Achoo! Seasonal Allergies Have Arrived: Keep Your Sinuses Clear and Air Fresh with These Tips

Don't let spring allergies slow you down!Minnesotans usually welcome spring with open arms. But for many, spring blooms also bring seasonal allergies. Before you reach for the over-the-counter medications, consider these natural ways to combat your seasonal allergies.

Why Do I Get Allergies?

Seasonal allergies kick into high gear when trees, shrubs, grasses, and weeds start to bloom and produce pollen. Pollen travels through the air and is brought into your home on your pets and shoes. It irritates the lining of your sinuses, eyes, and throat and causes your body to produce histamine.

Histamine causes your immune system to kick into high gear and produce the watery eyes, runny nose, and scratchy throat you associate with allergies. In people with asthma, the effects of histamine may make asthma symptoms worse.

Natural Allergy Relief

Seasonal allergies are no fun, but there are ways to get relief without visiting the pharmacy. Prevention is the first line of defense. Make your home a pollen-free zone by keeping windows and doors closed and replacing your furnace filter regularly. Use a DIY air quality testing kit to measure the amount of pollen in your home’s air.

You can also make small changes to your diet to help prevent or reduce allergy symptoms. Load up on dark leafy greens, yellow and orange vegetables, and onions and garlic. Avoid alcohol, dairy, bananas, cucumbers, and citrus fruits as these foods can make your symptoms worse.

If your nose is already runny, try a saline rinse. The saline will clear out your nose and give you some relief. Consider making an appointment with your acupuncturist, since acupuncture is a known treatment for allergy symptoms.

Before heading outdoors, check the pollen forecast for your area. You can search by city or zip and get an idea of when pollen counts will be low or high so you can plan your outdoor activities.

If seasonal allergies make you want to go back into winter hibernation, contact me. I can help you measure the pollen in your home’s indoor air and find natural remedies for allergy symptoms.

Here’s to breathing easy and living life to the fullest!

Gene Wood, Life’s Pure Balance

What’s Lurking in Your Workplace? It’s Time for Commercial Spring Cleaning!

What germs are on your microwave handle?When you hear “spring cleaning,” you probably think about rolling up your sleeves and giving your home a deep clean. But your office or other commercial space deserves some spring cleaning love, too.

Commercial spaces are full of hard work, productivity, and creativity, but they are also rife with dust, dander, germs, and bacteria. Every surface of a commercial space can benefit from spring cleaning (and regular cleaning throughout the year!).

Countertops and Desks

Think about the things that cross your work desk, reception desk, and kitchen and break room countertops every day. Hands, food, purses, lunch bags, paper, pens, hair—they all grace the surfaces in your workspace, leaving germs and bacteria behind. You’ll even find dust in the far reaches of your desk or behind the break room coffeemaker.

Floors, Handles, Switches, and Knobs

Whatever germs and bacteria lurk on the bottom of your and your coworkers’ and clients’ shoes is in your carpet. Add dust, dander, and other little nasties at the workplace, and it’s easy to see why you shouldn’t neglect the carpet when spring cleaning the office.

Handles, knobs, switches, keyboards, and phone buttons are also germ hot spots. Give them a thorough scrub when you’re spring cleaning, too.

Refrigerators and Microwaves

Everyone knows how important it is to keep the bathroom cleaned regularly. But many people overlook the break room or kitchen, and it can be just as dirty. In fact, a recent study found that break rooms and kitchens—and sinks and microwave door handles specifically—have more germs than any other surfaces in the office.

Spring cleaning your office surfaces is an important annual task, but you really should be cleaning your workspace on a more regular basis. But you don’t want to make people sick from harsh cleaning chemicals. Instead, choose a commercial-grade, natural all-purpose cleaner that will powerfully clean all of your office surfaces without toxic ingredients. Contact me for to learn more!

Here’s to breathing easy and living life to the fullest!

Gene Wood, Life’s Pure Balance