory to the mast cells to release histamine. And then the excess estrogen also is going to down regulate the DA o enzyme that clears his domain Oh, bingo, they’re inactive. And at the same time, histamine stimulates the ovaries to make more estrogen. So the net result can be a vicious cycle of estrogen to histamine to estrogen to histamine, whereas progesterone comes in and stabilizes the mast cells and actually up regulates do production, and therefore can reduce histamine. So many symptoms of estrogen dominance are actually symptoms of histamine or mast cell activation. And then we know like mast cells, and histamine play a role in endometriosis and also pmdd. So that’s, that’s pretty cool. And this is an epidemic problem. You and I kind of talk about it. Like it’s this nuanced thing, but no, this is going on in hundreds of millions of women around the world and probably more so in women than men. But this issue can definitely happen in men also.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, so I don’t want men to kind of feel left out here. There’s a lot of men that have a lot of estrogen imbalance issues as well due to the environment, poor detoxification, gynecomastia excess of just being overweight, there’s some of those same mechanisms that are happening here, member fats can produce estrogens as well. So I don’t want our guy friends to be left out in this here. So just know there’s still a lot of the same mechanisms that are at play. Of course, we’re not going to be you know, hitting the hormones the same way. But we’re going to be looking at the adrenals are same way we’re going to be cutting out environmental hormones, we’re going to be looking at the toxification and your body’s ability to clear these excess of hormones. Of course, if we’re seeing women that come in with birth control pills, we’re going to try to hit that via a different mechanism. without throwing off the hormones, there’s a lot of ways we can hit this. I’m really happy that we’re talking about this because this is something that I see endemic in a lot of my female patients and male too. So I’m glad that we’re on top of this. And we’re not going to be going over too much on the supplement side cut for this because we talked about it last time. So please click down below and look for that previous podcast. But the big thing I would say with my female patients and or hormone patients listening is we’re going to look at potentially using endogenous progesterone, depending on the levels, we’re going to use herbs to help modulate estrogen and progesterone. So some of those herbs could be chaste tree, or maka or dawn quai. There’s a lot of other herbs that we use to modulate that we may use things like ashwagandha rhodiola, ginseng things to help modulate cortisol, of course, we’re going to be fixing a lot of the diet and lifestyle strategies, whether it’s blood sugar, inflammatory foods, sleep, of course, all of the healthy diet and lifestyle, things are foundational. So I’m not going to go into all of that, because that’s all with a podcast within itself. But just kind of keep that in mind. Those are all going to be part of the foundational principles that we utilize. And also I use other palliative things like natural anti histamine, the granulators, which looked at that previous podcast. And then also we talked about sinus flush protocols, and high quality air filtration, which are going to be important components. But you know, see that previous podcast for more instruction on that.

Evan Brand: Yeah, well said last thing here, just a note, it was talking about the whole progesterone, estrogen mast cell connection. And why progesterone, of course, is going to stabilize mast cells and upregulate DAO, and it made just a note here. This is why most women feel better early in the luteal phase when progesterone is higher. So if there is like a cyclical pattern to your issues, pay attention to your cycle. That’s probably a good clue there that it is progesterone deficiency.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, part of the reason it wouldn’t feel bad those last couple of days or a week before is because that’s where we have the biggest drop in progesterone. So it’s this big drop that happens. And usually it happens a little too early. And that’s what kind of gets this whole cascade of PMS or pmdd happening, right. And it’s usually just that fall out and progesterone too soon and too hard. Usually around a 21 to 24 it can just fall out harder versus gradually coming down around day 27 or so.

Evan Brand: And you’re saying we can help blunt the drop with some of the strategies, the herbs and nutrients, getting rid of the excess estrogens in relationship all of it.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yep. And don’t get me wrong. utilizing some of these natural anti histamines that we talked about in podcast one is helpful. But we just have to always draw a line is this the root cause and so I always want to make sure patients know this is not the root cause, but it’s buying us time. And it’s helping us deal with the histamine while we work on all the other diet and lifestyle and hormonal things. And then over time, you become less reliant on those things. And it’s better than taking medications that cause you to be drowsy and brain foggy throughout the day, or even things that add more steroids in your body to which could be more destructive. 

Evan Brand: Absolutely. Well, if you need to reach out and get help, please do. If you need to reach Dr. J, you can at his website, And he does console’s worldwide via phone, FaceTime, Skype, whoever you need to reach him. He’s there. If you need to reach out to me my website, we have all the information in regards to scheduling. It’s a piece of cake and you can book a intro call to discuss your symptoms, your goals, see if you’re a good fit for care, we’d love to help you out, get you off the roller coaster get you off the merry go round, unless you like that kind of thing. But these medical merry go rounds are not something fun. So we want to try to get you off of that.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Totally. I have three patients this last week. Two women, one man, one man who had a significant 80% reduction in lifelong allergies, doing a lot of these strategies. So I mean, these things aren’t esoteric, like there’s a lot of thought leaders out there that just talk about things, but they aren’t in the clinical trenches with their sleeves rolled up dealing with people working on this and actually getting results. So you know, I have quote, I have, you know, strong experience in this Evan does too, and we’re seeing it so when you guys are hearing the things we’re talking about this isn’t theoretical. This transcends what you’re reading the study. This is real. So I don’t We say that just to give you guys a lot of motivation and hope that if you’re listening, just start applying it. And then if you’re feeling confused or overwhelmed, we’re here for you. There’ll be a link down below where you can click to reach out to us and we’re here to help y’all. And if this information resonates, please find a family member or a friend that you can share it with because we really appreciate that.

Evan Brand: Awesome, we’ll take good care. We’ll be in touch next week. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Have a good chat with you have a good one, y’all. Bye now. 

Evan Brand: See ya. Bye.


Recommended products:
Allerclear Histamine Support
Nasaline Sinus Flush Bottle
Xlear packets
Xlear rescue spray
Navage Nasal Irrigation
NeilMed Sinus Rinse Complete Kit
Xlear Sinus Rinse Kit
Austin Air Healthmate Plus
Air Doctor Air Purifier
Whole House Water Filter
Water Filtration Devices
Clearly Filtered

Audio Podcast:

Managing Environmental Allergies | Podcast #309

In this latest podcast, Dr. J and Evan are sharing their approach in managing patients who are dealing with environmental allergies. Dr. J and Evan have some recommendations for good digestive support, allergens,  home air filters, etc. to identify the root issue and address the problem! 

Environmental allergies can cause mild to severe symptoms, including sneezing, headaches, fatigue, and coughing. Preventing exposure to environmental allergens is the best way to treat them. You may not be able to avoid the allergens that trigger your symptoms. Your healthcare provider can help you create a plan for treating your allergies through home remedies and medications.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

In this episode, we cover:

1:32        Environmentally Sensitive Patients

4:01       Checking Environmental Allergy Issues

8:35        Autoimmune Diet

14:46      Air Filters

17:44      VOCs (Volatile Organic Compound)

23:50     Gut Healing Nutrients

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Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And we are live it’s Dr. J here in the house with Evan brand. Today we’re going to be chatting about supporting and getting to the root cause of your environmental allergies. Evan, how are we doing today man? 

