How To Protect Yourself Naturally During Allergy Season
Updated: Apr 11, 2022
- Dr. Sara Johnson, D.C.
What if I told you that you don't have to suffer from seasonal allergies every year? Would you believe me if I told you that you can have a normal, healthy response to pollen and environmental irritants - without having to use an OTC medication to treat congestion and irritation? If you are interested in implementing natural remedies and healing from the inside out, this is the blog post for you. By strengthening and maintaining a normal histamine response, you can enjoy your Spring days with ease and feel your best during pollen season.
Here are ways to protect yourself during allergy season - to keep you bright-eyed and breathing easy.
#1 - Raw local honey.
Raw local honey is truly a healing substance in every way possible, but it is especially helpful for seasonal allergies. The important aspect to remember is that the honey needs to say raw on the label. Raw honey contains all the vitamins and enzymes needed to protect yourself from a histamine response - which is something you don't get from honey that is heated and pasteurized. The benefit of using local honey is that it contains small doses of the pollen in your area, which will help strengthen your immune system over time. Raw local honey is also packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that nourish your body from the inside out. It is best to consume a spoonful of honey daily, and the trick is to start preparing early for allergy season during the Fall or Winter months.
P.S. My favorite raw local honey in Eastern Washington is Chase Honey Company from Newman Lake. Absolutely DELICIOUS!
*Infants under one year of age should not consume honey of any kind.
#2 - Nettle Leaf.
Nettle leaf is a natural anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory herb that is local to the Pacific Northwest. It helps clear the body of toxins, and contains flavanoids that help surpress the histamine response, thereby reducing allergy symptoms. Nettle leaf contains a plethora of vitamins and minerals, while also supporting healthy immune function. It helps the body build resistence to pollen and environmental pollutants, and is a great substitute for allergy medication - without the drowsiness!
Nettle leaf can be taken in various forms - tablet, tincture, or nettle tea. You can even make nettle pesto or add it to soup!
#3 - Ginger root.
Ginger root helps to improve liver detoxification and is a natural anti-histamine. A 2015 study found that patients with hay fever who received ginger capsules had a significant reduction in IgE (antibody) levels after just one month of treatment (compared to a placebo control group). After 2 months of treatment, 62% of patients treated with ginger had a reduction in sneezing, 83% saw a reduction in sinusitis, and 79% has relief from nasal itching.
The key is to consume ginger tea consistently. To make ginger tea, bring fresh ginger slices to boil in a pot of filtered water. Once boiling, lower the heat and cover – let simmer for 15 minutes to get a strong brew!
#4 - Magnesium.
Magnesium is one of the most important minerals that our bodies need, but unfortunately most people are severely deficient. Magnesium is required for phase II liver detoxification, which is crucial for excreting histamine! Histamines are released by your body in response to allergens - they cause allergy symptoms and must exit the body through the liver's pathways.
Magnesium is a calming mineral, so it is best to have magnesium in the evenings. Epsom salt baths are a great way to absorb magnesium through the skin, or a high-quality whole food magnesium supplement.
#5 - Grounding.
Grounding is a simple, but effective way to counter inflammation. Grounding (or earthing) is when you connect your body directly with the Earth. Examples are walking barefoot in the grass, sitting on the beach etc. By being in direct contact, you're making an electrical connection with Earth's energies and it helps realign your own electrical energy. Earth's negative charges help to neutralize free radicals in the body and reduce chronic inflammation. Take time daily to connect with nature's healing energy.
#6 - Chiropractic Adjustments.
Did you know that there is a direct connection between the nervous system and the immune system? When your chiropractor regularly adjusts you and removes interference in the body, that will allow your immune system to work optimally. When your immune system is fully functioning, it will allow you to stay well and be better able to fight the invasion of foreign substances (pollen, dust, etc.). Get adjusted on a weekly basis, so your immune system stays strong and resilient during allergy season (and all year round!).
All in all -
Take care of yourself and start preparing for allergy season as early as Fall or Winter. With a combination of raw local honey, nettle leaf tea, ginger root tea, magnesium, grounding practices, and chiropractic adjustments - your body will be well equipped to handle allergy season.