If you live in San Antonio, we all share a common misery, oak pollen is messing with our air quality and our sanity. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to combat Spring allergies with nutrition and natural remedies.
Unfortunately, our local population has the propensity and habit to reach for quick fixes like: decongestants and antihistamines instead of combatting allergies with whole, nutrient dense foods and holistic remedies.
When you choose to take decongestants and antihistamines, they suppress the immune system and only treat the symptoms, not the root cause.
While holistic remedies and a nutrient dense diet may take a little bit longer, in the end, they work with your body and help relieve symptoms long-term. A strong immune system is key to fighting seasonal allergies.
Medications only relieve the symptoms, and often not as well as natural remedies. Start now by removing foods you are sensitive to, eating foods that boost your immune system and incorporating supplements and complementary treatments into your routine.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), allergies can’t generally be prevented, but allergic reactions can be.
Treating your seasonal allergy symptoms requires a holistic approach, one that addresses your diet, lifestyle and natural treatments.
Foods to Avoid During Allergy Season:
- Conventional dairy
- Artificial sweeteners
- Processed foods
- Sunflower seeds
- Bottled citrus juice
Foods that commonly make allergy symptoms worse include:
Alcohol, caffeine, dairy, chocolate, peanuts, sugar, wheat, citrus and chocolate. In addition, many common food preservatives including: sodium bisulfite, potassium bisulfite, sodium sulfite and artificial sweeteners.
There are foods that you should avoid during allergy season. Any foods that you are allergic to, or have sensitivity to, should be avoided. If you’re not sure how far-reaching your food sensitivities are, a food sensitivity test may be in order. If you’re local to San Antonio or Boerne, call Annie’s Apothecary and request their FIT (food inflammation testing) test, learn more about KBMO diagnostics here. I was shocked to discover the foods that caused an allergic reaction in my body!
Foods That Support Your Immune System:
Probiotic-rich foods support a stronger immune system, improve digestion, increase energy levels, and so much more. Probiotic foods to eat during allergy season include:
- sauerkraut or kimchi
- raw cheese
Best Supplements for Allergy Symptoms:
- Spirulina: 1 teaspoon per day
- Quercetin (immune boosting powerhouse): 1,000 milligrams per day
- Butterbur: 500 milligrams per day: Butterbur has traditionally been used to treat bronchitis, excess mucus and asthma.
- Probiotics: 50 billion IU (2–6 capsules) per day: Probiotics modify the intestinal flora in the gut and help boost the immune system, plus they show promise in the treatment and prevention of allergies.
- Vitamin A: 2,000 micrograms per day: Vitamin A boosts the immune system, fights inflammation and has antihistamine properties
- Zinc: 30 milligrams per day: Zinc helps to heal adrenal fatigue caused by chronic stress. As mentioned above, stress worsens the symptoms of seasonal allergies and helps to regulate how your body stores histamine
- Bromelain (a naturally occurring enzyme found in pineapples): 1,000 milligrams per day
- Stinging Nettles: 300–500 milligrams twice per day: Stinging nettle contains antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties that help to reduce the body’s production of symptom causing histamine. If you are taking lithium, sedatives, blood thinning medications, medication for diabetes or high blood pressure, be aware that stinging nettle can cause adverse interactions with these medications.
- CBD Oil: New research suggests that, with both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, CBD could be the answer for both acute and chronic sufferers of seasonal allergies, because CBD works with the endocannabinoid system to help correct whatever is wrong in your body and promote a healthy homeostatic balance. This even goes so far as to open up the sinus passageways and relieve nasal pressure and congestion.
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Young Living Essential Oils — Diffusing Young Living essential oils, including eucalyptus, lavender and peppermint essential oil, helps to open up the nasal passages and lungs, improves circulation and relieves stress. Also, applying lavender and peppermint with a carrier oil to the bottoms of your feet can help ease allergy symptoms & support the immune system from the outside-in.
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Other Lifestyle Tips for Allergy Season:
- Drink Water (Duh?): Drink eight to ten glasses of fresh water each day. If you get dehydrated, any mucus you have will become much more difficult to expel.
- Shower (Should I really have to tell you this?) Pollen and dust left on your skin and in your hair overnight can make your symptoms worse. If you take a bath, add some epsom salts (hello magnesium) with your favorite essential oils like: lavender and eucalyptus for added respiratory support.
- Close it Up: When pollen counts are high, or on dusty days, keep your doors and windows closed to limit exposure.