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Treating Allergies Naturally

Treating Allergies Naturally
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BY KITT WALSH

Spring is here and soon my allergies are going to have a field day. Medication, even over-the-counter, is expensive, so I been searching for natural alternatives. Here’s what I found:

Start from the inside out: Strengthen your immune system, with natural immunity boosters and antihistamines like:

Vitamin C with Quercitin (500 mg daily)

Vitamin C w/bioflavonoids (5000 mg daily)

Vitamin B5 (up to 1000 mg 2 times daily)

CoQ10 (60 mg 3 times daily)

Vitamin A (10,000 IU 2 times daily)

Omega-3 Fatty Acids (1000 mg daily)

Or go herbal:

Licorice Root produces hormones that fight allergies. Drink hot licorice root tea 3 times daily.

Astragalus, Capsicum and Oregano Oil capsules (available in health food stores) are good for fighting histamines in your blood. Follow the label directions.

Watch what you eat: Essential fatty acids from organic flax seed or hemp seed oil can help reduce seasonal allergies. Avoid dairy (which causes mucus) and pack your plate with anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant foods like grapes, tomatoes, oranges, nuts and apples. To help keep airways clear, add a dash of horseradish, chili peppers or hot mustard to your food.

Wash your body and house: Scrub your eyelashes nightly with baby shampoo and a hot rag, keeping pollen out of your eyes. Clean your house with non-toxic natural cleaning products. Buy a vacuum with a HEPA filter and use it often or better still, install hardwood or cork flooring. Wear a mask when you dust or vacuum and cover your hair. Shower and change clothes after gardening or cleaning.

Clear the air: Get an air purification system that has UV & negative ion filter and a dehumidifier to get rid of mold and mildew in your home

Sleep clean: Get an allergy mattress cover and wash your organic sheets in hot water once a week to kill dust mites. You may want to wash your pillowcases more often.

Buy a Neti pot: This little Aladdin’s lamp actually washes the pollen grains right out of your sinuses and was a lifesaver for my asthmatic son. Mix a quarter to a half-teaspoon of noniodized table salt into a cup of lukewarm water and pour it into the pot. Lean over a sink, cock your head to one side and put the spout of the neti into one of your nostrils, letting it drain out the other. Repeat for the other side. Blow to clear the nostril and use twice a day during allergy season.

Hit the beach (or lake): Pollen levels are lower around bodies of water. Or bring some of the sea to you by using salt lamps in your office, which may help some of your symptoms.

Nix the window fans: They pull pollen into a room. Also keep your care windows closed when you drive. Use the AC instead.

Sublingual immunotherapy: This daily therapy is very popular in Europe. Patients put drops of a very small dose of the allergen (initially a 1:1,000 dilution) under the tongue for two minutes, then swallow it. Since it is very allergen-specific, if you know exactly what you are allergic to, SLIT may be right for you. Bear in mind, SLIT hasn’t been approved by the FDA for use in this country, so check with your insurance provider before considering treatment. And, as will all of the above supplements and treatments, check with your healthcare practitioner before undertaking anything,

A word of caution: I know how tempting it is, especially in the middle of the night when you can’t sleep because of nasal congestion, to reach for the off-the-shelf nasal decongestant spray. Instant relief. But be aware, your nose gets used to the stuff and soon won’t unclog without it—an expensive and dangerous habit. Resist the temptation and try Breathe Right or other nasal strips or some of the suggestions above first.

 

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Kitt Walsh owns a web content company, Behind Blogs (http://www.behindblogs.com), is a regular contributor to CNN Money, a public speaker on Social Media, a book editor and ghostwriter, and freelances as a feature writer, editor and marketing consultant for magazines, newspapers and private clients around the world.