What Do Allergies Do To Your Insides?

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , /

Hey there and welcome to Life Noggin. When you picture allergies, you may imagine
someone sneezing, coughing, and itching on a beautiful spring day. Or perhaps you think of someone accidentally
eating peanuts or shellfish and going into anaphylactic shock. Whatever the case may be, allergies are a
serious problem for many millions of people. But how and why do they develop? And what’s so different between allergies
to pollen or dust and allergies to bee stings or soy? Well, let’s start with what these different
types of allergies have in common: your immune system. When an allergen makes contact with a surface
on or in your body, nearby immune cells act quickly to destroy the allergen. The cell then covers itself in broken pieces
of the allergen and moves to a site of some lymph tissue. When it gets there, it passes pieces of the
allergen onto even more immune cells, so that they can work together to form an antibody
called immunoglobulin E. If the body comes into contact with the allergen
again, these antibodies—which are proteins designed to attach to foreign substances and
remove them from your body—will start a reaction to fight against it. First they activate a part of the immune system
called a mast cell, which then expels a lot of chemicals, like histamines. When histamines are released, they make your
capillaries—the smallest blood vessels in your body—more permeable, which allows white
blood cells to enter the capillaries and fight the allergens. However, increased permeability doesn’t
just let white blood cells in. It also lets fluids out, causing the watery
eyes and runny nose that you know and love. And similarly, a congested nose is caused
by the capillaries growing larger due to the increased permeability. So that covers how you get allergies. But what about why? Why would your body turn against itself like
that? And why are some allergies just annoying while
others are deadly? For many years the prevailing idea was that
the immune system perceived allergens as being similar to parasitic worms, and for that reason
it would unleash the same attack on a peanut as it would on a tapeworm. Parasitic worms are a serious threat, but
they are less prevalent than they were in the lives of our ancestors, which explains
why Immunoglobulin E would choose to attack allergens in the absence of worms. A similar theory says that allergens may have
posed a real threat to us many years ago. According to Dr. Kate Welch, a specialist
in immunology and allergies, it’s possible that our ancestors were in serious danger
when they encountered something like pollen. Therefore, our immune systems are kicked into
gear when they make contact with these allergens, even though we evolved and pollen isn’t
a big threat anymore. Welch claims that it’s even possible that
allergic reactions are important because they may warn us to get out of a dangerous area,
say, directly under a wasp nest. Finally, another theory has come to light
recently, and it claims that allergens are actually more dangerous than we might have
known. Researchers Ruslan Medzhitov, Noah Palm, and
Rachel Rosenstein are at the forefront of allergy research, and they’ve embraced the
new theory. They conducted a study in which they injected
mice with an allergen found in bee venom called PLA2, which rips cell membranes apart. They found that immunoglobulin E didn’t
react to the PLA2—until it started hurting cells. So when you cough or your nose runs, this
study suggests that it’s just because your immune system is trying to get dangerous allergens
out of your body! And when it comes to life-threatening allergies,
they’re simply a more overactive version of the same response. So don’t let your sneezing bother you too
much! Your immune system is doing you a big favor. Make sure to come back every Monday for a
brand new video. As always, my name is Blocko and this has
been Life Noggin. Don’t forget to keep on thinking!

100 thoughts on “What Do Allergies Do To Your Insides?

  1. HEY THERE! Welcome to sneezes 5 times Life Noggin! Do you have any allergies? Let me know sneezes 5 more times down below! Love science AND video games? Check out our other channel Play Noggin! Find out what the Splatoon ink is really made of: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOVbs-CUgGA

  2. im not allergic to anything I know about but I have a question can someone be allergic to nothing?

  3. Yesterday I had a terrible reaction from pollen, I was sneezing, coughing, runny nose, watery eyes, and horrible feelings. It lasted for the whole day I wanted to play with my grandpa but every time I have to run into the bathroom and clean my nose. I took some pills like echinacea, honey medicine, all that with some water, the horrible allergies that just ruined my day. but today I feel a lot better! 😀

  4. I am allergic to Artifital yellow. I am also allergic to mayonnaise, grass, birch trees and my worse, dandelions!

  5. I went through army basic training during the winter, and went through the cold, mud, and rain. Most of the time all at once, and didn’t get sick at all while everyone else got ammonia and bronchitis. My allergies however, kicked me down the entire time. Literally just drowning in my own fluid. The worst, and I could not get over it. No matter how strong my immune system was, allergies were always there, and will always still be there.

  6. I don't think of those things I think of my dam sister when her hand goes as big as a balloon in the cold
    I hate life
    But I can't cause I've got nothing wrong with me- wait no I suffer with my ears
    Dam it I can't win yeah I'm not allergic to anything

  7. Nope. Don’t got any allergies like when I accidentally eat all the cheese of pizza.

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  9. i have an allergy to a medicine that i kinda needed for my A D H D but i found a replacement so i’m fine 🙂

  10. I'm allergic to marshmallows. It makes me toothache on the right most tooth and the left most tooth.

  11. I say I'm allergic to outside, but that's an exaggeration. In reality, I'm allergic to all kinds of pollen, trees, cotton wood, freshly cut grass, dead grass, and hay. And they are pretty common allergies, but if like a peice of cotton wood fluff goes past me, I have to stop whatever I'm doing because I break out sneezing and my eyes get extremely itchy.

    EDIT : I'm also allergic to aluminium. But only get a reaction if I get cut/scraped by it

  12. Im allergic to a bunch if things but theyre just small allergies but i have a big allergic reaction to DUST… but lucky me it only makes me sneeze a lot and its not dangerous.

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