It’s that season again—autumn—when the allergens reach peak level wreaking havoc with people’s allergy symptoms across the country. But, there’s good news, you can use some natural healing modalities and supplements to help manage allergies, without having to take prescription medication. Of course, as with any type of medical treatment, always consult with your health care provider, before changing your medication regime—even if it’s over the counter MEDs or supplements.
What Causes Allergies?
Before we get into the meat and potatoes about natural treatment for allergy symptoms, it’s important to understand just what causes allergies.
According to the Mayo Clinic, “allergies occur when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance — such as pollen, bee venom or pet dander — or a food that doesn’t cause a reaction in most people.” Once your immune system is triggered, substances in the body, known as antibodies, are activated. When your body is exposed to the allergens, the immune system reacts—resulting in symptoms commonly experienced including:
- reddened, inflamed skin or hives
- inflammation of sinuses, and airways
- reddened, watery eyes
- reaction in the digestive system
Depending on the severity of the allergic reaction, a person can experience mild sinusitis (runny nose and sinus inflammation), or even life-threatening anaphylaxis (a condition that can result in constriction of the airway, a weak, rapid pulse, low blood pressure and dizziness or fainting).
Common Fall Allergy Culprit
In the autumn, ragweed is a common culprit, when it comes to the cause of allergic symptoms. In fact, according to WebMD, 75% of people with spring allergies are also allergic to ragweed.
Once a person is exposed to the allergen (the substance that triggers an allergic reaction), the immune system takes over, reacting to the perceived threats accordingly, and launching an attack on the invaders—in this instance, the ragweed.
Natural Allergy Treatment
There are a few things that can be done to lessen the severity of an allergic reaction—naturally. Healing and strengthening the immune system with supplements and keeping the air as free of allergens as possible can help.
Tip #1. To keep your sleeping environment allergen free, consider the use of air filtration system with a HEPPA filter. The HEPPA filter keeps out very small particles and has been found to be effective in lowering the concentration of dust, pollen, mold and other airborne allergens. You can use a HEPPA filter in your furnace and help control the level of allergens in the home, and/or use a portable air filtration system such as: The Germ Guardian found on Amazon.
Tip #2. Strengthen the gut (the origin of the body’s immune system), by eating fermented foods and taking supplements to build gut health, will help to minimize symptoms of allergies. When considering probiotics, Vitamin D, or other supplements that strengthen the immune system, be sure to select a pharmaceutical grade supplement, to ensure the optimal level of potency and purity.
Tip #3. Avoid substances that weaken the immune system in the gut, such as sugar, chlorinated water and fluoride (in toothpaste or in tap water). Drinking distilled water instead of tap water and avoiding sugar will help strengthen the body’s immune system, minimizing allergic symptoms.
Tip #4. Get plenty of sleep each night to strengthen the immune system—at least 8 hours is recommended.
Tip # 5. Avoid taking antibiotics and vaccinations, unless necessary. There are times when it’s important to take antibiotics, or to get vaccinated, but overuse, can weaken the immune system, making it hyper- sensitive.
Tip #6. Use natural cleaning products and avoid all products (such as shampoos and lotions) that have harsh chemicals. These unnatural chemicals have toxins that lend themselves to weakening the immune system–which can worsen allergy symptoms.
There are many aspects of long-term health, such as lowering allergic symptoms, which people who plan to live past 100 well can manage on their own. But, be aware that there are always times when we need to consult with the professionals. If your allergy symptoms are severe, be sure to consult with your physician. It’s great to be able to find a natural treatment for optimal health, but, knowing when to ask for help is a vital tool for overall health and longevity.