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Nature's Remedies for Seasonal Allergies

Organization: Root Health, Nutrition and Wellness

Authors: Veronica Rechten, MS

Publish Date: 3/5/24



As the seasons change and nature comes to life, so does the unfortunate rise of seasonal allergies. The sneezing, itchy eyes, and congestion can put a damper on the joy of spring and summer. While over-the-counter medications are commonly used to alleviate symptoms, they can actually be damaging long-term to our gut health. In this blog post, we'll explore some more natural approaches to help you find relief without relying solely on pharmaceuticals.


Local Honey: A Sweet Solution

One of the most beloved natural remedies for seasonal allergies is local honey. Consuming raw, local honey is thought to help build immunity to local pollen. By exposing your immune system to trace amounts of pollen regularly, you may experience a reduction in allergy symptoms over time. Incorporate a spoonful of local honey into your daily routine, such as adding it to tea or drizzling it over yogurt. Honey is also a great cough remedy as it coats the throat. If you live in NJ, we have an abundance of farms and farm stands where you can find honey from your area. (NOTE: children under 1yr should not consume honey)


Quercetin-Rich Foods: Nature's Antihistamine

Quercetin is a natural plant pigment with powerful antioxidant properties. It is known for its ability to stabilize mast cells (the cells that release histamine which causes allergic reactions). Include quercetin-rich foods in your diet, such as apples, berries, onions, and leafy greens. Alternatively, speak with your dietitian or doctor about quercetin supplements!


Herbal Teas and Tinctures:

Certain herbs can provide relief from allergy symptoms. Chamomile is anti-inflammatory and can help calm irritated mucous membranes and ease congestion. Peppermint can act as a natural decongestant, promoting easier breathing. Nettle (which comes from the stinging nettle plant) has been used for centuries to alleviate allergy symptoms. These can be used a few times/day in a tea using a tea infuser, or they can be used in their concentrated form in a tincture. These can be made at home, or purchased from most herbal shops. As always, please discuss any herbs you wish to consume with your doctor to prevent any interactions with medications, or if you are pregnant or nursing.


Saline Nasal Rinse: Clearing the Airways

Our sinuses often have trouble fully draining, so bacteria and debris can sit in them causing discomfort, irritation, and even sinus infection. A saline nasal rinse is a simple yet effective way to flush out allergens and irritants from your nasal passages. Using a saline solution helps moisturize the nasal passages and reduces inflammation. You can use a neti pot or a saline nasal spray for this purpose. Nasal sprays that contain xylitol (such as Xlear spray) can also be used to kill bacteria in the sinuses. Ensure you follow proper hygiene and use distilled or sterile water when using any nasal rinse devices..


Essential Oils: Aromatherapy for Allergies

Incorporating essential oils into your routine can provide relief from seasonal allergies. Eucalyptus oil is known for its anti-inflammatory and decongestant properties, making it a popular choice for easing respiratory symptoms. Lavender oil, with its calming effects, may also help alleviate stress-related allergy symptoms. Diffuse these oils in your living space or add a few drops to a bowl of steaming water for inhalation.

 

While seasonal allergies can be a challenge, incorporating these natural remedies into your routine may offer relief without the side effects commonly associated with traditional medications. However, it's crucial to listen to your body and consult with a healthcare professional before making significant changes to your allergy management plan. By embracing nature's remedies, you can navigate allergy season with greater comfort and enjoy the beauty of each changing season.

 

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