Evan Brand: Doing well, excited to dive into this because the leaves are falling at the time we’re talking. And so many people complain, I just got a new, different I guess a a better life insurance plan and the lady came over, you know, the examiner who comes and takes your blood work and stuff for your life insurance. And she comes in and she’s like, Oh, my God, my head is some old lady, my head, my eyes, my nose, my ears. I’m like, what’s going on? And she’s like these, these outdoor allergies. And she was just completely miserable. And she’s on all the conventional meds. And I talked with her and asked her, you know, would you eat for breakfast? pastries, you know, so it’s just interesting that conventional mindset is out there, allergies are just something that happens. And there’s nothing I can do besides just take the over the counter, or the prescription allergy meds. And that’s it. And that’s as far as the conversation goes, which is kind of sad, because I would argue for many people, we’ve seen hundreds and hundreds of cases of people who actually were able to get off of their allergy meds or at least significantly reduce the dosing of them by addressing the root cause, which is what these drugs do not do, they do not address the root cause of these issues. They just help modulate the symptoms, whether it’s working on the histamine issue, or some sort of immune modulating effect, or potentially steroids, but none of that’s root cause. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 100%. And so the problem is, a lot of times with these type of environmentally sensitive patients, they’re going to be stuck on some kind of a steroid inhaler for a while, whether it’s computer or albuterol, or some kind of steroid, some kind of Singulair medication, which does some immune modulating or some kind of a, you know, h2, five ht to kind of receptor, anti histamine, right? These things all have side effects, they all have fatigue and brain fog as a potential side effect. And none of them are getting to the root issue. And the problem with like steroids, for instance, they tend to weaken your immune system as well. And then they tend to when you’re putting a whole bunch of steroids in your body every day artificially, your adrenal output may actually start going down, so then your adrenal strength starts to drop. And you may not be able to resist or deal with inflammation or stress as well. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, yeah. So let’s talk about some of like the basic foundations of this, where would you start with somebody who comes in with allergies in regards to testing, you and I are not typically going to run like a, quote, allergy test, you know, you’ll go to like a dermatology place, they’ll run like a patch test, or an allergist, may try to run testing for graphs and all of that. But to be honest, your opinion may differ. But I don’t really care what that test says about grass or pollen allergies, because that’s, that’s the immune system that can be overreacting. So I’m going to be looking more at the functional test. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, so my perspective on these things, I always tell patients, I draw a line between cause and effect. Okay, causal things are things that are going to dictate and change treatment. So I put allergies, on the effect side, like it’s an artifact of something that’s happening due to other upstream issues. So as we move things around, upstream, above, below, inside out, everything works downstream and starts changing the effects. So we look at the effects, we may be able to trace them up to certain areas on the cause side, which is good to know. So I only talk about effects to the point where I can get closer to the cause and then make different causal changes, whether it’s diet lifestyle, supplement, doing different functional tests to assess the function of those underlying systems that are part of that causal link. 

Evan Brand: Check your mic, it sounds like it switched over to maybe like a headset or some other mic from the big boy. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Let’s see here. I’m testing here. Now. We’re pretty good on my end.

Evan Brand: Talk into it closer. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Testing, testing, one, two, yeah, there you go.

Evan Brand: Okay, I don’t know what to put, but it was on a different one. For some reason for a minute. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I’ll put a little bit closer here. No problem. So the first thing I always look at when we are dealing with these kind of issues is I’m looking at inflammation. So the first kind of major lover, we’re going to change the diet. Because if we are stressed and inflamed due to inflammation in the foods, whether it’s too much processed sugar, excess omega six to omega three fatty acids, too much pro inflammatory fats from from junky conventional meats, too much carbohydrate or grains, these things are going to affect us negatively. Maybe we don’t have enough really good saturated fats or enough good omega threes, or enough you know, keeping the carbohydrates down we have too much insulin, too much inflammation. These things can affect our immune system. And the more stressed our immune system becomes the more sensitive or overly sensitive it becomes. So it’s kind of like you know, your neighbor knocks on the door and you’re like pulling out your hand gun going to your door ready to attack you being overly sensitive, right, your neighbor just wants a cup of milk, right? So I always look at it as we want to be able to respond proportionally from an immune standpoint. And part of that is is decreasing inflammation. So the first thing I look at is where is inflammation coming from. So let’s make sure inflammation from foods under control to make sure inflammation from blood sugar, how to control let’s make sure we have the really good fat soluble vitamins and not too much junky refined process, plant fatty acids. So we look at all those things make sure insulin is equal, not too much carbohydrates, cut out the grains cut out the casein written dairy all these things can be more inflammatory. So we have to look at all those vectors now. We can dive in deeper now to gut and infections and CBOE and H. pylori, but that’s the first thing I look at because that can significantly come down the immune system. Now, next, we have a lot of histamine kind of symptoms, a lot of allergy issues, skin issues, breathing issues, headache issues. We’ll also look at dropping down higher histamine foods as well. Whether it’s pork or coffee, or teas or citrus, or fermented foods, some of these foods are considered to be like the holy grail of paleo, right like oh, pasture fed bacon. Oh, that’s supposed to be good, right? Or like kombucha or sauerkraut or fermented probiotic food. Those supposed to be good things right? Well, they are but if you have a lot of histamine issues, they may be enough to put you over the top and we just got to be really careful with it. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, luckily I don’t have any outdoor allergy issues, but I have had issues with histamine foods so I am following low histamine diet and I feel really good on it. I feel much more clear headed. You know, excess histamine can really affect your, your your mind to like in terms of emotions. Let me share my screen real quick before we leave the diet conversation, because this is something pretty new to me. But something I’ve been experimenting with clients, and it’s been going well, I’ve been looking at this, what is called oral allergy syndrome. And basically, we’ve talked about gluten cross reactivity, you and I’ve discussed this before, where this idea that certain foods like chocolate or rice or potato or corn can be cross reactive for gluten, meaning that certain foods will make the body think it’s getting exposed to gluten, so then it creates some of this antibody reaction. Now this oral allergy syndrome is kind of the same thing to gluten cross reactivity as foods are to outdoor pollens. So check this out. So it goes into like your rag weeds and mug warts and grasses and certain tree allergies that people have but there’s foods that can cross react for these tree pollens. So here’s some of the listing here. And people can just look it up for yourself oral allergy center, but these people that are complaining about their allergies, what I’m doing is I’m putting them on kind of like this oral allergy syndrome approach. So these are all the foods that are cross reactive. So look at fruits you’ve got like oranges, melons, watermelons, rahzel-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Those are high in histamine though, right? Yeah, a lot of those are very high histamine. So that makes sense. They’re almost all high histamine. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, let me zoom in here. So then you go into your vegetables. Once again, these are gonna be like corn can be high histamine, so compiz. And then you go into like your nuts. So like hazelnuts and walnuts, you’ve got chickpeas, you’ve got almonds, which are interesting. I feel fine with almonds. I’ve had some people get off of them. And they feel better, though. So anyway, when you look at symptoms of this oral allergy thing, it’s itching of the throat, mouth, lips or tongue, it’s swelling. And then of course, it can be more severe. hives, asthma can be involved anyway. So So yeah, so you’re right. It’s kind of like a low histamine approach with a club basically auto.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It’s basically autoimmune. Low histamine.

Evan Brand: That’s right.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s basically what it is, which is good. That’s a good first kind of template because you cut out people I see a lot of patients are like, but I’ve I don’t have an autoimmune condition. Why should I do an autoimmune diet? It’s like, well, because an autoimmune diet isn’t just specifically needed for autoimmune patients. And autoimmune diet is kind of like the ultimate anti inflammatory diet. And people that have autoimmune issues, they need the ultimate anti inflammatory diet because they have excess inflammation. And their immune system is part of the reason why that is because their immune system is joining in the attack. It’s like you got self attack, it’s like you just got beaten up. And then now you’re punching yourself as well. Right? You beat yourself up. And so the more we can reduce inflammation, just think of an autoimmune diet as the ultimate anti inflammatory diet. And it’s independent of whether you have a diagnosed autoimmune condition or not. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, yeah. So we, you know, we personally and clinically implement that a lot and, and it works great for people. Okay, so let’s move on. Let’s go into some of the other stuff. You know, you and I’ve talked about this bucket analogy, and I would argue the outdoor environmental allergies are really just a sign that the, the bucket is already full, so they can’t handle the outdoor environment. I mean, our ancestors, they were outside all the time. They probably didn’t have these allergy issues. Why do we have them? Why are allergies in kids such a huge thing now? Why are so many kids on inhalers and stuff? I mean, this is not something that’s happened until the last hundred years and I would argue toxins are going to be a big one. So if we’re talking pesticides in the food, if we’re talking The impact on the gut with regards to the pesticide killing off the good bacteria in the gut, and then you’ve got kids with bacterial overgrowth. As you and I did a whole podcast on cebo. And histamine, we know there’s a huge link between bacterial overgrowth and histamine problem. So meaning your buckets already going to be so full just based on you having overgrowth of bad guys in the gut, what if your kids had ear infections, you put them on antibiotics, and then they have an overgrowth of bad guys and potential yeast like Candida problems as well, that’s already going to fill up the bucket so much, they’re not going to tolerate the outside. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. So we have kind of the diet stuff change, that’s gonna make a big difference, right, autoimmune, low histamine, we’re gonna look at the gut, right? People that have histamine issues or allergies, they tend to have poor digestion. So even a healthy diet, with foods not broken down properly, may be an issue. So we may want to work on good digestive support enzymes acids, we’re going to want to look at the gut, like you mentioned, if they have a lot of, let’s say, mold or mycotoxins coming in from their home, that could be a stressor, they have a lot of yeast or Candida that could be a mycotoxin stressor as well. They have si Bo, or H. pylori, that could be a stressor to all of these things can be potential stressors on the gut side. So we’ll kind of set the table with all the first the first things I mentioned, we’ll work on getting the digestion better. And then we’ll look at seeing what’s going on in the guts. Now, in the meantime, as a couple of palliative things we can do, we can also get them on some natural histamine to granulators things that help us to break down histamine. So it’s not going to be hanging around us and creating inflammation. So those things could be stinging nettle, of course, the tender, Bromo leaner and acetyl cysteine, I have a product called our clear with a lot of those in there, that’s a great product, that’s great. We may also add in some da o which is dye aiming oxidase, it’s an enzyme found in kidney tissue. And it’s very effective at breaking down histamine as well. So we may add some of those one to two things in there, which are very helpful. And the next thing on top of that is doing some sinus rinsing techniques. Because what happens is, a lot of times the allergens, they sit up in your frontal sinus, or your maxillary sinus here in these areas here and here, frontal and maxillary, and they just sit there, and then your immune system is constantly exposed to it, it’s like being dirty, the dirts on your skin you haven’t showered. So think of is you’re doing a shower for your sinuses to flush these things out, because the top of the shower is not going to hit the insides. So the more immune sensitive you are, the more these allergens sit inside your maxillary or frontal sinus, there’s gonna be problems. So we’re going to be flushing that out two to three seconds with each nose with a really good sinus rinse bottle, two to three seconds of flow, kind of blowing your nose in between to really flush that out. And we’ll have a good filter that is still water with some kind of a mineral solution. So it’s pH balance, and some kind of xylitol or biofilm the structure to flush and break down some of that bacteria or mold junk that could be or it just allergens that could be up in your sinuses.

