OK, this is weird. Julie woke up this morning and had a massive allergy attack, which is different for her than it is for me. With me, I can feel some histamine-related swelling, but mostly it makes me feel really fatigued and run down. With her, it’s full on sneezing, snotting, the whole histy megillah. She felt so awful she had to leave church to go find medicine. She and I both took four-hour naps this afternoon. I don’t think either of us have ever slept for so long on an afternoon, absent having the flu.
A church friend said he thinks we have mold in our apartment, even though it’s new construction. When Julie related that to me, I told her I had a clear and strong reaction to cut grass in the neighborhood. She said if there is mold, maybe it’s making my immune system weak, and vulnerable to other allergens. Well, I guess. I have an autoimmune disorder called Raynaud’s syndrome, which might play some role.
Anyway, here’s what I wanted to tell you, and ask if you have any idea what this could mean. Julie had to run errands tonight, and when she returned, I was in the kitchen cooking hamburgers for the little kids, who aren’t observing the Apostles Fast. Our priest today advised Julie to modify her fast for this or that reason, so she decided to have a hamburger patty. Two minutes after she began eating it, her nasal passages opened up, and she felt much better.
“This is one of the strangest things that’s ever happened to me,” she said, astonished. You could hear how much better she was.
What could have happened to have caused that reaction? There was nothing added to the meat, except salt. It was ground beef from Whole Foods.
The relief lasted from 45 minutes to an hour, then Julie was back where she started. Still, it was something else to see how quickly a plain hamburger relieved serious allergy symptoms. Why?
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About Rod Dreher
Rod Dreher is director of publications at the John Templeton Foundation, a philanthropy that focuses on science, religion, economics and morality. A journalist with over 20 years of experience, Dreher has written for The Dallas Morning News, the New York Post, and other newspapers and journals. He is author of the book "Crunchy Cons." Archives of his previous Beliefnet blog, "Crunchy Con," can be found here. He and his family live in Philadelphia.