Friday

Fighting Allergies...Naturally (Part 2)

What if there was no allergic rhinitis (hay fever)? 

What would your life be like without this condition?

Did you know that at least 20% of the population in North America are affected by this condition each year?

Once, long ago, it was rare to find someone with seasonal affected allergies...

(Here's part 1 in case you missed it)



Steps to allergy relief The first step toward getting relief from allergic reactions (or overreactions) is to find the causes of your allergy and then make every effort to avoid them. However, even under the most ideal scenarios, this can be nearly impossible.

Multiple allergens may have the potential to affect a person in the same manner (sneezing, coughing, itchiness, etc). You could literally be hunting down allergens for months to try isolating a single catalyst. One approach is to tackle the allergens simultaneously by using inhibitors to stop the symptoms. This would require the use of either physician-prescribed or OTC (over the counter) medications.

There are many drugs on the market that all claim to relieve allergy symptoms. Many have been proven to be quite effective against allergic reactions. At the same time, most medications usually produce side effects that need to be considered. Combined with ever-increasing pollution levels, allergies can become more difficult to fight based on the seasons.  

Take allergy shots for example. They may work for one season, but not for the next. This may be due to a combination of naturally recurring environmental allergens and chemically-induced reactions. Some allergy shots actually contain allergy-causing agents like eggs in them!


Side Effects

These side effects can range from mild (drowsiness) to serious (internal organ damage). Unfortunately, these treatments also typically fail to address the underlying causes of the allergic reaction(s).

Take food for example. The type of food you like to indulge in may be the underlying cause of your mild to severe allergic symptoms....
Photo Credit:Tavallai (flickr)


If you have mild to severe allergy reactions you may notice your symptoms becoming more active after eating some of your favorite junk foods or snacks. The reason is because the ingredients may contain the very components that aggravate your condition. In some cases, these foods are prepared in factories or plants where allergens are most prevalent.

Nature's Way

There is hope for those of us desperate to find a cure for allergy symptoms in the form of natural remedies which have been proven effective against allergies.

Take note:
Nettle (Urtica dioica)
Nettle is a well-known herb rich in vitamins like A and C. You'll also find nutrients like iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, and chlorophyll.



Marshmallow (Althaea officianalis)


Marshmallow is soothing to all parts of the body it comes in contact with. It contains large amounts of vitamin A, calcium, zinc and also contains some iron, sodium, iodine, and B-complex.


Acerola Cherry (Mapighia punicifolia) 
Acerola Cherry is excellent as an anti-histamine and has one of nature's highest natural content of Vitamin C.




Red Onion (Allium cepa)

Red Onions contain quercitin, a natural antihistamine, which helps those with allergies and breathing problems. 




Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Meet the ultimate decongestant. Ginger stimulates circulation and helps clear up congestion in your lungs and sinuses. To relieve persistent coughing, drink hot ginger tea or hot water with ginger and honey. 

Foods Eat a rainbow. Just kidding....A daily balanced diet of fresh foods of the following colors: red, green, purple, yellow and orange eaten every day may help strengthen your immune system. In some far eastern cultures, it's believed that you should eat at least 30 different types of foods a day to stay healthy. This, of course, is not always feasible for everyone.

However, if you incorporate at least half of these colors into your diet you may notice a marked improvement in your overall health. Give it a try. Before I wrap up here I wanted to give you a few more "power foods" that have been noted for their ability to fight off allergic reactions: Sweet potatoes, green onions, leeks, radishes, legumes, seaweed, and daikon (Asian radish that is effective against itchy skin due to allergies). You could spend all day trying to eat all these veggies in one form or another (raw is always best if the vegetable is edible in that form).
I found that the easiest way to get the benefits of these foods is to put them all together in a stew or soup. So there you have it, a few ways to help you fight the effects of allergens and to stabilize and strengthen your immune system.

Did I miss anything? If I did, let me know in the comments below...







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