Natural Methods to Combat Allergies
Stop exposing your body to the harmful and artificial ingredients found in many over the counter allergy medications. Especially when many healthy alternative medications are available that are just as effective in relieving allergy symptoms.
Allergies refer to the exaggerated immune response that some people have when they eat certain foods, touch certain substances or inhale irritants such as pollen, mold spores, pet dander or dust. The symptoms of allergies usually include itchy watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, headache and fatigue. Many over-the-counter remedies are available and can be effective. However, there are many natural remedies that are just as effective that do not contain the side effects or unhealthy ingredients that are sometimes contained in modern medical remedies. The following are a few natural methods to combat allergies that are safe, effective and easy to use.
This remedy simply flushes out your sinuses with salt water which helps wash away any kind of irritant that is causing you to have allergy symptoms. This process can easily be done by using a Neti Pot or a large squeeze bottle. Fill the Neti Pot or squeeze bottle with a saline solution. You can either purchase a pre- mixed packet, or make your own. To make your own, mix together one quart of distilled or boiled water, one teaspoon of baking soda and three teaspoons of non-iodized salt. Mix about eight ounces of the solution, and pour it into the Neti Pot or squeeze bottle. Tilt your head forward and pour the solution in one nostril while it drains out the other nostril. This works best if you take quick short breaths while you are pouring in the solution.
Try a herbal supplement, which may be as effective as over the counter medication, minus the unpleasant side effects. Yamoa has had several studies done on it that show it's effectiveness with respiratory issues.
Humidity refers to how much water vapor is in the air which plays a big part in how allergies are treated and maintained. When the air is cool outside at night and the humidity is low inside, running a cool-mist humidifier can help remove pollutants and allergens in the air. The water droplets in the air stick to the allergens, the allergens become too heavy to stay in the air, and they fall to the floor before you have a chance to inhale them.
Inhaling steam is a great way to relieve the congestion that is sometimes associated with allergies. One easy way to do this is to fill a saucepan with water, and bring it to a boil. Turn off the stove, and remove the pan from the heat. Place three drops each of eucalyptus and rosemary essential oil, and two drops each of myrtle and tee tree essential oil into the hot water. Lean over the water with a towel over your head to keep in the steam. Take several deep breaths for about five to ten minutes. This method can be repeated up to three times each day. This will help clear up nasal stuffiness and congestion that results from certain allergies.
The air in your home that you breathe every day contains mold spores, pet dander, dust and pollen. Using HEPA filters can help trap these harmful irritants and bring relief to your allergy symptoms. HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air. This type of filter works by forcing air through a mesh that traps these harmful irritants (even tobacco smoke) so that you do not breathe them into your system. HEPA filters are in most air purifiers as well as many vacuum cleaners. Air purifiers can be found in most home improvement stores and should be placed in the room in your home where you spend the most time.
Native American and Northern Europeans have been using butterbur to treat inflammation and headaches for many years. Butterbur is part of the daisy plant family and has also been used by many Americans to help relieve the symptoms of certain allergies. The British Medical Journal recently published a study that suggests that taking one tablet of butterbur four times a day was as effective as a common antihistamine being prescribed by doctors for their patients with allergies. It works by combating leukotrienes and histamines which are released by your body during an allergic reaction.
Quercetin is a substance that is found in the skin of onions and apples and is part of a class of nutrients known as bioflavonoids. There are many different bioflavonoids. However, quercetin is the one with the highest amount of anti-allergy activity. The anti-inflammatory properties of quercetin keep the lungs and nasal passages from swelling when the body comes in contact with allergic irritants. It is also a powerful anti-histamine that blocks the release of chemicals that causes itchy, watery eyes. Quercetin offers all of these benefits without the side effects commonly experienced from taking traditional allergy medications such as drowsiness and rapid heartbeat.
Bromelain is an enzyme that is found in pineapple juice and also in the stem of the pineapple. Bromelain is often used to reduce inflammation, especially in the sinuses after an injury or after surgery. Bromelain also helps to thin mucus which helps clear stuffiness and congestion that most allergy sufferers have to deal with. You can obtain small amounts of bromelain from eating fresh pineapple. However, larger amounts can be found in supplements. Bromelain is available in capsules, tablets, ointments and can also be found in many enzyme blends and vitamins.
Probiotics for a healthy digestive system
Since eighty percent of the immune system is found in the digestive tract, a healthy gut is important for optimal health and wellness. Probiotics can help keep your digestive system running smoothly by keeping good bacteria and bad bacteria in balance. Since not all strains of probiotics are helpful for the same reasons, it is important to choose brands of probiotics that contain Lactobacillus. Probiotics have been known to provide the following benefits.
- Improves the function of the intestine’s mucosal lining
- Stimulates the production of substances that enhance the immune system
- Keeps bad bacteria from thriving
- Promotes a healthy immune system
If you or someone you know is battling allergies, and would like to find relief naturally, consider some of the safe and natural remedies mentioned above. While over-the-counter and prescription remedies are effective, they can sometimes contain unhealthy artificial ingredients or cause unwanted side effects.