Say good-bye to seasonal allergies
Spring has arrived in North Texas and so has allergy season for many of us. It is estimated that, in the United States, over 50 million people suffer from seasonal allergies. Symptoms can range from mild to debilitating (for some) and they impact many areas of our daily lives from work to play. No wonder people are reaching for the quick fix of pharmaceutical drugs available by prescription or over the counter. Many of those, however, are accompanied by annoying side effects and recent studies have linked traditional allergy pharmaceuticals with higher incidents of Alzheimer’s and dementia.
The good news is that there are natural remedies that help with allergy symptoms. The bad news is that it may take some trial and error to see what works best for each individual. Here are some herbs to try: Dong quai (anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory), eyebright (congestion, itchy eyes), gingko biloba (anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory), stinging nettles (anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory), yarrow (congestion, secretions), red clover (builds body’s resistance to allergens).
From a naturopathic viewpoint, allergies are aggravated by adrenal, immune and digestive weaknesses and improving overall health is an important part in reducing symptoms. Acupuncture has been effective for some people. One often overlooked factor is long-term stress, which severely impacts the optimal functioning of the adrenal glands. You will notice that the more stressed you are, the more severe your symptoms will be. So a reduction in stress and change in your diet will definitely help improve your allergy symptoms. Here is a helpful list of foods to avoid and foods to add to your diet:
Avoid: Alcohol, caffeine, and dairy products, bananas and citrus fruit, chocolate, food colorings (tartrazine), peanuts, red meat, sugar, wheat
Add: Dark green, leafy vegetables, deep yellow and orange vegetables, nettles, bamboo shoots, cabbage, beet tops, beets, carrots, yams, onions, garlic, ginger, cayenne, horseradish
Try some or all of these tips and see if you can actually enjoy your spring outdoors this year!