Evan Brand: Yeah. And how you know that you have an issue with that is if you do a sinus rent, and you have an increase or a decrease in symptoms, so any change at all. Now, some may not notice much and you’re still doing yourself a favor. However, most people that are already pretty hyper sensitized, they do notice a significant change. So what made us what that may look like could be an increase in brain fog. It could be anxiety, it could be some vision changes, it could be all of a sudden you feel more clear headed your mind your thoughts are more clear. So when I first started doing sinus rinses, I was just really like almost drunk. I was like whoa, I must have just started breaking down biofilm killing something off in there. Now I do the scientists rinse and I get more clarity. So that’s something you want to look for and silver. Some people use silver up the nose, there are some nasal sprays that have some silver hydrosol in there. You mentioned they actually are essential oil blends. There’s a couple that you and I use that are designed for the sinuses. So those can be really helpful. And like you mentioned, it’s going to be kind of draining the bucket. So if you clean up the diet, if you’re working on the gut infections if you’re going organic, and then now you’re doing sinus rinsing, you’ve already and you’re doing the herbal anti histamines, like you’re talking about vitamin C, I want to throw that in as well vitamin C can help to break ground. Or it can kind of speed up the degradation of the histamine. So for me, if I know there’s going to be a high histamine meal, I’ll do a little bit of the DA o or some vitamin C and or course attend beforehand, and it can really really help blunt the effects of it so histamines addicting to I mean, it is a neurotransmitter. So it’s really tough for certain people, when they go low histamine, they’ll start to crave high histamine foods. And that’s a pretty interesting phenomenon that I’ve seen. And like chocolate, you know, in general is going to be higher his domain and so a lot of people really have cravings for chocolate ramp up once on a low histamine diet. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And as we get the inflammation under control, we’re flushing out some of the sinus stuff. Oh, also, we may also get a really good high quality air filter to get the environment really clean. Maybe there’s a lot of pollens or cedar in your home. Maybe there’s some mold toxins. We get That flushed out in the air, we get some of the food under control, we get some natural anti histamine support, we work on better digestion, get the inflammation in the diet, get rid of some of the gut stuff that’s going on some of the gut infections or gut permeability stressors, and we can start to add certain foods back in over the next few months. So this is not like a death sentence. And it always comes down to like histamine load, right? Maybe with all those other things in the past you had you’re gonna have symptoms, right. But as soon as we’re flushing out the nose, changing the diet, adding that support may be able to start getting some foods back in one at a time. So we just got to keep an eye on that. 

Evan Brand: Yep, yeah, in the air purifiers are huge. I mean, I would not live in a house period, no matter how clean new beautiful the houses, I would never live in any house that doesn’t have an air purifier. So I know you’ve got one in your office, I’ve got one in my office bedrooms, living areas. We’ve got them everywhere. I mean, and I’m not in the city, but I still want to make sure that I’ve got good filtration. And so we love and use the Austin’s so-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yep, we have, we have the Austin air too. So we’ll put the links down below Evan, for kind of the links for our sites, if you guys want to support the show or want to get a high quality air filter, like we probably recommend the same, the healthmate Plus is a good first start. Or if you’re really sensitive, the allergy machine is a good second one. But the helpmate plus is my favorite. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, I mean, in terms of bang for your buck, that one’s the best one, I’ve got the molecule too. We’ve talked about this in the past, but the molecule is different technology, the blue light on it is kind of annoying, especially at night, because you’re getting blasted by the light. So you’ve got it pretty much turn that thing off or put it on dark mode at night, which then all that means is it’s just running the pre filter, which essentially does nothing. And there is sort of a plasticky smell, due to the way it kills the VCs and such on the molecule. So the molecules, you could call it more of a chemical treatment of your air where it basically breaks up pollutants and toxins and kind of destroys them into really small particles versus the Austin is more of a good catcher’s mitt. So that’s why we prefer that one. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, the molecule has the light, the PET technology, the photo electronic light in there, which isn’t the best for bedrooms, because you don’t want those lights active. So we’ll use the Austin air, helpmate plus, which has the 15 pounds of zeolite. And activated charcoal 30 pounds total, also has the habit attached to it. And then it has the potassium chloride in there as well that filters out the voc. So that’s what makes it a little bit more unique. The right yes, mate doesn’t have the regular helpmate doesn’t have the potassium component. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, it’s incredible. I mean, that thing is so heavy, it literally feels like it’s like military grade, people throw that term around. But that thing is heavy duty. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It is like I have some filter, I have some shelves just put into my office here. And they’re off gassing a little bit. So last night, I kept the Austin on high just to filter out any VOC’s that are, you know, in the air because of the off gassing.

Evan Brand: Yeah, let’s go into the VOC’s for a minute because you know, we kind of got off the histamine topic. So yeah, you mentioned reducing the load. Now, if you’re in a new home, and you were not extremely anal about all of your choices, there’s going to be potential formaldehyde, there’s going to be vlccs volatile organic compounds that are going to come off of your paint. If you have vinyl windows, they’re going to come off of your window frames. They’re any glues that were used on your plumbing fixtures, any of your baseboards that were painted any of your cabinetry in your kitchen that was pre finished or pre painted from the factory that comes in that stuff can off gas for literally years. And now we build our houses so tight and so energy efficient, which saves us a little bit of money, but now the houses don’t breathe. And so now these vo C’s even the EPA says indoor air pollution is 10 to 100 times more toxic than outdoor air pollution. And so I’m extremely anal and I’m actually building a course out on like healthy homes, because I’ve had to pick and choose like a lot of materials. But the long story short it and paints to even low or no VOC paints like Sherwin Williams and however you pronounce it, some of those conventional brands. They’re still toxic. Yes, they may say low or no voc, but they’re still toxic chemical. So you only want to use mineral based paints, just and I’ve talked about Roma bio, being a good mineral paint. That stuff is amazing. And then drywall too. I mean, you’ve got different chemicals that could be in certain dry walls. If they’re not gypsum based. They’re going to be synthetic. You’ve got flooring, chemicals. So you’ve got seals, you’ve got varnishes you’ve got clear coats on stuff. If you have like wood wood beams, I mean, it’s easy to fill a house with toxins is all I’m saying. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, I mean, just if you’re going to do painting or any of that stuff, right, just make sure you’re out of that room. Like when we do any painting. We try to be out of the room and we just put a really good air filter in that room and put it on high and just do your best to suck out the vo C’s may off gas for a while. But if you have a good vo C on there, a good voc air filter on there you should be okay. And then just you know, take your good natural support. It’s hard to avoid these things at some time. And then the more sensitive you are the more it’s an issue the less sensitive less of an issue but just have a good air filter in the background. So you’re sucking all these things up. And then of course would be some of the flame retardant things you may get on couches or Especially you see it on kids stuff, a lot of kids mattresses, carrying, you know, car seats, those kind of things. So we always get flame retardant free. That’s the pbds polybrominated diphenyl ethers, which are the flame retardants, so we’d always get those things pbde free. And then we just have a really good air filter, if something does have it, so we’re filtering it up. 

