April showers bring… May allergies. Spring is my favorite season by far, but unfortunately the joy I find in blooming flowers and budding trees is marred by the runny noses, burning eyes, and other symptoms that come with it. Luckily these symptoms can be managed with natural resources and minor lifestyle changes. Be sure to check in with your primary care physicians before starting new health routines to ensure your symptoms aren’t due to something more serious.
Many of us have seasonal allergies triggered by pollen. While it might seem counterintuitive, ingesting some of that pollen can actually help our bodies build a resistance. Taking a teaspoon of sweet honey daily, year round, can help you to do just that. Make sure it’s locally harvested honey, as you want to gain a tolerance to the pollen in your area. Bonus: taking honey by itself or mixed into tea will help soothe a sore throat.
Some also believe that eating farm-fresh local produce is an excellent way to ingest small amounts of tolerance-building pollen. Plus, eating local produce is great for your community’s economy, supports farmers, and is deliciously nutritious!
There are many benefits to drinking hot tea. Herbs such as mint, eucalyptus, and ginger have invigorating spice-like qualities that aid in clearing out sinuses and soothing the throat. Stinging nettle is an herb believed to have antihistamine properties, which can help reduce allergy symptoms. And any hot tea will feel good on a throat that’s sore!
Eucalyptus is known to help clear sinuses and nasal passages. Keep a rollerball of this essential oil in your pocket or car to apply to your neck, behind your ears, and on your wrists to help keep your chest and nasal passages clear and soothed.
Rinse It Out
Another great way to clear out sinuses and nasal passageways is a neti pot. A neti pot uses distilled water (or waterthat has been boiled and cooled) shaken with a mineral salt blend to flush out the nasal canals. It might feel strange at first, but this helpful tool can rinse away allergens and bacteria, thin out mucus, and cut down on post-nasal drip. Some specialists suggest doing this daily, before bed, to rid yourself of the day’s allergens.
We all love spending time in the great outdoors each spring, and each time you re-enter your home, you bring small bits of the outside with you. Pollen particles land on your clothing and skin, and can be transferred to your furniture. It can be helpful to wash your hands immediately, and even take a washcloth to your face and hair. If you’re a morning person, consider switching to evening showers to wash away the pollen of the day before you hit the hay.