When discussing “allergy”, we should be clear about the exact type of unpleasant reaction we are talking about.
FOOD REACTIONS: The most well-known true allergy is probably the now infamous peanut allergy. (An article in our Library has ideas about that.) There are also classic allergies to other foods such as tree nuts, strawberries and shellfish. Those can be helped with immunotherapy like that discussed in the article about peanut allergy.
A great many other reactions to food are related to food sensitivities which can cause headache and mimic many diseases. Food sensitivities and a simple home test for them are discussed in this Library article. Reactions such as gas and bloating can also be caused by difficulty digesting a food. (Lactose intolerance is an example of that and Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics helps with that as well as food sensitivities and seasonal allergies.)
SEASONAL ALLERGY: Seasonal allergies are usually to pollen mostly released from trees and weeds. They cause a great many folks suffer stuffy noses, sinus pressure, coughing, sore throat and irritated eyes.
REMEDIES for seasonal allergies:
- Bee Pollen is a folk remedy that I have found very effective if used correctly: Buy LOCAL bee pollen as loose granules available from a health food store or farmer’s market. It is crucial to begin with only ONE single granule to make sure you aren’t super sensitive to pollen. The next day eat TWO granules. Then continue doubling the number of granules each day until you are taking a teaspoonful. (Note that the grains are different colors indicating different sources, so ideally take a variety) Besides imitating the gradual buildup of tolerance that we gain from allergy shots, pollen is quite nutritious.
- Vitamin C has great antihistamine properties without the unpleasant rebound effect often seen with antihistamine drugs. Environmental medicine doctors keep intravenous Vitamin C handy to use as a powerful antihistamine in case a patient has a bad reaction during allergy testing. Vitamin C obviously has many other benefits like helping the immune system fend off opportunistic infections that can arise when there is a lot of mucous and inflammation. 500 mg seems to be a minimum daily dose. However, depending on a person’s chemistry and diet, the optimum dose might be 10 times that or even more—especially during illness or an allergy attack. If you experience a loose stool, reduce the dose.
- Quercetin is well known for its help with allergies as well as balancing immune reaction in other ways.
- Stinging Nettles is a plant that hurts if your skin brushes up against in the woods. But, as an herb, it has a long-held reputation for helping calm allergic reactions. Some modern science confirms how it works.
- Combination. This product combines the 3 previous supplements and I found it useful in the past under its previous name, “Allergy Support”.
- Vitamin D. Vitamin D is good for so many things, I’m not surprised to find that it has been shown to be useful for allergies.
- Homeopathy. The homeopathic method is very effective because it is so specific. Dr. Frank King has wisely created seasonal allergy remedies based on the threat in the area where you live.
- Negative ions. A negative ion generator causes pollen and other allergens to drop out of the air. Having one (especially in the bedroom) is helpful. This negative ion generator is what I use because it is small, effective and inexpensive.
- Neti pot. Flushing out the mucous and along with it the irritants seems to help. Read more.
Chronic sinus issues. If the sinuses are stuffy all year, the cause may be that yeast has taken up residence there. This short article has helpful ideas. Taking antibiotics will only make matters worse, but unfortunately, they are often prescribed. Consumption of dairy creates stuffiness for some people. I found this very surprising and free remedy for chronic sinus congestion—Strong humming!
Inflammation–“Adding insult to injury?” It seems that the more inflammation that you have in your body, the more the seasonal allergies will bother you. Therefore, eating a healthy anti-inflammatory diet may help. One example; omega-6 fats from vegetable oils like corn oil are in general pro-inflammatory and omega-3 fats such as from fish are anti-inflammatory.
Other airborne irritants. Reducing other insults may also make it easier for your body to cope with the seasonal attack. Smog and industrial chemicals in the air are toxic to everyone but some people are simply better able to handle them. Allergy to dust mites is very common. Mites are microscopic arthropods (a type of insect) that feast on flakes of human skin and so are at home in the bedroom. This site has a good list of ideas for getting rid of them.