Evan Brand: Yeah, it’s even in kids pajamas, which is just unbelievable. We had some clothes that were gifted to us for when our when our girls were really little, and it would say flame resistant. On the tag, we’re like, oh, my god, they’re putting flame retardants and kids clothing like this is unbelievable, because those are very hard chemicals to get out of the body. In fact, cola Starmie in a binder you can use for mold toxin is one of the only things that actually gets these flame retardants out of your bloodstream and out of your brain. So it’s pretty unbelievable that these things are everywhere. And so not to divert into the toxin podcast. But that’s the note about lowering your toxin load in your home to lower your bucket so that you can tolerate the outdoor environment better. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. So the first thing that we like to do is make sure we decrease inflammation in our body. That’s the first thing, we may look at digestion, look at the gut, look at the microbiome, look at things that are jacking up our immune system. Of course, if cortisol is out of balance, either extremely high or extremely low that could throw things off. We may also look at strategizing sinus flushing, I have a video on that, we’ll put that video in the show notes, you can actually watch me doing an actual protocol, getting the air filtration dialed in. If you’re going to use paints with off gassing, just try to leave their home for a day or two and have a good air filter. And those are all good strategies. And then after that would be you know, changing the diet, adding in some natural anti histamine support and kind of going from there and start with the low hanging fruit. If you have problems, get a good functional medicine doctor in there to really look at investigate come up with a plan for you.

Evan Brand: Yeah, it can go a lot deeper than that. So we’ve done podcasts on these individual things. But mast cell issues, mast cells are part of the immune system that release histamine, your mast cells can become activated when you get exposed to some sort of a pathogen or a toxin. So Lyme, bartonella, mold, these are three big ones that trigger the mast cells to dump more histamine, those are big triggers. For me, I used to not have histamine issues at all. And then I developed some getting much, much better all the time. But, you know, there was kind of a straw that broke the camel’s back for me. And so I’ve dealt with it personally. But you know, we see it a lot clinically too. So you got to dig deeper if some of the low hanging fruit is not being addressed, or you got to do that first. But then once it is addressed, if you still have problems, and there is probably something deeper heavy metals, other types of toxins, you got to you got to fix all of it. So you can’t just go pop the course attend and go gluten free. And everything’s magical. For some people, it may be that easy. But the people that Justin and I are working with, they’re people that have been to 5 10 15 20 doctors before they get to us. So these people have probably already dialed into low hanging fruit. And that’s why we’re here clinically. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I find with those people, they tend to have a lot of environmental stuff, there may be some mold in their system, they may have some air, they may have some air quality issues. And they may have a lot of gut issues. Because the more you’re 80% of your immune system in your gut. And so if your guts permeable and you have gut stressors, and you’re not digesting foods, well, that’s going to create more gut stress, more immune stress, the more immune stress you have, it’s because your guts more permeable, and then you’re just everything that you’re getting exposed to on the outer world is getting interacted with by your immune system. And normally we’d have some kind of a barrier protection. But now everything’s everything is now responding to your body and your immune system is seeing all of it and that can be a problem when normally there’d be some kind of a mucosal barrier protection. Now, there’s not that protective barrier is now gone. It’s like the front door is now unlocked, so your immune get exposed to a lot of things that it normally wouldn’t that gut permeability is a big, big first thing we have to look at. 

Evan Brand: Definitely, definitely. So there is a place for gut healing nutrients. There is a place for probiotics like we use a lot of Bifido really, really high dose Bifido can be helpful. spore based probiotics can be helpful. Medicinal mushrooms can be helpful to help modulate the immune system. We like herbs too. There’s Andrographis and Astragulus and elderberry. And I mean, there’s a ton that we could go into these can be helpful, it really just depends on where somebody is at because you can send the immune system the wrong direction. So an autoimmune cases and such there are some times where we may not go straight to mushrooms, we may just focus on the gut first. But once again, it’s kind of a case by case basis here.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, exactly. Anything else you want to add today?

Evan Brand: I would just tell people that there are answers, there are solutions to this. So if your allergist is not getting to the root cause then feel free to reach out to one of us. We’d be happy to take you to the next level of healing. Look into the gut look into all of these different body systems kind of get your total body burden figured out, and then we’ll help plot the step one, step two, step three, how to get you feeling better. So if you need help clinically, don’t hesitate please reach out to Dr. Justin at or me Evan Brand at We’re here for you guys. So we love helping you we’re extremely blessed with the knowledge we’ve gained, you know, personally and clinically, and it’s very rewarding to get people relief. That’s the that’s what this whole entire episode was about relief. It’s not fun when you want to go hike with your kids or grandkids and you can’t because you’re miserable. And then you got to do your inhaler, because you can’t breathe. I mean, God, that’s just not a way to live. And there is there is there was there is a way out of it. So that’s what we’re here for. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Excellent. Well really appreciate today’s chat if you guys want to reach in for Dr. Evan and for myself, we’ll be happy to connect with you all and kind of go over the different algorithms and what’s going on underneath the hood so we can get to a lasting solution. Hey, Evan, great chatting with you, man. You have an awesome day. We’ll be in touch. 

Evan Brand: You too. Take care now. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Take care, bye.


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Audio Podcast:

Natural Allergy Solutions | Podcast #225

Allergies are issues caused by an immune system that is hyper-responsive. Stress in the stress bucket, antigens which are foreign compounds, are some of the big causes of the hyper-responsive immune system.

In this episode, learn the things to look at in the stress bucket such as food stress, emotional stress, exercise, too much, too little, infections, environmental antigens like cedar, dander, pollens and other things to help fix these issues in a functional medicine perspective. Answer why it tends to become a non-issue when one is healthy or when inflammation is under control. Also, learn why those little bits of antigens may be enough to tip one over when inflammation is already topped up and antigen or stress bucket is full.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

In this episode, we cover:

02:33    Hyper Responsive Immune System and Allergies

10:26    Nutritional Functional Medicine Options for Allergies

15:09    Fungal Infection Solutions

20:05    Quercetin for Mast Cells

28:13    Poor Breathing Solutions


Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Hey there, it’s Dr. Justin Marchegiani, how you all doing today? Evan Brand, my man, what’s going on, how you doin’?

Evan Brand: Hey man, happy Monday to you. My pink office is gone, so that’s great.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Great!

Evan Brand: I’ve now got grey office, and for anybody doing, uh, interior work, they need to just get a hold of you, you’re my interior designer now. You gave me the idea of this good grey color that I have.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, it’s knitting needles grey. We just had my son’s playroom paint to that same color. I just love the greys like that because one, that room, like it’ll go when there’s a little more light or look a little more blue, and then look- look a little more slate or- or dark grey, and then it just kinda blends with everything, it’s- it’s surely Williams number one color of the year like three years ago, and I just- I just have it in a lot of my key rooms.

Evan Brand: Yeah. So, the paint brand I did is Romabio, R-O-M-A-B-I-O. So part of allergy is k- is your indoor environment, you know-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yes.

