If you have allergies, you may suffer from a stuffy and/or runny nose, sneezing, itchy skin and eyes, and/or red, watery eyes. Needless to say, it can be very uncomfortable. These symptoms occur because, in the presence of an allergen, the immune system releases chemicals called histamines to fight what it perceives as an invader. Home remedies for allergies can treat all of the above mentioned symptoms.
Allergies – Diet
- Drink lots of water to thin secretions and ease expectoration.
- If you have respiratory allergies, you may be allergic to certain foods. In addition to dairy products and wheat, common culprits include eggs, chocolate, nuts, seafood, and citrus fruits and juices. Try eliminating one of these foods for two weeks and watch for an improvement. Use an elimination or rotation diet to discover and work with food allergies.
- Try eliminating dairy foods from your diet. Dairy foods can thicken mucus and stimulate an increase in mucus production. If your allergies are seasonal, it may also be helpful to avoid whole wheat during the allergy season; many allergy sufferers are sensitive to wheat.
- Cut out cooked fats and oils. When your body is under any type of stress, including the stress of an allergic reaction, the digestive system is not as strong as usual, and fats—which are difficult to digest at the best of times—can put a strain on the digestive system. Also, undigested fats contribute to mucus production and foster a toxic internal environment.
Skin allergies are reactions of the body’s natural immune system against certain substances that may come into direct external contact with the skin or may have entered the system through food, water or air. Pollen, dust, smoke and dander are among the most common substances that cause allergies. Excessive dryness of the skin caused by prolonged exposure to sunlight also makes it prone to allergies. Sudden changes in weather may sometimes trigger skin allergies too. Contact with harmful chemicals present in certain detergents and soaps may also irritate the skin. It is advisable, therefore, to keep the use of cosmetic products to a minimum if you are prone to skin allergies, as they contain strong chemicals that might cause irritation to the skin.
Rather than spending a fortune for a flawless and glowing skin, try the following home remedies for skin allergies.
- Sandalwood, when mixed with lime juice acts as a soothing agent in case of skin allergies.
- Lemon juice is also useful in its mixture with coconut oil.
- Lemon juice and poppy seeds are also effective in treating the itch and removing the redness of the area.
- Since vitamin C is a very good remedy for skin allergy, an adequate amount must be taken to curb the disease.
- Start by boiling the fruit only of one grapefruit and one lemon (remove all the peel) in one cup of water for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, cool and then add 1 tablespoon of raw honey. Drink as needed for pollen allergy relief.
- For a steam inhalation therapy, fill a metal bowl with hot water. Add 2 drops of eucalyptus oil and stir. Drape a towel over your head and then bend over the bowl and breathe in the vapors to loosen congestion and relieve the pressure on the sinuses. Warning: Do not use this method if you are taking homeopathic remedies also for relief. Eucalyptus oil will negate the effectiveness of homeopathic remedies. You can do a water only bath without the oil for a lesser amount of relief.
- Increase your intake of all omega 3 fatty acids in your diet consistently. Diets high in omega 3’s aid your immune system which actually gives you better immunity to seasonal allergies, thus reducing the severity of a seasonal outbreak.
- Familiarize yourself with food families. Many times if you are allergic to tree pollen, you may also have to avoid apples, cherries, peaches, pears, carrots, celery, apricots, kiwi and nuts until your symptoms clear up. For a ragweed sensitivity, avoiding bananas, melons, zucchini and cucumbers will give better relief.
- Get in the habit of changing your furnace filters and air conditioner filters every single month, all year long, but especially the three months after high pollen seasons. Ragweed pollen especially becomes trapped in those filters as it is processed through the air into your heating and cooling units and ends up being pumped right back into your home for months after ragweed season. Thus, in essence, you are extending the season by many months just because of a dirty filter.
- Have a friend, a neighbor or a relative rake up and remove all those fallen leaves in your yard. Piles of leaves are a breeding ground for mold. The longer they sit there, the longer your allergy symptoms will last.
- Mix up 2 teaspoons of raw apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon of raw honey (or stevia) into 6 oz of water and drink this 3 times daily for the next 5 days. The raw vinegar will break up the mucus to allow easier flow, thus relieving sinus pressure. Do not substitute regular bottled vinegar as you will not get the same results.
- Every time you enter your home, remove your shoes at the door. Head straight for the shower, remove and wash your clothes and you must take a shower. Each time you walk in the door from outside you are a carrier of high pollen counts which you are carrying into your home.
- Avoid most alcohols, beer and wines during allergy season. Sulfites in them will raise your congestion levels and this aggravates seasonal allergies to even greater symptoms.
- Plant the exterior of your home predominantly with flowers, avoiding trees and bushes. Flowers rarely aggravate pollen allergies for most people.
- Avoid carpeting in your home, especially the kitchen, bath and bedroom. All high traffic areas should be only hardwood floors or laminated flooring.
- If you like them, add plenty of spicy foods to your daily diet Adding hot peppers, horseradish etc. keeps the mucous flowing naturally, thus preventing a lot of sinus pressure.
- Try to add many of the following to your daily diet all year long to aid in allergen control. Citrus fruits, kale, broccoli, onions and garlic plus fresh parsley all have high concentrations of Vitamin C or carotenoids. The plant kingdom also gives us butterbur, stinging nettle and elderberries which all reduce inflammation and combat allergy symptoms. Work with a licensed practitioner at first to confirm dosages and the best treatment options for your allergens.