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Natural Seasonal Support
As the season shifts from winter to spring, it brings with it many wonderful changes to our environment. Warmer weather, longer days, the reawakening of flowers and plants, the return of migrating birds and butterflies. But as nature comes back to life, trees, grasses, and weeds start to release pollen and outdoor molds start releasing spores which, for many, leads to seasonal allergies.
People who are allergic to these particles have exaggerated immune responses which cause chemicals, including histamine, to be released into the bloodstream to defend against them. It’s these elevated histamine levels that cause allergy symptoms which may include: sneezing, nasal congestion, coughing, and itchy nose, eyes or throat. Allergy symptoms may be mild to down right maddening.
If you want to reduce your dependence on medication, such as antihistamines or decongestants, or you simply want more tools in your allergy-relief toolbelt, here are some natural remedies that you can try.
Nettle leaf, also known as Stinging Nettle, fosters healthy histamine levels during allergy season. PURE SYNERGY® Organic Freeze-Dried Nettle Leaf powder can be made into a tea, added to your favorite recipe, or you can take the convenient capsules. To support a healthy response during pollen season, it is commonly recommended to take nettle daily for a month before, and while the pollen is in the air.
Our nasal passages are full of nooks and crannies where dust and pollen can get trapped. Until these potential allergens are expelled, our bodies will likely keep trying to flush them out via a runny nose, sneezing, coughing, or watery eyes. Use of a neti pot with sterile, saline water is a safe and effective form of sinus irrigation that hails from the Indian Ayurvedic tradition. It’s a great way to clear nasal passageways of allergens, irritants, and congestion in order to relieve allergy symptoms.
Who knew that little honey bees could be our allergy allies? That’s because bees living in our local area go from flower to flower collecting the very pollen that may be causing our seasonal suffering. Eating local raw honey, therefore, can help build up an immunity to local pollen. A bonus is that honey is delicious and contains enzymes that support overall immune function.
Much like local honey, local bee pollen offers a way to introduce flower pollen into our immune systems. This bee food, made of flower pollen, nectar, enzymes, honey, and wax, is also great for our overall health. It’s packed with nutrients, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, and has antimicrobial properties that kill potentially harmful bacteria. So sprinkle some on your yogurt or smoothie bowl, toss in your salad, or just take it by the spoonful.
The gut contains 70 to 80 percent of the cells that make up our immune system. Therefore, imbalances in our immune system are directly correlated to imbalances in our gut microbiome, or the microorganisms that live inside our digestive tract. These imbalances can cause us to have more severe reactions to allergens like pollen, mold, or dust. Introducing probiotics, or “good bacteria,” into our diet can help bring back balance to the digestive and immune systems. A good source of probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as pickles, kimchi, kombucha, kefir, or with a probiotic supplement.
APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
More than just an ingredient in your salad dressing, apple cider vinegar is an age-old, natural remedy that is commonly recommended by traditional practitioners. The theory is that it helps reduce mucous production and cleanse the lymphatic system. To take it, just add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a cup of hot or cold water, with a bit of honey and/or a squirt of lemon to make it more palatable, and swig it down.
Staying hydrated is important for every aspect of our health and is especially important during pollen season. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, headaches, dizziness, and can prompt the body to produce higher histamine levels, which can make allergy symptoms worse. So keep your water bottle handy, and be sure to keep drinking all day.
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