Evan Brand: -the NPA talks about how dirty indoor air quality is compared to outdoor air quality. So if you’re doing any remodeling, you’re doing any painting in your home, if you’re using garbage products, even some of the stuff labeled as low VOC, it still could contain toxic chemicals, the Romabio is all mineral-based, and so you literally smell nothing. And so, there’s no off gassing, you don’t have to open the windows, you’re not gonna get sick when you put it in especially if you’re chemical sensitive person or if you have allergies, you know, you’re gonna be just fine. And even if you’ve got a garbage paint that you wanna paint over, you can just paint right over with Romabio. So, that would be step 1 for today’s talk on allergies is, optimize your indoor air quality. Humans, we spend way too much time indoors, that’s just what we do now because of our society and we’re connected to computers all day. How could you put a desk outside, yeah, you could but then you might not be able to see the screen. So, I do try to work outside when the weather’s nice and sit in the shade under a covered patio, but most of the time we’re gonna be indoors. So back in the corner there, you see my Molekule Air Purifier, Justin’s got one in his office too. I’ve had great success with it so far. The air in here really does s- smell really fresh. It’s almost like you’re at the beach. It’s just a really, you know, fresh air uh sensation, it’s not an ionizer, you don’t want those, you don’t negative ions being created from your air purifier because what those do, is it actually sticks all the toxins and mold and pet dander, it sticks it to the walls like a magnet, so it- the ionizer takes it out of the air but it sticks it to your wall which you don’t want. And what we’re using is a technology called peco, P-E-C-O which actually destroys the- the pollutants, it destroys the dander, it destroys the mold spores. And that’s a far better situation, uh, in terms of your- your air purification.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 100%. So, air is really important. So today’s podcast is on allergies as we allude it to. So, allergies are gonna be an issue when your immune system is hyper responsive, okay? And one of the big things that’s gonna make your immune system more hyper responsive, is gonna be stress in your stress bucket, or an allergy terminology, we call it, antigens. Antigens are like foreign outside compounds. So, anything that’s gonna drive up inflammation, whether it’s foods, like gluten or dairy, or sugar, or aspartame or MSG, uh, grains, these food- they just have more inflammation. Inflammation is gonna drive prostaglandins, right, these are like- these are cosanoid type of uh- co- ho- almost like hormone-like compounds, they can increase things like prostaglandin e2 which is more inflammatory, right? It’s gonna create more histamine, it’s gonna create more swelling and vasodilation, it’s gonna create more congestions, and of course a lot of foods also are very mucus forming too. So we have mucous, we have congestion, we have stagnant lymph, and we’re adding all these inflammation from our food, and then also stress will do it because cortisol is gonna be a- a stress hormone, it’s an anti-inflammatory hormone but it does- it’s very catabolic. So it’s gonna break tissue down. It’s gonna cause constriction. It could- it could- gonna create adrenaline which is gonna cause constriction that’s gonna decrease blood flow and a lot of waste too. And it’s going to- uhm, decrease your sex hormones, which is your ability to heal, repair, recover and be anabolic. So we look at everything, you know, from a functional medicine perspective, we’re looking at our stress bucket, and we’re doing a really good history evaluating food stress, emotional stress, exercise, too much, too little, infections, uhm, and then we’ll also look at environmental antigens like, in Austin, cedar is a big one. Dander, right, various grasses, right? These types of things, pollens, these can go into your stress bucket. Now, the more you’re healthy, the more your inflammation is under the control, the more it becomes a non-issue. But of your inflammation is already topped up, and your antigen/stress bucket is full, those little bit of antigens may be enough to tip you over.

Evan Brand: Yup, well said. And there’s other things that can add into that bucket too. So like bacterial overgrowth which is something that we’re always testing for via stool.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Right.

Evan Brand: Uh, we’re looking for signs of leaky gut, so we’re look-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yes.

Evan Brand: -for inflammation in the gut, we’ll look for your secretory IgA level on your stool test-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Right.

Evan Brand: -uh, we could even see like some microscopic bleeding, you know, there’s a marker called a colt blood that we look at, and that could be related to major inflammatory issues, or even some type of autoimmune gut condition. So if you’re looking at this and then you combine the diet, if someone is eating a high histamine diet, this is gonna be like alcohol, you know, your wine, your beer, uh, a lot of fermented foods people go crazy with now like sauerkraut and soy sauce and kombucha, those are all gonna be higher histamine. Cured meat, so, a lot of people doing bacon in the paleo community, that’s cool, but if it’s cured, those cured meats could be a problem, and then of course like dried fruit, I see tons of people eating like dried mango slices, that’s real high histamine. So you take your environmental allergies like you’ve got your cedar fever, plus maybe you’ve got some gluten in dairy in there, and then you’re snackin’ on dried mango slices, you probably gonna have some issues.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. So we always wanna look at what- what’s the root underlying issue? We have a hypersensitive immune system, we do a really good audit as a functional medicine doc to figure out all the foods that could be driving it. Okay. I see significant reduction in allergies when we just get the inflammatory foods out. Dairy is a big mucus one, grains are a big one, and then also the hidden inflammation like in the sauces and those kind of things. Now, once we kinda have that looked at and supported, getting the hormones and the cortisol under control is huge. Because the more our cortisol is increased, that can affect our immune system, right? Typically, that can create a hyper responsive immune system and even a- a decreased immune response. But typically, with allergies, we’re seeing a higher immune response especially the TH2 part of the immune- so that- that’s like, we have our TH1 part of our immune system, that’s our cytotoxic immune system, that’s our like our natural killer cells, our helper cells. Think of that as a special forces of our immune system, right? It’s the navy seals, it’s the delta force, it’s the army rangers, it’s the first line of defense in attack. Then we have TH2 part of our immune system, that’s like our humoral, or antibody-based immune response. And these are like the infantry that comes in like a week later. This is the same kind of immune response that when you get a vaccination, you’re trying to stimulate these antibodies on the humoral side, to go and create memory cells, and these memory cells kinda linger in the background and they can go attack things. Now when you have a lot of allergies, a lot of times you can have this hyper TH2, that’s hyper antibody response, and that’s- that’s a big one. So, typically, you know, when you vaccinate, you’re gonna jack that immune response up. So there is some data with, I know the DPT vaccine that one of the side effects is increased allergenicity later on in life, and I think part of it is, just winding up that TH2 part of the immune system. So, we’d look at the foods, we’d look at the stress, we’d look at sleep, right, and then there are additional supplements that we can use to kind of curtail and kind of bump that immune response down. Now, low hanging fruit clinically, I find high levels of allergens, also seems to correlate with low stomach acids. So, I find not being able to digest your food, food sitting in your gut, putrefying and a lot of that because of low HCL, low hydrochloric acid, and low enzymes ’cause HCL and enzymes are brother and sister. We need good acidity; we need good nice high levels of acidity to stimulate our pancreas to make enzymes. So we need HCL, that creates enzyme activity, right? Then we- we make our proteolytic enzymes, our lipolytic enzymes and then we also have bile salt production. And our bile does pull out a lot of junk too. So, we need good bile to bind up a lot of that crap that may be from our environment too. So we have HCL, enzymes, proteolytic – protein digesting, lipolytic – fat digesting, and then our bile salts which helps with fat as well, and does some other junk in there that we wanna release out our stool.

Evan Brand: Yeah, makes sense. Well, people say, “Oh, when I was younger, I didn’t have allergies, but now that I hit age 40, or age 50 or age 60, I have allergies”. We know that as you age, you make less and less stomach acid every year. So sounds like if you wanna battle this, supplementing with enzymes, and then you mentioned the putrefying in the gut, there- there is exactly what we’re talking about with a bacterial overgrowth or a candida overgrowth, or potentially a parasitic infections is that, those infections including H-Pylori are gonna reduce the stomach acid level even more. So, if you just go out, “Okay, Dr. J said enzyme and acids”, you make around buy digestive enzymes and acids and you don’t get better, and that’s because there’s still another layer. There’s still another root cause that hasn’t been addressed that could be the infection piece, or as you mentioned, cortisol, it could be the cortisol, pulling apart the tight junctions in the gut barrier, then that allowed bacterial overgrowth. So if you fix the gut bugs but then you still don’t go upstream to fix cortisol, you’re still gonna end up in the same situation with allergies again. This is not, by the way, a deficiency of antihistamine drugs. You’ve noticed we’ve not talked about drugs. Maybe we should spend just a couple minutes talking about the conventional treatment for allergies, you know, what the ENT doctor is going to do for you in this situation, “Oh, doc, I have allergies”, the- the things they have to offer are- they’re not-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Right.

Evan Brand: -root cause.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, let’s just go over one more thing before we dive into the pharmaceutical option, and I think you can learn a lot when we contrast nutritional functional medicine options for allergies and then we can contrast it on the conventional allopathic medicine. You can really see philosophically which path are going down, like this is- there’s a big divide in the road, right? One is, we’re trying to reduce inflammation, modulate the immune system, help with drainage, help with inflammation, help with the gut microbiome, and then the other is, hey let’s- let’s give antihistamines, let’s give corticosteroids, right, let’s give uhm, things that are going to suppress the immune system, versus support, heal, nourish, and drain out. Does that make sense?

Evan Brand: Absolutely, yeah. The decongestants, those things too.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly, yeah, the e- essentially anti-histamines, right?

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So, one of the big things with the gut is the microbiomes. We talked about the hyper responsive immune system; probiotics have a huge effect at modulating the immune system. So when we have commensal bacterial overgrowth or dysbiotic bacterial overgrowth or infections or H-Pylori, typically we start to see a lot of collateral, not so good bugs starting to accumulate, right? ‘Cause you know, bad people tend to hang together, it’s very rare you just have a solo bad person by themselves, and then can create an immune response that puts us in let’s say not so good direction. So, getting some of the bad guys to dysbiotic, you know not so good stuffs or the infections under control is very helpful, and then also bringing up the beneficial bacteria, lactobacillus, bifidobacter-type of bacteria, if we’re sensitive to that, we may even use more spore biotics, like bacillus, strains, we may avoid a lot of the lactobacillus, K-CI strains, the higher histamine strains if you’re sensitive. So we may look at lower histamine strains, look at, you know, we’d avoid the para-k-ci, the k-ci we may give more spore biotic strains with the bacillus coagulans, ___[12:22] to support the microbiome which does have a modulating effect on the immune system.

