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  • The prevalence of allergies around the nation

    Most people around the nation have felt the effects of allergies, whether they be environmental or food related. CNN Health analysts recently broke down allergies by the numbers to show just how severe this common problem is. 

    According to the news outlet, in total, one in five Americans has either allergies or asthma, although the types of allergies they have can differ. For example, approximately 7 percent of all people with allergies face skin issues, while 6 percent of people with allergies develop side effects due to consuming certain foods. The majority of allergy patients (80 percent) are inflicted with respiratory problems from asthma or environmental triggers like ragweed.

    The most common food allergies include milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts and fish, while skin issues tend to arise from certain fragrances, antibiotics, cosmetics or jewelry materials. Environmental-related allergies typically come from trees, grass and weed pollen, mold spores, dust mites and animal dander, the news outlet found. 

    Not only do these issues cause problems like runny noses, itchy eyes and trouble breathing, they also cost a lot of money to treat. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, treating allergies, including doctors visits and medications, costs Americans a total of nearly $14.5 billion a year. Families can help keep allergy triggers out of the home by investing in professional-grade air purifiers like the IQAir HealthPro Plus

  • Parents' saliva may protect babies from allergies

    Most parents will do anything to keep their children healthy, though advice from a new study might come as a bit of a shock to new moms and dads. Scientists from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden recently published work in the journal Pediatrics stating that parents might be able to help their babies avoid getting eczema and asthma by cleaning off their pacifiers with their mouths. 

    Researchers tested this idea by recruiting 184 Swedish parents and their babies. During trials, half of the group cleaned their infants' pacifiers off with their mouths, while the second group washed them off with water. From the data, scientists found babies in the saliva group were "significantly less likely" to develop either eczema or asthma than their peers whose pacifiers were cleaned with water.

    Bill Hesselmar, lead author of the study, told NPR the benefits may lie in the microbiome, or bacteria that live in the parents' bodies, since their bacteria may be able to change that of their babies.

    "We think that these bacteria ... stimulate the immune system," Hesselmar told the radio station.

    According to the American Lung Association, more than 7 million kids under the age of 18 are already afflicted with asthma. Even though parents might not be able to help them avoid the issue now, they can help them cope better with the condition by investing in a medical-grade air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus for the home.

  • Oral drops curb allergy, asthma effects in children

    It's no secret that allergies and asthma are two of the most common conditions people of all ages face.  However, helping youngsters find relief is growing even more important since in 2010, approximately 10 percent of all children under the age of 17 experienced some allergy symptoms. 

    Allergy shots have become more popular in recent years to help curb the side effects of seasonal allergies and asthma. Despite the benefits, a new review in the journal Pediatrics, found allergy-relief oral drops could be just as effective, without the pain.

    Researchers from the Johns Hopkins Children's Center discovered the results after reviewing a total of 13 studies involving more than 900 children who all had either the allergy shot, standard allergy medication or a placebo. They then cross-referenced these results with another 18 trials involving more than 1,500 kids who had either oral drops, a placebo or standard asthma medication. Overall, the scientists found the shots worked better than the other methods in relieving allergy symptoms, while the oral drops helped provide more relief from allergies and asthma in comparison to placebos or standard medication. 

    Though more trials need to be conducted to verify these results, parents might want to discuss oral drops with their child's doctor if he or she is dealing with allergies or asthma. Parents could also install a professional-grade air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus to ensure kids breathe easy at home. 

  • Foods that fight allergy symptoms

    Allergy season is in full swing around most of the nation and for the more than 50 million Americas who suffer from some form of allergy, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, it might be time to consider new ways to beat the symptoms. NBC affiliate WRCB recently spoke with Pamela Kelle, a food coach and registered dietitian, to discuss how food can play a role in keeping allergy side effects at bay. 

    According to Kelle, consuming ample amounts of fresh produce is key in preventing inflammation and other issues caused by allergies. Berries and apples as well as leafy vegetables are the best options overall. 

    "The property in the skin of the apple helps the body stop the histamines from causing inflammation factors," Kelle told the news outlet, adding fruits high in vitamin C are also beneficial. "That's going to be a lot of our fruit, blueberries, strawberries, things that have a lot of color, the brightest ones to help."

    When it comes to allergy triggers, Kelle reports bananas and red peppers are among the biggest culprits, so those already starting to sneeze or cough due to allergies might want to stop eating these foods until the season has passed.

    Even though eating certain foods could help curb allergy side effects, installing a medical-grade air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus could help even more. 

  • Using grocery delivery services is better for the environment

    Though grocery delivery services like Peapod by Stop & Shop have been around for years, some people might assume it's a waste of money and time to use such options. However, a new study conducted by scientists from the University of Washington found that using such services might be more eco-friendly. 

    To test this theory, researchers looked at delivery services versus traditional shopping in the Seattle area. From the collected data they discovered that, on average, delivery trucks produce 20 to 75 percent less carbon dioxide than what drivers would emit going shopping on their own. Erica Wygonik, co-author of the study, believes the pros far outweigh the cons when it comes to the environmental benefits delivery services provide. 

    "What's good for the bottom line of the delivery service provider is generally going to be good for the environment, because fuel is such a big contributor to operating costs and greenhouse gas emissions," said Wygonik. "Saving fuel saves money, which also saves on emissions."

    Air pollution is a serious problem around the nation. The Environmental Protection Agency reports prolonged exposure to such toxins can cause people to develop serious medical conditions such as cancer, respiratory problems or even fertility issues.  

