It’s springtime and with the beautiful blooms and new growth many of us experience allergies. Allergies can show up as a runny nose, red itchy eyes, cough, headache, or facial pressure and they can affect concentration, energy levels, and sleep.
Allergies are a hypersensitivity reaction involving the Th2 immune response and immunoglobulin E (IgE), resulting in release of histamine from mast cells along with mucus production. Below are some simple steps to reduce allergies.
- Change clothes and shower when come home to remove pollen
- Take shoes off in the house
- Wash bedding, including pillow cases, weekly
- Put pillows in dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill dust mites
- Vacuum weekly and wash drapes and furniture covers (unzip cushion cases of couch)
- Run an air filter in bedroom at night, change filters regularly
- Send support to your immune system by avoiding sugar and known food sensitivities
- Vitamin C through supplements or foods (citrus, bell peppers, strawberries, kiwi, broccoli, tomato)
- Raw local honey
- Quercetin – a plant flavonoid, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects
- Nettle – freeze dried and encapsulated, inhibits key inflammatory pathways that cause allergy symptoms, works very well for 50% of people
- Break up mucus by drinking more water and with n-acetyl cysteine (NAC), a mucolytic that breaks disulfide bonds
- Nasal irrigation – can open a probiotic capsule and add to filtered boiled water
- Herbal eye wash – steep 1 TB dried Euphrasia
All of the small things we do on a daily basis add up to reduce allergy symptoms!
Citation: Roschek B Jr, Fink RC, McMichael M, Alberte RS. Nettle extract (Urtica dioica) affects key receptors and enzymes associated with allergic rhinitis. Phytother Res. 2009 Jul;23(7):920-6. doi: 10.1002/ptr.2763. PMID: 19140159.