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Spring allergies affect many people who get treated with antihistamines and other prescription medications.
Such allergies, which usually manifest symptoms of hay fever and sinus infections differ from anaphylactic (tightening of throat & airways) food allergies, which are significantly more serious.
If you dread the spring because the newly blossomed flowers make you sneeze and fill your sinuses with pressure…
The good news is that there are several natural foods and supplements that can decrease your body’s histamine response to those environmental triggers.
And while many rely on over-the-counter medications to suppress their spring allergies, you might be able to get the same effect from natural substances that don’t have side effects like drowsiness.
Common Causes of Spring Allergies
Spring allergies can be triggered by a number of seasonal-related factors, with the biggest culprits including:
- Pollen–these are small wind-blown particles or spores that come from plants such as grass, flowers, trees, and weeds.
Pollen levels get worse during spring, leading to an explosion in allergic reactions.
Most of the allergies associated with spring emanate from tree pollen since that’s when all the trees are sprouting new leaves.
The most common trees associated with allergic reactions include oak, cypress, hickory, poplar, and elm.
The rain that brings all those beautiful flowers and green grasses also stirs up mold into the air, causing those with sensitivity to react to it.
Spring allergies are especially frustrating…because after months of being held captive inside…
You’re ready to venture out and explore the world that is just beginning to bloom with life. Unfortunately, those very things that brought about the bloom are the triggers of sneezing, runny noses, and much more.
And when you’re down with allergic reactions, you’ll manifest symptoms such as:
- Runny nose, congestion, sneezing
- Dry, watery, and/or itchy eyes
- Severe headaches or migraines
- Sinus pressure
- Post nasal drip i.e. extra mucus in the back of your nose & throat, making you constantly want to clear your throat…and
But it’s not all doom and gloom…
Because there are foods and supplements that can provide you quick relief…
You can indulge some of the following natural sources of relief for your spring allergies:
- Butterbur–this is a shrub plant that functions similarly to an antihistamine, but without the side effects. It’s effective for addressing symptoms such as headaches, coughs, and hay fever, and can ease the accompanying inflammatory symptoms.
Butterbur is available in tablet or capsule form in most health food stores.
- Quercetin— a compound naturally found in certain foods, including onions and apples, quercetin is a flavonoid with powerful antioxidant effects in your body.
It helps to slow and reduce the release of histamines, which are at the heart of allergic responses.
One study on rats found that quercetin might also be able to aid in severe food-related anaphylaxis…
And while it won’t ever replace an EpiPen, prolonged use of quercetin can decrease the body’s response to allergic triggers.
Quercetin is found in citrus fruits, green tea, apples, onions, and cruciferous vegetables, and is also available as a supplement.
In order for it to have a noticeable effect on allergy symptoms, it’s advisable to take it consistently for at least two weeks.
- Stinging Nettle–this is an herb used to treat allergic rhinitis, otherwise known as hay fever. It’s effective because it lowers levels of histamines, which spark a barrage of allergy symptoms.
Stinging nettle can be found in tea or capsule form…
And when you decide to take it, be sure to start in the days and weeks leading up to peak allergy season in order to gain optimal relief.
- Bromelain–an enzyme found in pineapples and papaya, bromelain is widely used for addressing inflammation and swelling that arise from excess histamines…
And it’s particularly effective at reducing swelling in nasal passageways.
Bromelain is available in capsule form supplement and can be taken on its own or in combination with other enzymes.
For best results in relieving allergy, take it on its own.
- Fermented Foods— you probably know that the healthy probiotics (live bacteria & yeasts) found in fermented foods can boost your immunity, but it turns out that it can address both food and seasonal allergies as well.
The best way to harness the allergy-fighting powers of probiotics is to eat fermented foods daily, like sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha.
You can also take probiotic supplements daily, even though, not all strains will be effective.
Research found that lactobacilli and bifidobacteria strains were the most effective at reducing allergy-related symptoms.
- Omega-3 Fats— these fatty acids found in foods like salmon, mackerel, sardines, and walnuts, among others, can help decrease inflammation…
And are therapeutic for stress.
This connection can also make them effective at alleviating the severity of spring allergies since stress is known to make the symptoms worse.
You can indulge Omega-3 rich foods on a daily basis or take an EPA/DHA supplement, like fish oil or krill oil.
With all the goodies the foregoing foods and supplements load…
There is a caveat…
Many supplements, including fish oil and probiotics, are generally considered as safe, but herbal supplements like stinging nettle and butterbur, could have adverse side effects.
If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, natural remedies for spring allergies might not be safe for you.
All in all, be sure to check with your doctor before embarking on anything new.
And once you’ve gone through this article, please do one more thing…
Share it widely to empower others to enjoy the outdoors while they can.
My heartfelt gratitude for your patronage.