Spring has sprung here in Atlanta and although we are looking forward the warm weather, we are totally dreading the allergies that come with it. If you have never been in Georgia during the Spring, lucky you! The pollen creates a thick yellow film that covers everything, making a large number of people victims of seasonal allegories. As we are in the thick of allergy season, we know most of the country has yet to experience all that Spring has to offer, so we came up with a list of our favorite Natural Remedies and Prevention for Seasonal Allergies. We hope that this list can lead some to away from popping that over the counter allergy medicine every single morning and towards an approach that protects the natural process of your immune system.
Allergies are due to a hypersensitivity in the immune system that causes the release of the damaging histamines. And when this happens we feel just awful! Cue the itchy eyes, non-stop sneezing, congestion, and post-nasal drip. All of these can really wear your body down and impact your day-to-day life. Over the counter medications, antihistamines, and decongestants do a pretty good job in battling allergy symptoms, but they come with sides effects. Some side effects include drowsiness, dryness of the eyes, nose, and mouth, and heart palpitations. We fully believe that with patience and diligence allergy symptoms can be treated naturally. Here are our favorite ways to combat seasonal allergies:
1. Raw Local Honey
Consuming raw local honey can work as a preventative measure in avoiding the symptoms of allergies because it contains local pollen that is causing them. By giving your body small doses of the local pollen, it allows your immune system to build up a defense. Adding a couple tablespoons each day to your favorite tea, yogurt, or smoothie can help relieve your itchy eyes and congestion.
2. Wear sunglasses
Now you may be wondering why wearing sunglasses has anything to do with allergy prevention. Think about it, any time you are outside your eyes are open for the most part and they have no barriers or filtering system such as cilia (those tiny little hairs) in the nose. This makes it extremely easy for allergens to enter the eye and cause inflammation. By wearing sunglasses any time you step outside you are putting up a wall of defense for your eyes, limiting the amount of pollen that enters them.
3. Neti Pot
The use of neti pots have been used for centuries, it originated in the Ayurvedic medical traditions hundreds of years ago. Neti pots are a great way to help clear the sinuses and remove congestion by clearing the nasal passages of any allergens and breaking down mucus. Often times, the buildup of allergens and mucus can lead to painful sinus infections. Any days where you spend a lot of time outside, use a neti pot at the end of the day to clear everything out. The best time to use it is right after you shower since the steam of the shower got a head start on loosening the mucus. It is very important to use a high-quality neti pot and distilled water when rinsing to avoid other elements irritating the sinuses.
4. Essential Oils
There are many essential oils that can help open up the nasal passages and lungs during allergy season. Our favorites to use include menthol, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, and frankincense. If you have a diffuser at home you can add a couple of drops of your favorites or make a concoction of your own. We love to mix lavender with eucalyptus and frankincense at night and in the morning we mix eucalyptus and peppermint oil. If you don’t own a diffuser you can add a few drops to a cotton pad and place it in your shower, taking big, deep breaths. doTerra also makes an amazing respiratory blend called Breathe. It comes in a roller stick that you can apply directly to your skin since its diluted with coconut oil. This stays in our purse and we dab in right under our nostrils any time we start to feel congested.
5. Nourish Your Immune System
As your body starts to experience the symptoms of seasonal allergies, your immune system is struggling to function. Adding supplements or foods that support your immune system such as vitamin C, Zinc, Stinging Nettle, and Probiotics can give you’re the immune system a boost that is desperately needed. Try to stay away from food and beverages that cause congestion such as sugar, dairy, and alcohol.
We hope these suggestions bring you relief. Just remember, natural remedies can take a little time to become fully effective.