9 Natural Solutions to Seasonal Allergies
Ahh, we’ve finally made it out of winter and into 🌸SPRING🌸! This means we can prepare for April showers ☔️ that will bring May flowers 🌷…and the dreaded seasonal allergies that come along with that 😮💨.
Do you suffer from seasonal allergies? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of people do and although the weather is nicer during this time of year, many people actually avoid going outdoors in hopes to avoid the incessant sneezing, itchy eyes, and runny noses. Especially because in order to do so comfortably, they feel like they have to be popping anti-allergy medications around the clock 🔄! And I don’t want that for you. You should be able to freely explore the outdoors now that the sun is shining ☀️ for just a little bit longer these days. So today I thought would be the perfect day to share with you these:
9 Natural Solutions to Seasonal Allergies
First, let’s talk about what the deal is with seasonal allergies:
When a person has seasonal allergies, this means that their body has determined something in their environment (pollen, pet dander, dust) is an “invader” and works to try to protect itself. It does this by releasing histamines, which then cause those pesky allergy symptoms we’re so familiar with to flare up.
Typically people deal with these symptoms by taking an antihistamine medication such as Claritin, Allegra, Zyrtec, etc…which is fine, sometimes you just have to do what needs to be done to get through the day. However, some people experience the side effects of these medications (blurry vision, dry mouth, drowsiness, anxiety, irritability, etc..) and are looking for more natural alternatives.
So today I will discuss some of my favorite supplements and herbal options that help to combat seasonal allergies naturally, as well as a few other things you can try at home to set you up for a successful sneeze-free spring. Let’s get started!
1. NETTLE LEAF 🌿
This herb, also known as 𝑼𝒓𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒂 𝒅𝒊𝒐𝒄𝒊𝒂, has quite a bit of research showing its effect on allergy symptoms. Bioactive compounds in Nettles have been shown to block histamine receptors, just like the popular allergy medications I mentioned above, but without the side effects! Additionally, this herb has been found to inhibit the inflammatory pathways that are responsible for those annoying allergic symptoms. Take a Nettle leaf supplement or drinking a nettle infusion (tea) works best! Studies show that 300mg 2-3x daily in capsule form or 3-6 cups of tea daily is the most effective. Click here for instructions on how to make a nettle infusion.
2. GREEN TEA 🌿
Green tea (aka Camellia sinensis) contains methylated-EGCG which is a potent antioxidant and works by blocking histamine production and IgE receptors (receptors involved in the allergic response). Consuming 2-3 cups per day is safe and beneficial, but be aware of the caffeine content and try to drink earlier in the day so your sleep is not affected.
3. BUTTERBUR 🌿
Butterbur (Petasites hybridus) is an anti-inflammatory herb that has been shown to reduce/block leukotrienes and histamines, which effectively reduces allergy symptoms. Some studies have even compared its efficacy to cetrizine(Zyrtec) and butterbur showed similar results in effectiveness but without the side effects associated with the cetrizine.
TAKE SUPPORTIVE NUTRIENTS
This is probably one of the most well-studied nutrients for seasonal allergies. Quercetin is a flavonoid found in many plants and is a potent antioxidant. To get technical, it is actually known in medical terms as a mast-cell stabilizer and antihistamine. Its effects have been shown to decrease your runny nose, itchy watery eyes, and congestion, therefore making it an excellent natural alternative for treating seasonal allergies.
Bromelain is an enzyme most commonly found in pineapples! Studies have shown that bromelain has the ability to reduce inflammation and reduces the nasal swelling and congestion associated with allergies. Also, when taken with quercitin it increases the effectiveness. Clinically, I have seen that ~ 500mg 3x/day shows beneficial effects on allergy symptoms. Eating lots of pineapple doesn’t hurt either! (unless you are allergic, then for obvious reasons, please do not eat lots of pineapple or take a bromelain supplement)
3. VITAMIN C
Vitamin C is a powerhouse and literally does everything, so it’s no surprise that it is ESSENTIAL in reducing allergy symptoms. It’s a mega-antioxidant, protecting your cells from damage and reducing the reaction of your body to environmental triggers. Dosing depends on the severity of your allergies, but higher doses (2,000mg daily and up) are typically needed for beneficial effects. For this reason, many people actually choose to get vitamin C intravenously at their local IV nutrient lounges. Don’t forget food sources of Vitamin C as well! Found in citrus, leafy greens, broccoli and kiwi.
CLEAR IT ALL OUT
1. NASAL IRRIGATION
Nasal irrigation is the practice of using a saline (saltwater) solution to gently rinse out the nasal passages. This helps to clear out any allergens that may get trapped in the mucus of your nasal passages. You can do this in a few different ways, the most popular being using a neti pot, which can be purchased at most any store that has a pharmacy section or online. IMPORTANT: ONLY use distilled, bottled, or previously-boiled water when doing nasal irrigation and clean/dry between uses.
2. AIR OUT YOUR HOME
In the spring, many people keep their windows closed to avoid pollen from entering their homes. Although I understand this reasoning, I find it important to air out your home at least once per week. Stagnant indoor air has many allergens from our skin, pet dander, and dust that can worsen allergies. So opening up your windows and letting the air flow through for ~ 30 minutes to an hour, weekly will be beneficial to you.
3. USE AN AIR PURIFIER
If your home is prone to allergen-build-up (such as, if you have a pet or wear your shoes indoors) then consider investing in an air purifier with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate) filter to help you remove allergens and irritants regularly. You might also consider buying certain houseplants that naturally clean the air such as bamboo palm, peace lily, and English ivy plants.
That’s all, folks!
I hope you learned something new reading about my 9 natural solutions to seasonal allergies. If you struggle with allergies, I encourage you to give one (or all) of these solutions a try and let me know how they work for you. Also, if you are interested in purchasing any of the herbal products or supplements I mentioned above from a quality company, please click here to access my dispensary.
If you want more personalized guidance on improving your health, I’d love to work with you one-on-one. If interested, please book an appointment with me when it feels right for you.
Wishing you health & happiness always,