It’s growing season, which means pollen is in the air, insects abound, and warmer temperatures to welcome us outdoors and shake off the cold of a long winter. Allergies are in full bloom as well, causing itchy, watery eyes, clogged sinuses, hay fever, skin rashes or redness, trouble breathing, and more. If you’re tired of relying on medications to relieve symptoms—some with side effects as uncomfortable as the allergies themselves—we have some tips to help you fight allergies the natural way.
Take Care of Your Immune System
Your immune system is key to fighting off allergies. It’s your number one weapon against the symptoms that make you miserable, so take care of it with an anti-inflammatory diet. Nutrient dense foods help boost your immune system so you can fight off allergens such as dust, pollen, mold, pet dander, and insect bites. Garlic is a natural antibiotic that helps ward off infections, viruses, and even allergies. Lemons and limes are loaded with Vitamin C to strengthen your immune system and help your body detoxify and be rid of impurities.
Eat More Raw Honey
Honey also contains enzymes that support overall immune system function, so dropping a tablespoon in your tea can help desensitize you when pollen is at its highest. If you’re allergic to honey, please avoid it! But if you’re in the clear, here are tips: Look for local raw honey. The bees in your area hop from flower to flower, and in making honey, those pollen strains get included. By picking up a local honey, you’re giving your body the specific allergens in your area to fight, helping you build a tolerance to the pollens most relevant to you.
Learn to Love…Apple Cider Vinegar
Just a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in your water can help fight off an allergy attack. Pair it with lemon, and it can help wake you up in the morning, too. A teaspoon in a neti-pot also adds a natural kick to flushing your sinuses.
Have You Used a Neti Pot?
Neti pots have been shown to improve the quality of life for those with respiratory ailments, and can reduce congestion and clear the sinuses. Just ensure the water you use is distilled and as sterile as possible. The chemicals treating our tap water are too harsh for sensitive sinus tissue, and can actually aggravate the problem.
Stinging Nettle Isn’t As Scary As it Sounds
Research on the stinging nettle leaf has proven this little plant naturally controls histamines, which are the main aggravators of seasonal allergies. There are a few ways in which stinging nettle can be used: as a tea, a tincture (dissolving in alcohol), or freeze-dried. But stinging nettles not only help relieve allergies, they have a lot of benefits packed into one plant. They’ve been used as diuretics dating back to medieval Europe to relieve urinary problems, joint pain, and fluid retention (edema).
Enjoy Eucalyptus and Frankincense Oils
Essential oils, such as eucalyptus or frankincense, are some of the most potent for killing highly allergic house mites. They work by reducing inflammation and detoxifying harmful bacteria, killing parasites and microorganisms that cause attacks, and neutralizing toxins. A few drops of eucalyptus can be put in a neti pot, inhaled via diffuser, or even used in your laundry as an antimicrobial agent. 25 drops in each laundry load should do the trick. Mix eucalyptus oil with coconut oil and rub on your chest or behind your ears while you sleep. Frankincense oil has very powerful effects in support of the immune system. Like eucalyptus oil, it can be rubbed on your chest and behind your ears, or diffused in your home or office to combat allergy triggers.
Take Care of Your Microbiome
Probiotic supplements can help boost your gut microbiome. We know from our look at the best diets for you, gut microbiomes are essential to overall health, and when yours is ticking along like clockwork, your immune system is at its strongest, not having to fight off infections with a compromised energy system. With the majority of your immune system being controlled and boosted by your GI tract, it’s no wonder a healthy microbiome is a powerful ally in the battle against allergies. Probiotics can be found in supplements, foods, and even local farmer’s markets.
You don’t have to turn to the Benadryl every time your eyes tear up and itch or your sinuses clog. Over time, medications become less effective as a means of treating our allergy symptoms, so these natural methods of allergy treatment can help relieve your suffering, saving the medicine for when nothing else will work. Your immune system will thank you, too!