Seasonal Allergies & Natural Relief

Nature’s best antihistamines are right under your nose. (couldn’t resist) Studying at Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) has taught me many holistic remedies and alternative therapies to conventional medicine. This weekend I attended a conference in NYC sponsored by IIN. Here I learned from the most notable doctors and scientist. One take away was how to alleviate the sneezing, itchy watery eyes, sinus pressure and congestion with seasonal allergies. 

My guru Dr. Andrew Weil gave an inspiring talk about “Stinging Nettles.” Well ,they are not as bad as you think. He discovered them after suffering from seasonal allergies as a child and enduring the miserable side effects of pharmaceuticals. So, despite a little pain when we brush up against this flowering plant, it can treat a list of ailments including hay fever. Its anti-inflammatory qualities affect key receptors and enzymes in allergic reactions preventing hay fever symptoms. Find Stinging Nettles in Nettle Tea, cooked nettle leaves added to smoothies and even in the tablet form. Many health food stores have experts on hand to point you in the right direction.

Next is good old Vitamin C. (500-1000mg) We can enjoy fresh fruits for the most natural remedy or in the tablet form from your local pharmacy or health food market. Fruits and vegetables highest in Vitamin C, according to the National Institute of Health, are red peppers and oranges. More Vitamin C is available when these foods are consumed raw. Next would be kiwi fruit and green peppers. Then broccoli, brussel sprouts, cantaloupe and strawberries. Now that sounds delightful. Don’t forget to eat seasonally and locally friends! My recipe section has wonderful meal ideas. From shaved brussel sprouts to a red pepper frittata. All in just five minutes! Check it out on my resources tab. 

Lastly, I will mention local honey. Some scientist believes when a person eats local honey, they are ingesting local pollen. Thus, over time become less sensitive to pollen. According to some allergist, you get a tiny dose of something your allergic to and thus less reactive to it. Then over time you build up immunity to that agent. But you do not need to be a bee keeper to get local honey. The best way is to visit your local farmers market. They are everywhere. My favorite app is http://www.farmstandapp.com

Mike McKenna