Do you suffer from seasonal allergies? Do fresh cut grass and spring flowers send you running indoors? Don’t worry, you’re not alone - millions of people are affected by pollen every year. But this doesn’t mean that you have to suffer.
Seasonal allergies are caused by an incorrect immune response. When allergy sufferers are exposed to allergens (that their body has already become sensitized too) they release histamine. Histamine then causes the typical allergy symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, itchy nose, scratchy throat, foggy brain & headaches.
To decrease these symptoms the first thing most people do is reach for over-the-counter allergy medication. These pills work because they are antihistamines - they neutralize histamine. They definitely work, but they don’t treat the problem they just cover up the symptoms. They can also cause side-effects like drowsiness, impaired performance, restlessness, abdominal distress, heart palpitations, and insomnia.
Instead of covering up the problem with medications, naturopathic medicine can help you to correct the root cause of your allergies. This usually involves strengthening the immune system and decreasing the release of histamine.
Strengthening the Immune System
Decrease Stress - this includes physical, mental & emotional stress. Combatting stress requires a lot of energy. This means other body systems, like the immune system, don’t have enough energy to keep functioning optimally. Try deep breathing and making time for self care.
Improve Sleep - when we sleep our body recovers from the day and repairs damaged areas. This includes replenishing the immune system with healthy cells. Try prioritizing sleep by getting into bed 30 minutes earlier than usual.
Remove reactive foods - there are a number of foods that commonly trigger immune reactions. Eliminating these foods will decrease the burden on your immune system and help it to work more effectively. These foods include: alcohol, caffeine, dairy, chocolate, peanuts, sugar, wheat, citrus, and food preservatives.
Targeted Supplements - these include probiotics, vitamin A, vitamin C & zinc.
Tip: those with a ragweed allergy may also react to foods such as cucumbers, melons, zucchini, sunflower seeds, bananas & chamomile tea. Eliminating these foods during allergy season may help decrease symptoms.
Decreasing Histamine Release
Remove Triggers - this one is obvious; remove identified allergens from your home (ie. those flowers that look so pretty but make you hurt so bad) and avoid allergens in the environment as much as possible. Take a shower after you have spent an extended period of time outside to eliminate any allergens on your skin.
Targeted Supplements - these include bioflavonoids and herbs like nettle and eyebright
The ultimate goal is to treat the root cause of the problem. If this is fixed there will be no resulting symptoms. However, symptom management is important for the cases in which we catch the allergies too late.
Excess mucus - diet changes can be really helpful for reducing mucus. Eliminate foods that increase mucus, like dairy, and increase foods that decrease mucus, like spicy foods (ie. ginger, cinnamon, cayenne pepper).
Congestion - this one presents in some people as sinus pain and other people as headaches. Both are treated phenomenally by acupuncture and at-home acupressure. Benefits are often felt as soon as the needles are inserted.
Scratchy throat - hydration is key for this. Increase water intake to 3L per day. Demulcents - things that soothe & increase hydration - can also be used. These are things like chia seeds, aloe, slippery elm & marshmallow root.
If you’re ready to action on your allergies but don’t know where to start our comprehensive seasonal allergy program is for you. This program can be used to prevent allergy symptoms from happening and is also great for decreasing symptoms that have flared, and preventing more from happening.
Your 1 hour session will include everything you need to tackle your seasonal allergies.
1 x Initial Naturopathic Consultation
1 x Targeted Nutritional Supplement
1 x Allergy Relief Tea
1 x Allergy Support Acupuncture (done during initial consultation)*
Handout with at-home acupressure points and other allergy relieving tips
Total cost is $250
*Note: additional allergy support acupuncture sessions can be scheduled (at additional cost)