What Is ‘Reactivity? And Is It A Life Sentence?


Reactivity means, simply, that your body reacts to many things. This can be anything – foods, chemicals in the environment, criticism, emotions, pain. If you’re a reactive person, you feel everything strongly. Your system over-reacts to everything. (Feeling things strongly is not necessarily a bad thing, but reacting to everyday things can be really difficult.) Signs and symptoms cover every body system, but primarily skin, lungs, nose and eyes, nervous system (mood and headaches) and gut.

So, how do we quieten these reactions and make life easier on the reactive person? Well, there are many ways a natural health professional can help.

To begin with, reducing your exposure to the things you’re reacting to can alleviate symptoms and can make you feel better quickly. This is not always easy – there are many ways a person can react – via the immune system, or the nervous system, and via true allergy or intolerance. But via a range of tests – both conventional and controversial – it is possible to find out what you react to and remove it from your diet and environment. (Don’t forget the chemicals in your everyday products!)

Once we’ve eliminated the things you’re reacting to, how do we treat this reactivity long-term? Is it even possible to become less reactive?

Short answer, yes it is possible to reduce reactivity. We can treat your gut health for a start – have you heard the old adage made new – all illness begins in the gut? Leaky gut is a symptom and cause of intolerance reactions, so treating it with the right nutrients, enzymes and specific probiotics is a first step. But it doesn’t end with the gut.

Then we need to quieten your overactive immune system, and stop it reacting to everyday things. There are targeted nutrients which do this, acting on immune cells and reducing their trigger happy nature.

And throughout this process, we need to decrease inflammation. This can be tricky when a lot of elimination diets are not nutritionally sound or anti-inflammatory. So there’s a balance between getting what your body needs to heal, and eliminating anything that may be causing a reaction.

And that’s not all. There are other underlying conditions and deficiencies that can cause a higher level of reactivity. Heavy metal toxicity can build up over time, especially in those with metabolic errors and disorders such as Pyrroles. Hormone imbalances are another condition that can exhibit a range of systemic complaints. Stress and sleep are crucial areas to get right, too, as they are essential to your recovery and resetting your system.

So if you, or someone you love, is highly reactive – it’s not a life sentence. It’s possible to find the underlying causes and treat the body to decrease reactivity. It’s possible to live a less reactive life, and a happier one. If you’re ready and prepared to do the work… and if you believe you’re worth it. Talk to your natural healthcare professional, or contact me, Kate at kate@ktsnutrition.com or to book a nutrition appointment, call 94824877.

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