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Natural Allergy Remedies
- When our mucous membranes meet an allergen, our cells release histamines. These histamines create allergy symptoms to help rid our body of the allergen
- Some natural remedies include quercitin which is found in red wine, onions and other food
- For congestion, very hot foods and spices, like cayenne pepper are good choices
More than 35 million Americans deal with seasonal allergies every year. Millions of others cope with allergic reactions to animal dander and other environmental problems every single day. While over-the-counter medications are currently the number one treatment used by sufferers, natural allergy remedies are becoming increasingly popular.
The Allergic Reaction Explained
To understand how any non-natural or natural allergy remedies work, you need to first understand what causes that allergic reaction. Basically, when an allergen comes into contact with the mucous membranes inside our nasal passages, this sends our mast cells – immune system cells located within those membranes – into action. To drive out the allergen, the cells release histamine. Histamine instigates those allergy symptoms, of course not to make us miserable, but to rid our bodies of the allergen.
Preventative Natural Allergy Remedies
One way to deal with allergies is to prevent them from getting started in the first place. Neti pots have long been used in India, and now more people are recognizing their benefits in the Western world. Basically, these pots are used to rinse out the sinuses by keeping passages free of allergens. Using the pot twice a day is a good idea. To do it, you need to combine non-iodized salt with lukewarm water to clean out the nostrils.
You can also take quercetin supplements to prevent your mast cells from releasing histamine. Quercetin, which is an antioxidant found primarily in plants, can be found naturally in onions, citrus fruit, parsley, and other foods. Red wine is also a good natural source of this compound.
Dealing with the Symptoms
If you’re looking for natural allergy remedies that will help you deal with the consequences of those invading allergens, one possibility is an herb found naturally in England. The herb is known as butterbur. According to the British Medical Journal, taking butterbur tablets four times a day will be just as effective as taking antihistamine drugs in treating hay fever sufferers.
Goldenseal is another potent herb that can be used as a natural allergy remedy. If you purchase the tonic version of goldenseal, you can add it to a saline solution and use it as a nasal spray. The combination of the herb and the saline helps remove allergens from the mucous.
Because red, itchy eyes is one of the most common symptoms associated with allergic reactions, Swiss sufferers frequently use natural allergy remedies to treat this problem as well. The most common treatment is a type of eye drops that includes aphis, euphrasia, and sabadilla. If you’re wondering if the concoction works, a small scale study of 50 sufferers at Harvard found that it did work and also did not produce any side effects.
Natural allergy remedies are found in the kitchen, too. Spicy foods, for example, are a great way to thin out mucous, which can make congestion less difficult. If you’ve ever eaten very hot food, you may have felt that your nasal passages were clearer. Spices such as cayenne peppers and ginger are good choices.
You may also want to be careful about what you are eating. Ragweed allergies, for example, can be made worse if you eat bananas, cucumbers, or melons. Taking chamomile or Echinacea can also worsen your symptoms.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
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