We are well known for our high rates of allergies here in the southern region of Canada. Although the environment plays a huge role in seasonal allergies, so do our genetics, our food choices, and our overall immune health.
Prevention is Key, therefore supporting our immune system prior to spring and fall weather will help decrease our symptoms of allergies. Since a large amount of our immune system lies in our gut, treatments typically include nutritional recommendations, supplementation, and possibly acupuncture.
Allergic rhinitis symptoms are similar throughout the year, but the cause depends on the season:
- Spring Type~allergens are often tree pollens
- Summer Type~allergens are often grass pollens
- Fall Type~allergens are often weed pollens (especially ragweed)
- Perennial~without regard to season & usually due to fungus spores, dust containing insect feces & proteins and animal dander (ew!)
Some Natural-care tips:
Botanical Medicine and Targeted Nutrients
- -Vitamin C, which is contained in dark and lightly colored fruits and vegetables, can help prevent the release of histamine from the cells which line the mucous membranes of your upper respiratory tract.
- -Quercetin ~ a bioflavanoid, works with vitamin C to decrease histamine’s effects on your mucous membranes by helping prevent its secretion from mast cells.
- -Euphrasia officinalis (Eyebright) ~has been used to effectively treat the symptoms of hay fever – especially the congestion and watery eyes.
The catechins found in Green tea and lipophilic extracts of Nettle tea have an antiinflammatory effects, helping to alleviate the symptoms of springtime allergies when 1-2 cups are consumed daily.
Lemon oil is energizing and may help clear your sinuses and reduce congestion, bringing instant relief. Use in a diffuser or as a room spray.
Treatment with acupuncture varies for each person and what their allergy experience has been. The relief is often immediate and the effect lasting temporarily to complete remission. Insertion of points around the nose, wrists and hands is common. It's quite a relaxing experience, you will be given around 20minutes to practice mindfulness breathing exercises during acupuncture is a peaceful environment.
Avoid Damp foods and high histamine foods for allergy season.
What you eat can actually decrease the amount of phlegm and congestion in your sinuses. This is because the spleen is the digestive organ in Chinese Medicine physiology and the Spleen dislikes cold and damp and too much sweet as these foods tend to increase mucous buildup. There are also foods that either contain a high amount of histamine, or produce a lot if histamine in the body. Together we can work on identifying which foods you commonly consume may be increasing the histamine response, or adding dampness.