Evan Brand: I’ve seen some of the lower histamine probiotics on the market, I think it’s usually unnecessary to have to do some of that specific if you just fix the gut. I’ve rarely had somebody have a problem. With you and I, I mean, we use professional healthcare companies to manufacture our products. And so, the quality is so insanely high, it’s very rare. Maybe like 1 out of a hundred or 1 out of several hundred clients who can’t tolerate our normal, high dose regular probiotic. And that’s because we usually have fixed before we come in and fertilize and add all these probiotics, you and I have already tested, and we’ve already identified and fixed any infections that would potentially be releasing histamine. You know, these different bacteria could be releasing toxins that short of- shooting at the immune system. We’ve already cleared all that out. So, the probiotics are usually tolerated versus, the maybe if you just heard this, and you thought,” Hey, just said enzymes and probiotics, I’m just gonna go buy those two things and think I’m gonna get better”, you might not ’cause you still haven’t gone to the correct order of operations.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Correct. So, I would say maybe 1 to 5 percent of my more inflammatory, very- lot of inflammation, lot of the immune dysregulation patients fall into that category, number 1. But like we’d use that, I do find a lot of people that really are reacting to probiotics, they’re throwing a whole bunch of probiotics into a tummy or a microbiome full of dysbiotic, not so good bacteria or even lots of infections. And that’s where you can get a lot of that kind of response. You know, my- my analogy, it’s just like throwing a whole bunch of seeds down, and a weed- oh, and a garden full of weeds, it’s like taking your car to a car wash, and getting it waxed before you get it washed, right?

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It’s an order of operations and how things kind of our, you know, for best practices so to speak, and it- when we incorporate a functional medicine program, that best practices and that kind of system approach is already built into the logic of what we’re doing.

Evan Brand: Yeah, I mean, it’s kinda like if you just go down the reign of supplement, I only start like pick and choose range of things, like, this is immune, I’m gonna throw it at it, and hope that it sticks, I mean, you might get some limited success with that, you know, people could go out and buy an herb like stinging nettle for example, and they could take stinging nettle, maybe they get some progress, but it still may not be root cause. You wanna talk about that now, maybe some herbs we do use?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. I think we can go there. Is there anything else you wanna highlight on the physiology or the biochems ’cause I- I really want our listeners to understand what’s happening in their body from a physiological biochem perspective, so they get the root, ’cause then when they understand what’s happening, then we have this puzzle piece whether it’s a supplement, or a drug, or a diet, or lifestyle modification, they can see how it plugs in. ‘Cause that way, people get the root cause perspective, versus the palliative, you know, paint over the rust so to speak? Is there anything else you wanna highlight on the biochem or physiology part?

Evan Brand: Yeah, now that you mentioned it, I would just say uhm, fungal infections, of the sinuses could be another problem that most people miss, and especially the ent doctors miss. So people that have lived in an environment where they’ve had high moisture and potentially mold, they may have some type of uh, fungal infection up in the sinus cavity where you can do a- a- a blend of citrus oils, in essential oil format that we put into a sinus irrigator that’s battery powered and you can pump this up into your sinus cavity and don’t actually kill off the colonization that’s happen because, your sinuses are so close to the brain. So if you’ve got a fungal infection up in here, that’s so close to your blood brain barrier. You could be releasing mycotoxins into your sinus cavity up into your brain causing allergic response even if your gut checks out okay. So I would just say make sure you’re addressing both sinus and gut at the same time.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I agree. And sometimes, some of these critters, they can hang out in the gut. Now one of the things that I do, especially with my son, ’cause he’s not quite at the age where he can blow his nose really well to get all that, you know, mucus that’s way up here in his frontal cavity out. So, we use the device called the nasaline, and then we use the neti Xlear packets which have xylitol and also so many uh- minerals and sodium bicarbon there. And we’ll suck up about, you know, couple of ounces of that in the nasaline. We’ll mix it up in the- in the solution, then we’ll suck up a couple of ounces, and then we’ll- we’ll inject it in one nostril, then a second or two, a flow coming from the other side where it drains, and then we’ll go to the other side and we’ll push- and I’m not talking the spray, we’re not doing the xylitol spray, we’re actually doing a syringe and nasaline pump, that’s like a big turkey baster, and we’re-

Evan Brand: Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: -we’re injecting fluid up, and it’s literally flowing out of the other nose for 1 to 2 seconds. When I kinda ring out his nose, and then we do the other side, and have it flow for another second or 2, and that’s going all the way up in the frontal cavities, and may even go down the back of the throat. So if you’re having an annoying post nasal drip, that could be something hanging out way in the back posterior part of the sinus cavity that needs to get flushed out. And the xylitol is great ’cause it will kill some bacteria and potentially even some fungus and then just- and also restoring that good pH up there. So it makes it harder for some of the not so nice stuff to grow, it’s very helpful for sinuses in- or for allergies in the sinus cavity.

Evan Brand: That’s beautiful, and does he tolerate that, is he allow you to do that or is it a pain?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, here’s the deal. We used to use the bottle, like the Neal med spray bottle or the- or the uhm netty Xlear bottle, but err- one- if you- if you had it at an angle little bit, it- you wouldn’t get optimal pressure-

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: -so the nasaline allows you to get optimal pressure from any angle ’cause it’s- it’s kind of, you know, in an injection fashion. And then number 2, is you get more flow, you get better pressure. So sometimes with the bottle, there’d be mucus, and we- there wasn’t enough pressure to break it up. So with the nasaline, you can get like 2 to 3 times more pressure, so it breaks it right up and then you can see it fully on the other side and it’s- you get that like sense of like, “Oh my God, that was like way up in your sinus”, and then he can breathe so much better and helps, ’cause, he’s only had one ear infection, and it happened because we couldn’t get snot mucus from up here out. And again, that’ll change as he can blow his nose, right? But when your kids are younger, it helps and if you have sinus issues, it’s awesome too! Totally great. And you may not need the nasaline, you may just be able to do the regular s- you know, regular spray ball that comes with them, but that’s helpful.

Evan Brand: And this is nasaline like N-A-S-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: A-L-I-N-E. If you go to, and click on recommended products, we have the links there, I’ll have my staff put the links below in the comments section, so if you’re listening to the podcast, or the YouTube video later, you can go and look for those links and we’ll have ’em there for y’all.

Evan Brand: Perfect. Well, I think we talked about a bunch. So, are you ready, do you wanna hit some- some nutrients? Things that can help-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, I wish to. One more thing here, I know, I’m- I’m a little long-winded, so we have our 5 major immune, uhm cells, right? 5 major immune cells, we have- in- in school they’ll teach ya, Never Let Monkeys Eat Bananas – Neutrophils, Lymphocytes, Monocytes, Eosinophils, Basophils. Okay. Basophils are the big ones we’re worried about with allergies ’cause basophils, outside of the blood, when they go into the tissue, they turn into mast cells, and mast cells produce histamine, and histamine has that vasodilating kind of mucus forming allergy-like effect. And a lot of the medications like Pepcid ac, these 5H2, 5HT2 blockers is antihistamine meds, lot of times they’re working on that response. So, we’re trying to really get that immune system to relax and to chill out into also not over stimulated with stress, and food and poor diet and lifestyle.

Evan Brand: Yup. I think that is important to bring up mast cells, ’cause, yeah, I mean, when you talk about people with mast cell problems, I mean, they’re allergic to anything. Some of those people have to even travel with uh, EpiPens, because if they have some huge mast cell explosion.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly, yup. Totally. So, I’ll let you go through everything here Evan.

