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花粉症は腸内環境を整えると改善する!腸をキレイにする3つの方法

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花粉症はアレルギーの一種であり、免疫の異常反応によって症状が出てしまうものです。この免疫を正常に近づけるために、近年、腸内環境を整えることが有効であるということがわかってきました。体内にある最大の免疫機能を持つのが腸であり、腸内環境を整えることで、免疫を整えることにつながるというわけです。花粉症の対策には、自覚症状である鼻づまりや目のかゆみの方へアプローチを行うことが多いかもしれませんが、免疫を整えることに注目してみてはいかがでしょうか。花粉症と腸内環境の関係や、腸内環境を整えるための方法をご紹介します。

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花粉症と腸内環境のすごい関係とは

人体模型

花粉症が起こりやすい人は、アトピー性皮膚炎やその他食品アレルギーなどがある人が多いようです。花粉症もアレルギーの一種であり、体内の免疫異常によって起こります。体内の免疫細胞の6~7割が腸にあると言われており、腸内環境が悪くなると免疫細胞に異常が起こりやすくなるというわけです。こうしたアレルギーを持つ人は、便秘や下痢などが起こりやすいことも多く、それだけで腸内環境の悪さがわかる場合もあります。

腸内環境に大きく影響する「腸内細菌」

免疫を正常に整えるためには、腸内環境を良くする必要があります。この腸内環境とは、「腸内細菌」のバランスのことでもあります。腸内細菌には、善玉菌、悪玉菌、日和見菌の3種類があります。そのバランスは、善玉菌が2割、悪玉菌が1割、残りの7割は日和見菌というのが理想的です。しかし、ストレスや胃腸に負担のかかる食事が続くことで、悪玉菌が活発化し、日和見菌が悪玉に変わってしまうことでバランスが崩れてしまいます。善玉菌に良い生活習慣に変えることで、日和見菌が善玉の味方となり、バランスが整ってきます。悪玉菌を増やしやすい現代人の生活習慣を見直してみましょう。

花粉症改善のために、腸内環境を整える3つの方法

花粉症の改善には、免疫の正常化が根本治療となります。腸内細菌のバランスを整え、腸内環境をキレイにするための3つの方法があります。

その1:善玉菌を増やそう

腸内環境が悪いということは、悪玉菌が多いということでもあります。花粉症だけでなく、ガスが臭い、便秘や下痢が多い、便は出るけど形状がコロコロやべちゃべちゃ…という人は、悪玉菌が多い腸内環境という証拠です。善玉菌を元気にして、日和見菌を味方につけるためにお勧めなのが、「食物繊維と乳酸菌を摂ること」です。

水溶性の食物繊維は、すでに腸内にいる善玉菌のエサとなります。ゴボウやにんじんなどの根菜類に多く含まれます。また、乳酸菌を摂ることで、外から善玉菌を増やしましょう。乳酸菌といえばヨーグルトが代表的ですが、キムチや漬物類にも多く含まれます。また、一時流行した塩麹も麹菌の中に乳酸菌が含まれており、お勧めの食材です。

その2:腸揉みをしよう

腸内環境が悪い人の中には、お腹がガチガチに固くなっている人がいます。これは、ストレスなどの過緊張などによって、お腹の筋肉がちぢんでしまっている状態です。こうなると、善玉菌がいても腸が動いてくれません。腸が動かないと排便がしにくい状態になり、お腹に老廃物が沢山溜まってしまいます。老廃物がたまってしまうことでも悪玉菌が優勢になってしまうため、ますます腸内環境が悪くなってしまいます。

花粉症の改善のためには、便秘を解消し、腸を元気に動かすことも大切です。そこでお勧めなのが、腸揉みです。腸揉みは中国で伝統的に行われているもので、東洋医学系の治療院で行われています。また、最近ではリンパケアと同時に腸揉みを行うエステなども増えてきました。お腹を柔らかくすることで、お腹の動きを良くし、善玉菌が動ける場所を作ってあげましょう。

その3:胃腸に負担をかけない生活習慣を

善玉菌を増やしたり、腸を動かすことで、免疫は正常に近づきます。しかし、大切なのは継続する習慣であり、同時に、それ以上に胃腸に負担をかけない生活でもあります。ストレスがあると大腸の動きが低下するため、便秘や下痢になりやすくなります。また、暴飲暴食や睡眠不足でも胃腸の働きが悪くなり、消化吸収能力が低下します。機能が低下することによって免疫も正常に働きにくくなります。できるだけ規則正しい生活を行いながら、ストレス解消のための運動などを取り入れるようにしましょう。

「腸スッキリ! 」健康法  腸内環境を整えて、体も心も万事快調! (PHP文庫)
藤田紘一郎
PHP研究所 (2013-12-04)
売り上げランキング: 29,995

まとめ:花粉症改善には腸内環境を見直すことから

花粉症は鼻水や目のかゆみ、連続するくしゃみなど、自覚症状が出やすく辛いものです。こうした症状を単純に薬で止めたとしても対処療法でしかありません。腸内環境を整えることは、免疫を正常にするという根本的な改善につながります。腸をキレイに整えて、花粉症を起こしてしまう体質から改善しましょう。

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