Natural Allergy Remedies for Nashvillians
Runny nose, itchy eyes, sneezing, congestion...sound like Spring in Nashville to me! It seems as though a majority of Nashvillians share the woes from triggers such as dust mites, mold, animal dander, and of course pollen.
Allergy symptoms and the lovely side-effects of common allergy medications can range from bothersome to down-right crippling. Since we can’t all live in a bubble from March through October, we wanted to share some natural allergy remedies since they are the least invasive and most cost-effective forms of treatment.
1) Start at home - Dust and dust mites are lurking everywhere, so take a quick glance around the house for some of these problem areas:
* Heavy fabric curtains
* Upholstered furniture
* Wash pillow cases, sheets, and blankets weekly in water 130˚(F) water
* Dust your headboard multiple times each week - It only takes a minute!
2) Nasal Irrigation - Rinsing away pollen with a little saltwater, what could be more natural than that? Flushing out the sinuses has been a common practice in India for thousands of years. Neti is actually Sanskrit for “nasal cleaning.” Neti pots are inexpensive and easy to use. The simplest (and least expensive) method requires not pot at all - snot water from your very own cupped hands. Be sure to use clean, filtered water!
3) You Are What You Eat - A recent German study linked foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids to a reduction in allergy symptoms. Omega-3s are inflammation fighters, so load up on flaxseed oils, walnuts, cold-water fish, and animal proteins like meat and fish. Buy local, grass-fed, grass-finished when possible!
4) MythBuster - Old wives tales such as adding local honey to hot tea certainly tastes good, but unfortunately the pollen content in honey will not cure allergic rhinitis. The pollens found in honey likely does not include the same pollen strains that affect you.
5) I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butterbur - The herb butterbur has been studied and found to improve symptoms in participants of multiple case studies by blocking histamine and leukotrienes, which are both chemicals causing inflammatory allergic reactions. Be aware that if you are allergic to ragweed, butterbur is not the solution for you as it is derived from the ragweed plant family. While you’re at the health store, you might also take a look at quercetin (a natural antioxidant) and carotenoids (like beta-carotene).
6) Keep The Bugs Away - For some people with severe allergies, cockroaches can cause such bad reactions that asthmatic attacks can even be triggered. Be sure to keep food in sealed containers and off countertops. Roach traps, pesticides, and exterminators may be the way to go.
We hope you enjoy the beautiful Southern Spring this year...even with allergies! Whole Foods Market always has outstanding resources for natural living. Check out their “Allergy Season Survival Guide” here for even more ideas to boost your immune system and treat your symptoms as naturally as possible.