    Switching to a grocery delivery service might be one way to cut your family's emissions rate, while installing a medical-grade air purifier like the IQAir GC MultiGas can also ensure everyone breathes clean air at home. 

  • Air Pollution: Not just an urban problem

    Most Americans have heard of air pollution, but might not think the issue affects them, especially if they live in quiet, suburban areas. Despite this feeling of safety, a new study conducting by members of the California Environmental Protection Agency found air pollution can strike anywhere, according to the Los Angeles Times.

    According to the report, scientists used an environmental health screen tool called CalEnviroScreen to evaluate how polluted certain areas of Southern California were. The collected data found the three highest air polluted town were all in the San Joaquin Valley, specifically, Fresno, Bakersfield and Stockton.

    "Some people expected most of these ZIP codes to be in industrial, urban areas," Sam Delson, a spokesman for California's Environmental Protection Agency, told the news outlet. "It was surprising to some that while many were in urban areas, a lot of them were in agricultural areas."

    The Clean Air Act reports the U.S. deals with six major air pollutants: carbon monoxide, ground-level ozone, lead, nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter and sulfur dioxide, though there are many secondary issues as well. 

    Families interested in keeping air pollution out of their homes can invest in medical-grade air purifiers like the IQAir GC MultiGas to breathe easy indoors. 

  • Allergies and asthma could be linked

    Approximately one in 12 (25 million) people in the U.S. have asthma, and this number is predicted to increase annually, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. Though inhalers and investing in air purifiers like the IQAir HealthPro Plus can help keep asthma symptoms at bay, treating patients for allergies as well might be an important step.

    This is because a new study published in the April edition of Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology shows that people with asthma also tend to have allergies. Researchers came to this conclusion after reviewing results of a National Health and Nutrition Survey completed by more than 2,500 adults. 

    From the data, scientists from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) found that a shocking 75 percent of asthma patients between the ages of 20 and 40, and 65 percent of participants with asthma aged 55 or older, were all also inflicted with at least one type of allergy. Researchers have yet to figure out what or if there is a link between asthma and allergies, though they're looking into the various issues that could be to blame. 

    "It could be one of many creating this perfect storm for allergies," said Dr. Richard Weber, president of the ACAAI. "Other factors, such as the hygiene hypothesis, climate change and an increase in awareness and education can also be reasons for this growth."

  • California national park affected by air pollution

    Most people head to national parks around the country to take in the wonders of nature and enjoy breathing in plenty of fresh air. However, clean air is one aspect of visiting a park that is being challenged at Devils Postpile National Monument in California.

    According to a recent study published in the journal Atmospheric Environment, research shows air pollution from forest fires as well as nearby industrial plants and vehicle emissions have lowered the air quality at the national monument. 

    "These findings are important for Sierra Nevada air and land managers and indicate that even at remote eastern Sierra locations, ozone air pollution may be a problem for human and ecosystem health," said Dr. Andrzej Bytnerowicz, the study's lead author. "Due to these potential risks, there is a need for long-term ozone monitoring in the Sierra Nevada in general, but especially in the areas with high local population and many summer recreational visitors."

    This study, along with other information gathered by the American Lung Association, shows more needs to be done to help lower air pollution levels stateside. According to the American Lung Association, nearly 50 million Americans live in counties with frequent spikes in particle pollution levels. 

    Families can keep such air pollution out of their homes by investing in an air purifier like the IQAir GC MultiGas.

  • Alternative ways to cope with allergies

    Spring allergies come with some of the most annoying side effects. According to The Associated Press, allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever, can result in symptoms like sneezing, a stuffy nose, a runny nose, watery or itchy eyes and itching on the roof of a sufferer's mouth. Many people around the U.S. with allergies opt to take medicine to help curb the symptoms, but there are actually other ways to ease side effects as well.

    According to The Boston Globe, exercising could be beneficial in the fight against allergies. Working out will not only get people in shape for summer, it also helps boost their immune systems, thus making it easier for the body to ward off allergy symptoms. 

    Getting acupuncture is another alternative way to combat allergy symptoms. A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that patients gained some relief after undergoing 12 treatments over the course of eight weeks. Other options like using dripless nasal sprays have also been found to keep allergies at bay. 

    Those who have tried both traditional and non-traditional ways to curb allergy symptoms with no luck might want to invest in a medical-grade air purifier like the IQAir HealthPro Plus to breathe easy at home. 

  • Extended exposure to traffic pollution tied to heart disease

    Sitting in traffic is not only a nuisance for drivers around the nation, it can also lead to complications with their health. Air pollution caused by car emissions and chemical plants can up a person's chances of developing respiratory conditions and more, the World Health Organization reports. 

    A new study conducted by scientists from the West-German Heart Center discovered a link between fine particle matter (PM), in part caused by air pollution, and a higher risk of developing heart disease.

    Researchers came to this conclusion after reviewing data involving more than 4,800 participants with an average age of 60 at the start of the study. During trials, scientists calculated how close seniors lived to high-traffic roads, while their long-term exposure to PM was addressed by using a chemistry transport model. 

    The data found that for every increase in PM, and how close participants lived to high traffic roads, patients chances of developing heart disease increased. 

    Since it's well known that air pollution is negative to one's health and new information further proves this point, it might be smart for families living near busy roads to invest in professional-grade air purifiers like the IQAir GC MultiGas to ward off potential health problems.

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