Evan Brand: Yeah, well, I was gonna say which I was calling like a silly yet, I was calling it coricidin, but it’s really quercetin. Justin’s like, “Dude, it’s quercetin”. So, quercetin, uh it just [crosstalk] but anyway, so, this is- this is a bioflavonoid, and this is very helpful to stabilize mast cells. So, actually, uh, Neil Nathan had a good book on mast cells. And he was talking about how- the number 1 thing he found from a natural nutritional perspective to stabilize mast cells, meaning, if you have a mast cell activation problem where someone is just overreacting to everything like they breathe in cologne, and get a headache, that’s likely a mast cell problem that’s creating a lot of excess histamine in dumping that into the system. So in his book, he discussed using quercetin, and how some people can’t even tolerate a low-dose like 40 milligrams was too much for some people, that’s gonna be a very sensitive person. And most of the time, we can go up to 2, 3, 4, 5 hundred milligrams of quercetin, and then usually there’s other uh bioflavonoids like rutin, R-U-T-I-N that come with it. So, that’s what you and I use a lot. And I would say that’s probably 1 of the top 5 nutrients that you can use, but, don’t just go to Walmart and buy some there. You wanna get a professional quality version because, just ’cause it says, it’s “XYZ” on the label, that doesn’t mean it’s the quality in purity and, if it’s garbage and you bought it at Walgreens pharmacy, it could have a bunch of extra fillers, corn and gluten and who knows what else. It could be in a tablet versus a capsule, versus a powder, so then the absorption in the gut is not as good, ’cause you have low stomach acids. So, you can’t just assume because it’s on the label that it’s gonna work for. So I have to give that a little disclaimer.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 100%. Yeah, one thing I wanna highlight, is uhm, reishi mushroom or Ganoderma lucidum is excellent. Rishi is known- I’d one article right here called the suppression of inflammatory and allergic responses by a pharmacologically potent fungus and Ganoderma lucidum or reishi mushroom. And essentially, rishi really helps modulate the immune system but it also helps push up that TH1 immune system. Now, why does that matter? ‘Cause people that may have a lot of allergenic issues, they may have this really high bit of TH2 going on, right? It’s on a see-saw. So it TH2 is high, guess where TH1 sits? So, by- it’s- it’s low, right? Just like with one end of the see-saw, is up, the other end has to be down. So think of the side that’s down is TH1, think of the uhm, which is the side that rishi supports, and think of the allergenic side is over here, on the TH2. So if you bump up this TH1 and guess what you’re doing to that TH2 allergenic immune response? You can kind of bring it back in to benefit.

Evan Brand: Yeah, I’m gonna call on the- I call it rishi, maybe call it rishi [crosstalk]-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So- you- we’re pronouncing quercetin differently, and rishi differently. I love it man. [Crosstalk]

Evan Brand: I love it, I mean, I take it almost every day. There’s a couple different-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh yeah.

Evan Brand: -supplements I take that does have mushrooms in it, so, I- I’m a huge fan and there has been- I mean, they call it the mushroom of immortality, so, I mean, this is something been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years before Americans picked up on it.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. So let me just read you part of the abstract here. I talk about here, “A number of herbal drugs have been identified in the past that can target inflammatory, cytokines among these Ganoderma lucidum aka rishi, a powerful medicinal mushroom has been found to possess immune-modulating and immune potentiating capabilities, and has been characterized as a wonder herb”. And this article right here, I will put- put the link here below, link here below is this review will focus is on the molecular mechanism and the inflammatory and anti-allergenic reaction this mushroom has especially with allergies. So we’ll put the link below you’re not gonna see the whole thing because a lot of these things are stuck behind paywalls but it just- we- you know I’m just putting it out there because I want people to know there’s a lot of research on some of these compounds and how they can help modulate the immune response. Now I haven’t read the whole article because it’s behind a paywall but I’m gonna guess part of that mechanism and how it’s helping allergies is to that t1 th2 seesaw analogy I just gave y’all.

Evan Brand: Yeah I would say the same thing with the astragalus, you know I love astragalus, I think it’s time of the year we’ve already started to see a couple of ticks on our dog so we’re back in two tick season already and if you do get bit supposedly if you get bit, uh by a tick, and you have astragalus in your system, that may help to prevent the transmission of the Borrelia burgdorferi that causes lyme disease. So, I basically stay on astragalus starting in the spring throughout the rest of the year. But I think that would be a good TH1, TH2 balancer as well for allergy season.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. So we wanna make sure we draw line here, right? The line is, these herbs and nutrients can be used palliatively in the same category that drugs- the drugs are, right? But, if we’re actually fixing the root underlying issues that may create the environment for allergies to form like pet danders in house, mold in the house, poor diet, inflammation, low- you know, not enough stomach acid, poor adrenals. If we don’t fix that, then these issues may not have a root cause supporting benefit. So we draw the line, these are nutrients but they can still be used palliatively as well as to support the root cause. So our goal is to always support the root cause, by addressing these issues we already highlighted, but they can also be used uh, without addressing the root cause as well but they’re always way more effective than synergistic when we- when we’re fixing the diet, the lifestyle, stress that are causing everything to dysfunction to begin with. So I like to draw that line, ’cause most people, they use allergy medications today, without any focus on the root cause. We always wanna delineate and draw that clear line for y’all.

Evan Brand: Yeah, I was pulling up a study here that was talking about prenatal, perinatal, and childhood vitamin D exposure, and their association with childhood allergies, and basically, this uh study discusses, they were measuring vitamin D levels, through different ages of kids. And the lower the vitamin D level throughout pregnancy or through childhood, increases risk of allergies later on. So, long story short, if your pregnant mom listening, make sure your vitamin D levels are up, you know, preferably like 60 to 80, uh, we like to see it, it’s typically in the U.S., it’s gonna be NG over DL. That’s gonna be the uh, the unit. But if you look at your reference range, you wanna be on the higher end of your reference range of vitamin D, that’s an easy one to fix.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: A hundred percent, yup. So let’s go to the list here, we mentioned vitamin D, and how that modulates the immune system. We talked about medicinal mushrooms, Ganoderma lucum- lucidum or rishi is our favorite herb. If we’re Evan, it’s- how do you say it?

Evan Brand: I say rishi.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Rishi, rishi, potato, patata. Probiotics, quercetin is excellent especially with a lot of the- the bioflavonoids, I think you mentioned the histidine, the rutin. Uh, bromelain, which is an enzyme found on pineapple which is great for helping with allergies, stinging nettle is an excellent one. In my line, I’ve a product called aller clear which has a lot of these compounds in it, it has a stinging nettle, it has some of the vitamins C, the bioflavonoid, it has some potassium bicarbonate, these are really good kind of, I say first line natural medicine, functional medicine type of compounds. Anything you wanna add to that Evan?

Evan Brand: Yeah, I would just say make sure you’re working back towards the root cause, so, someone can go buy those supplements, great job, but still make sure you’re looking at your gut, make sure you’re looking at your home environment, do you have new carpet that’s off-gassing toxic chemicals, do you have new paint, did you move into a new apartment, a new condo, a new town home that has all their pollutants in the air that are messing up your sleep at night. So maybe you need to have a high-quality air purifier in your bedroom while you’re sleeping, maybe that’s gonna reduce the stress in your bucket, but you can still do these other things. Just make sure you’re- you’re checking everything else off the list, I don’t want people just taking quercetin and thinking they- they’re gonna be cured.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly, 100%. Alright, so let’s continue to roll through some of our other things on our list here. My list, let me pull back up here. Alright, good. So we talked about the medicinal mushrooms, really-really important, we talked about the stinging metal. Uhm, couple other things I wanna highlight, is just poor breathing. A lot of people could have like a deviated septum, and that could require surgery. Some people, it may be more functional based where you can do a specific chiropractic technique called nasal-specific, where they can go up there, and they could put a balloon up and they can- they can kind of balance out those little bones that could be misaligned. So I always recommend the nasal specific chiropractic technique first because that’s- doesn’t require anesthesia, medications, or invasive surgery. So, that’s always better first. And then just making sure you have good posture, right? Making sure your external auditory meatus sits right above your top of your shoulder there, good posture, and then making sure you- the- bones in your neck are moving properly. Soon as you start to go forward head posture, one of the things that starts to happen is your airway starts to close down a bit, okay? The more your airway starts to close down, you start recruiting as you start going more forward, you start recruiting from these intercostal muscles to breathe. So now you’re here, and your breathing from this- your chest muscles, right? So we take a deep breath, if you put a hand on your tummy, and a hand on your chest, you want the bottom hand to be the one primarily moving your chest shouldn’t be. So, you should- when you breathe, [inhales], by chest breath, this is the hand that moves first. No go. If we’re belly breathing/diaphragmatic breathing, [inhales], this is the one that you should be breathing with. A lot of people, they don’t naturally wanna do that ’cause it- make sure tummy look a little bit bigger and everyone wants to have those- that- that beach body. So you see guys walking around like this, that means they’re automatically breathing through their chest which is activating that sympathetic nervous system response, which then will throw off the immune system too if it’s done chronically.

