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