7 Ways to Beat Allergies Naturally
Aaa-choo! ‘Tis the season for Kleenex, eye drops, and decongestants. Allergy season is upon us. Its symphony can be heard in the refrains of sniffles, sneezes and nose blowing. If you suffer from the wide array of seasonal allergy symptoms such as fatigue; sinus congestion; itchy eyes, nose or throat; or watery eyes, don’t let a high pollen count get you down this summer. Here are 7 natural ways to beat allergies from my latest book, Allergy-Proof.
1. Drink More Water
Drink at least 8 to 10 cups of pure water daily to support the natural cleansing systems in your body. Research even shows that staying well hydrated helps 38 percent of women relieve allergy symptoms. (For references, see my book Allergy-Proof). And, I’m sure the same is true for men. So, drink up.
2. Drink Green Tea
Green tea is packed with a powerful antioxidant phytonutrient called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) that blocks histamine and immunoglobulin E (IgE). Both of these naturally-produced chemicals are linked with uncomfortable allergy-symptoms. Because EGCG blocks their production, allergy symptoms are reduced. Don’t like the taste of green tea, add matcha powder to your dairy-free fruit smoothies. (Dairy products are mucus-forming and can aggravate allergies). Matcha is simply powdered green tea. Drink two to three cups of green tea daily for the best results.
3. Take Quercetin to Quell Allergy Symptoms
Quercetin is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-histamine phytonutrient. Quercetin has an excellent ability to reduce allergy symptoms and to improve lung function. Apples and onions are excellent sources of quercetin. Some studies show that people who eat a lot of apples have improved lung function and reduced risk of lung conditions. Other good sources include: berries, cabbage, cauliflower, nuts, and black, green, or white tea.
4. Choose Nettles for Allergies
Native Americans used stinging nettles for thousands of years to treat many health conditions, including allergies. Now, science has proven what these wise people knew from experience: that nettles are an effective allergy treatment. Unlike pharmaceuticals which cause heart problems or drowsiness, nettles does neither. Nettles are conveniently available in the dried form for making tea, liquid tinctures to take as drops, or in capsule form.
5. Pick Pineapple Enzyme for Allergy Relief
Extracted from pineapple, when taken on an empty stomach, the enzyme bromelain treats sinusitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, and other respiratory disorders; acts as an anti-inflammatory; and reduces lung swelling. I usually suggest one or two capsules containing 5000 mcu each on an empty stomach, three times daily.
6. Select Homeopathic Allium Cepa
If you have allergy symptoms that are worse indoors, at night or in warm rooms, along with red and burning eyes and a clear, burning nasal discharge, the homeopathic remedy Allium Cepa may be best for you. Start with a 6X or 30X remedy if you can find it. Let three pellets dissolve under the tongue every 15 minutes for the first hour or two. Then take three pellets, three times daily.
7. Flush Your Nasal Passages
Using a neti pot, which is a small ceramic dish shaped a bit like a gravy boat, you can flush your sinuses with a salt-water solution. Most health food stores sell neti pots and saline packets ready to mix with water. You can either follow the package directions or you can purchase sea salt and mix it with pure warm water. Start with one-quarter teaspoon of sea salt to one cup of water. Simply lean over a sink and tilt your head to the side to pour the water into one nostril and allow it to run out the other nostril. It may take some practice but it is an excellent way to cleanse and eliminate mucous and microbes. Over time, you can increase to one-half a teaspoon of sea salt per cup of water and cool down the temperature of water you use.
Adapted from Allergy-Proof: Over 60 All-Natural, Drug-Free Ways to Beat Allergies from Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, PhD. For informational purposes only. Always consult your physician prior to taking any new supplements or remedies.