Evan Brand: Yeah, for people who are listening audio, they didn’t see Justin, he was showing the kind a turtle head basically when you’re standing and, if everybody is looking down at their smartphones these days, everybody has that kind of turtle head, head launch forward kinda down and forward, he was saying, that’s gonna be recruiting some of those muscles there in the front of your neck and then he was kind of hunch over at the same time at his shoulders. So he was showing what you want. ‘Cause you wanna be basically your head, you want on top of your shoulders, you don’t want your head in front of your shoulders, he’s saying that’s what’s leading to the more chest breathing, and not the belly breathing. So that’s important, I mean, I’ve noticed, just watching my daughter, that, you know, young children, they’re naturally belly breathers. And as we age and become stressed, we become chest breathers. And chest breathing causes anxiety. You don’t wanna be a chest breather. If you look at somebody having the panic attack, they’re not breathing in their belly, their breathing in their chest.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah. I think a lot of people, number 1, they- they don’t wanna look like they’re 5 or 6 months pregnant ’cause they’d really do a deep belly breath. You know, basically, all your organs, all your intestines are going down as your diaphragm is pushing out. Then- and so, make sure you should look a little bit bigger in the tummy but it’s just, you know, it’s just your body trying to get a- a good diaphragmatic breathing, it’s just moving those organs around, that’s all.

Evan Brand: Yeah, who cares? You gotta- you still care what people think, then, you gotta get over that first.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Absolutely. Alright, anything else you wanna add on the breathing postural side?

Evan Brand: I think you did good.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Okay, cool. Now we already talked about, you know, what these various things could be, right? Pollen, danders, animal dust, mites, right? Uh, things in your fur, right, these kind of things, you know, could be topical things like latex or eating gluten, or anaphylactic things like peanuts, of course, right? And a good air filter will help with some of these ones that are more environmentally based. Now, I- I have one,, there’s a good one there that I like. There’s 2 or 3 brands that I like as well. If you go to, you’ll see couple the ones that I like and then I personally have about all 3 in my house. I know Evan talked about the uhm, uh, what was the one that you have Evan?

Evan Brand: The molekule?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: The molekule, and I have the molekule as well. Molekule I think is great. One thing I like about the molekule, it’s- looks nice, doesn’t it?

Evan Brand: It does look good. Yeah, I don’t know if you- I don’t know if you have a coupon code. Do you have a coupon for people ’cause if you don’t, I do.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Good. Why don’t you put your- let’s do this. If you’re listening here, Evan will put all the- the links and stuff below, if you’re listening to his, and then vice versa for mine. So we’ll put that in the show notes here too.

Evan Brand: Okay. We can save you lot of money. Air purifiers are not the cheapest thing in the world, but they are priceless, I mean, it’s one thing that I would not live in a house, eat, no matter how clean the building materials, I would not live in a house without air purification because-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 100%.

Evan Brand: -it’s just- it’s too important especially if you got your kids like Justin and I do.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yup. Sup- super important. So now, we talked about some of the- you know, the causes there, we talked about the biochemistry and the physiology, we talked about some of the conventional things, right? It’s gonna be potential antibiotics, it’s gonna be antihistamines, it’s gonna be uh, immune suppressants, it could even be corticosteroids, or even prednisone if it’s really high, could even be to that degree. [crosstalk]

Evan Brand: Your ENT is not gonna discuss gluten, they’re likely not gonna discuss dairy. I’m sure there’s some out there that may but there probably few and far between. I’m guessing the guy right down the street’s probably not gonna say that to you. And it’s unfortunate, hopefully with podcasts like this, we can turn the tide around. And when you go into an ENT, the first thing you’re gonna say is, what’s your diet, do you eat dairy, uh how often do you eat grains, how much sleep do you have, uhm, do you have brand new carpet that’s off gassing formaldehyde, uh, do you have an air purifier in your bedroom, like, err- you know, hopefully the ENT visits will start to become like this.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Exactly. And it’s really hard to do that in the conventional insurance model for sure. [crosstalk]

Evan Brand: …6 minutes or something for an appointment?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know, totally. And we talked about some of the natural compounds that we use, the quercetin, uhm, HCl, or some kind of acidifying agent like apple cider vinegar. We also like a lot of the beneficial probiotics which may be depending upon how sensitive you are as well. And we already talked about- one of the things I like is kidney glandular. Kidney glandular or kidney tissue has an enzyme called DAO, which actually helps metabolize histamine. So, that’s really good. We may do higher dose kidney glandular, get the DAO which will come in there and metabolize the histamine. If you’re sensitive, you may even talk about cutting histamines out, could be citrus, it could be grains, it could be aged meats like Evan talked about, it could even be teasing coffee as well ’cause those- those block the DAO enzyme from working. And we may just add in extra DAO enzyme to help metabolize the histamine as well.

Evan Brand: Yeah. I find low histamine diet help some people but once again, it’s gonna be and maybe the 10% or less-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yup. Hmm-hmm, for sure. Yup. And that’s the thing, when we deal with patients through a functional medicine, you know, we have a lot of experience. So there’s a spectrum in which more patients fall than others, and it’s hard ’cause when people find stuff online, they don’t really have a contact to where they may fit into that category ’cause there an N equals 1. So it’s really important, we wanna plug it in based on our clinical experience which gets us a huge head start.

Evan Brand: Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, I think we hit everything really good. I think we did really concise job, I think probably one of the more pod- the more concise podcast that’s out there on these topics. ‘Cause we want to make sure you understand the root biochemistry and understand the physiology. That way, you understand concepts, you’re not memorizing random facts.

Evan Brand: Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Root cause information to stick.

Evan Brand: One last story and then we’ll wrap it up. So, I’ve had a major issue with histamine regarding avocados, I was eating avocados like every day, I start to get migraine and headaches from avocados, so I cut them out for 6 weeks while I was working on a gut protocol, and as soon as I fixed my gut, I added avocados back in, and I had no problem.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yup.

Evan Brand: So, go to the nutritionist, then they’ll tell you, “Well, Justin, or Evan, it’s this food, it’s that food. These are the devil. Don’t ever eat avocado”. No, that wasn’t the root cause, the avocado wasn’t the problem, it was my body, I had too many gut infections and other problems creating excess histamine. The avocado just put me over the edge and caused the symptom. So I temporarily removed it, fixed the root cause and then I could add it back in and had no problems. So, you know, these people, they get stuck on a diet because they just went to a nutritionist who put them on like a low histamine diet, but then there’s no other follow-up, there’s nothing after that. It’s just here’s this very restrictive diet, you’re stuck with this forever, the end. And that’s not the way it should be.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: 100%. Well, hey man, today was a great podcast, if you guys are enjoying it, we’re- we got it on Facebook as well, make sure you subscribe, hit the bell as well. Put comments below, wanna know what you think, wanna get some really good future podcasts ideas from y’all, and I’ll be back personally from my live YouTube Q&A’s later this week, so make sure you’re part of my channel, so you can access that phenomenal content, and make sure you head over to Evan sees patients all over the country as well, he has lots of phenomenal content even outside of the ones that Evan and I produced together. So make sure you subscribe to Evan’s podcast and YouTube channel as well. Evan, anything else you wanna say?

Evan Brand: Thanks for the plug man, and uh, check out justinhealth- justin, and then health,, that’s where you could reach out to him if you wanna do consults, and he has another doc on staff too. So if his availability is crazy, you need to be seen, we can get you in. So, just check out the site, you can find all the resources there.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And I look forward to having my book come out, and my thyroid masterclass comin’ out really soon. It’s so hard ’cause my first love to seeing patients and I have to kinda clear my schedule from some- for some patients during certain blocks to get this content out. So, I’m in this little pickle here, just try to finish it up, but it- it’s hard ’cause my first love is seeing patients. So, uhm, doing my best ya’ll, so keep an eye out for the thyroid reset book that’s coming your way along with the masterclass.

Evan Brand: Good job. Keep up the good work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Hey, thanks Evan, you have a great day. We’ll talk soon everyone.

Evan Brand: Take care.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Bye now.

Evan Brand: Bye.


The Suppression of Inflammatory and Allergic Responses by a Pharmacologically Potent Fungus and Ganoderma Lucidum or Reishi Mushroom

Mast Cell Activation by Neil Nathan

Xlear Rescue Nasal Spray with Xylitol

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