The pharmaceutical industry seems to have devised a drug for every condition from allergies to weight loss. However, people are becoming increasingly aware of the many side effects of prescription drugs. As a result, they have turned to natural remedies.
For those of you struggling with allergies and have symptoms that include constant sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, coughing, and nasal congestion amongst many others, we show you some natural and homemade remedies that you can use to treat common allergies.
- Raw Honey
Did you know that all the pollen carried by bees go into the honey they make? Therefore, when you eat locally produced honey, you give your immune system a natural allergy shot that helps you build up resistance and tolerance to those allergens over time.
Hay fever and related pollen allergies may be minimized by taking honey a month before pollen season starts. Start by taking one tablespoonful of honey after each meal. To further reduce the allergy symptoms, chew a small piece of waxy honeycomb once a day. Honey also has many antibacterial properties which are important in fighting infections.
- Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
This is one of the best natural treatments available for allergies and with zero side effects.
Apple cider vinegar has both antibiotic and antihistamine powers, both extremely useful for sufferers of various allergies.
Apple cider vinegar works by blocking the production and release of histamines and efficiently suppress the allergy symptoms. It works best when it is combined with 1 tablespoon of honey and lemon juice.
Take 3 times a day for your body to build up its defense to fight various allergies. Apple cider vinegar also strengthens the lungs, immune system, improves blood circulation and provides the necessary acids which help in digestion of food.
Turmeric is a bright yellow herb with an active ingredient called curcumin which has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, anti-oxidative and anti-tumor properties. Tumeric also serves as a first line of defense where it works by stabilizing mast cells which mostly line the trachea and intestinal tract
Turmeric also contains cortisone which is a bioflavonoid that strengthens mast cells when consumed frequently. Healthy mast cells have a barrier that keeps foreign materials such as pollen, protein and bacteria out of the blood stream, thus providing resistance to allergens.
- Saline Solution
Saline solution helps to clear sinus problems or if you are having a runny nose. To create your own home-based saline solution, follow these steps:
- Mix a quarter teaspoon of sea salt with a cup of lukewarm water
- Slightly tilt your head and lean over the sink
- Use a teaspoon to pour the saline solution into one of your nose and allow to drain
- Continue pouring until half of the content is used
- Repeat the process with the other nostril
- To clear the nostril, gently blow each nostril on a clean handkerchief
Lemons are packed with vitamin C which functions by breaking down histamines once it starts circulating in the blood.
Lemons also work by preventing histamine from being released through the stabilization of mast cell membranes. Mast cells are the storage unit of histamine and when they rupture, they release histamines which cause the allergic reactions.
Vitamin C in lemons also aid in reduction of inflammation.
- Nettle Leaf
Nettle is the go-to herb for allergies. This herb is believed to have an anti-inflamatory effect where it helps in drying out sinus problems. It works by blocking the production of histamines. A typical dosage to treat allergies is 300mg of freeze dried nettle extract, one to three times a day.
This is a compound found naturally in vegetables such as onions, berries, red wine and grape fruit.
People with allergies benefit immensely from taking products containing high amount of quercetin because it inhibits the release of histamine. It also reduces inflammation and works by stabilizing cell membranes such that they become less reactive to allergens.
Quercetin should be taken a month before allergy season, in between meals with a recommended dosage of 1000mg.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids
People with allergies or asthma need to increase their intake of omega 3 or omega 9 fatty acids, and limit the consumption of omega 6 fatty acids. Foods rich in omega three include nuts, flaxseed oil, fish and olive oil. These foods help prevent and treat chronic allergic reactions by strengthening the immune system, thus making it less prone to suffer from allergic reactions.
Garlic has antibacterial properties that are beneficial in healing allergy symptoms such as runny nose. Raw garlic eaten daily has the abilty to boost immunity to combat allergens effectively.
Butterbur is scientifically known as Petasites Hybrids. It contains petasin and isopetasin as the active ingredients, both of which have anti-inflammatory effects.
These active compounds work by blocking the formation of leukotrienes which cause sneezing, itchy nose, swelling and congestion. They inhibit histamine synthesis thus resulting in mast cell degranulation.
Butterbur is extracted from the roots and leaves of the butterbur shrub, and can also be used to treat symptoms of asthma and migraines.
Peppermint helps to enlarge pores and increase perspiration, in the process eliminating toxins from our body that is causing allergy reactions.
Many people suffering from allergies are turning to acupuncture to release allergy symptoms. Research done by researchers in Germany in 2013: Annals of Internal Medicine showed that when people with allergic reactions were treated with acupuncture, they ended up experiencing less seasonal allergy symptoms and use of antihistamine.
Acupuncture treatment also strengthens the immune system. Other functions of acupuncture include improving mental clarity, treating insomnia, back pain, migraines, weight loss, digestive problems and muscle aches.
Probiotics are helpers of the immune system where they reduce incidences of allergies and calms allergic reaction inflammations.
Foods rich in probiotics include pickles, kimchi, yoghurt, kefir, Sauerkraut and tempeh.
Probiotics have also been known to prevent and treat asthma and eczema in children. They also help in the breakdown and absorption of food including making vitamins required by the body such as vitamin K.