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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Hay Fever

What is hay fever?

Hay fever (allergic rhinitis) is your body’s response to an allergen, such as pollen, dust or mold. Symptoms of hay fever include a runny nose, congestion, sneezing, watery eyes, itching, and coughing. Though symptoms of hay fever are similar to those of a common cold, hay fever symptoms usually last for longer periods of time or appear only after exposure to a specific allergen.

If you have hay fever, your body interprets an allergen that it is exposed to, such as pollen, as a foreign intruder and mounts an immune response. In essence, it is as if your body is fighting the allergen as if it were a bacterial or viral infection, which results in the symptoms of a cold.

The most common types of allergens responsible for hay fever include tree pollens, grass, ragweed, and mold. Your symptoms may change when the amount and type of allergens change, depending on the time of year, your location, and the weather. Various media outlets in your area may publish daily levels of common allergens like tree pollen or grass pollen, which may help you cope with hay fever.

Though inconvenient and sometimes uncomfortable, hay fever is usually not a life-threatening or severe medical condition. For many people, effective treatment includes avoiding the allergens that trigger the body’s immune response and taking prescription antihistamines, decongestants, or steroids. In severe cases, allergy injections may be required.

What are the symptoms of hay fever?

The symptoms of hay fever include congestion, itchy and watery eyes, and other symptoms similar to those of a common cold. The symptoms you experience immediately after exposure to an allergen may differ from symptoms you experience the next time you are exposed to that allergen or after chronic exposure to an allergen.

Runny nose and nasal congestion
Watery or itchy eyes
Itchy nose, roof of mouth or throat
Sinus pressure and facial pain
Swollen, blue-colored skin under the eyes (allergic shiners)
Decreased sense of smell or taste

Your hay fever symptoms may start or worsen at a particular time of year, triggered by tree pollen, grasses or weeds, which all bloom at different times. If you're sensitive to indoor allergens, such as dust mites, cockroaches, mold or pet dander, you may have year-round symptoms. Many people have allergy symptoms all year long, but their symptoms get worse during certain times of the year.

Those of us with allergies especially sever understand that no day is ever the same. Feeling good on a regular basis is what we strive for but the possibility is very slim.

Now for an allergy free recipe I hope you will enjoy.

Rosemary-Lemon Roast Beef

The secret to making this flavorful roast is to cut slits in the surface and fill them with the garlic-herb mixture so that the taste penetrates the meat. Because the recipe serves 12, it makes a wonderful party dish.

1/4 cup fresh rosemary, minced, or 11/2 tablespoon dried rosemary, crumbled
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
41/4 pounds beef sirloin tip or top round roast, tied
1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Preheat the oven to 350'F Line a roasting pan with aluminum foil. In a small bowl, mix the rosemary, garlic, lemon rind, and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper. Using a narrow sharp knife, make 12 slits, each 3/4 inch long and 1 inch deep, across the top of the roast. Use a chopstick to widen the slits and then to push a rounded 1/4 of the garlic-herb mixture into each one. Sprinkle the roast with any remaining mixture, the salt, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.

2. Place the roast on a rack in the roasting pan and roast for 1 hour 20 minutes for medium-rare or until a meat thermometer registers 140'F for medium, roast 11/2 hours or to 160'F Let stand for 15 minutes before carving. Serve with baked sweet potatoes and steamed green beans. Serves 12.

Preparation time: 15 min. Cooking time 1HR.20MIN Standing time 15 min

Per serving calories 268: Saturated fat 2g
Total fat 16g: Protein 47g. Carbohydrates 0g;
Fiber 0g; Sodium 156mg; Cholesterol 230mg

I hope you enjoy this recipe and we'll see you next time on Life Around The Allergies.

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