It's hay fever season and you wake up sneezing and with a runny nose. Over the counter antihistamines make you drowsy and the prescription medication your doctor gave you upsets your stomach. If you're tired of battling the side effects of your allergy medication, here are some natural approaches to getting through hay fever season.
Natural Cures Focus on Strengthening Your Body
Make a trip to a naturopathic clinic for your allergies and the doctor will begin by looking at your immune system. They find that allergies are often the result of your body's defenses not being able effectively fight off the allergens. To boost your immune system, they will offer a number of natural remedies.
Adding these foods to your diet will improve your immune system support:
- Dark green, leafy vegetables such as kale and spinach
- Yellow and orange vegetables such as peppers and carrots
- Cabbage, beets, yams and bamboo shots
- Garlic, onions, ginger and horseradish
Remove these foods from your diet during allergy season as they can make your immune system less effective:
- Caffeine and alcohol
- Dairy products
- Sugar wheat
- Foods containing food coloring
Vitamin and Mineral Remedies
Boost your immune system with these supplements during allergy season.
- Bioflavonoids, such as hesperidin, for their antihistaminic effect.
- Flaxseed oil, which is a strong antioxidant.
- Probiotics to improve the intestinal bacteria.
- Vitamins A, C, E and the mineral Zinc to improve immune system response to allergens.
A number of herbs can prevent the symptoms of an allergy attack.
- Gingko - This contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Milk thistle - This herb reduces inflammation.
- Red clover - This builds up your immune system's resistance to allergens.
Getting Rid of Allergy Symptoms Naturally
There are a number of ways to reduce the sneezing, running nose and itchy eyes from an allergic reaction without resorting to over the counter medications.
- Neti pots - Pollen has a prickly exterior so it can stick to the plants that it's trying to pollinate. This also makes them stick to the lining of your nose and sinuses. A saltwater flush of your airway with a Neti pot removes the allergy-producing pollen stuck there.
- Stinging nettles - This is a common weed in some parts of the U.S. It inhibits your body's ability to produce histamine. You can find this in capsule form at a supplement store, or you can make a tea from the natural form.