Ah spring, when the allergy misery begins. Drugs help a little (but the side effects are frustrating.) Is there natural relief for spring allergies that’s better and faster than popping pills?
Why essential oils?
These amazing, natural and safe oils don’t just get rid of your symptoms – they work on the root cause.
The cause? Inflammation and a weak immune system.
Common seasonal allergies (aka hay fever and allergic rhinitis,) give you the blocked or runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes and headaches. In severe cases, shortness of breath and life-threatening inflammation.
All allergies begin with an overreacting immune system.
Allergen (commonly pollen, dust and mold) particles trick a weakened immune system into releasing an excess of substances like histamine.
This causes all those symptoms you hate.
In fact, any time your immune system fights something, this process is called inflammation.
If you really want to get started with the right essential oils fast, see a well-trained massage therapist.
They can assess your unique circumstances and recommend the best oils and uses to help you.
A Quick Guide to the Top Essential Oils for Allergies
Place about 5 drops of peppermint oil in a diffuser to unclog your sinuses, get rid of a headache and relieve a scratchy throat.
You can take a drop or 2 of peppermint oil internally, once a day. Put it in water, tea or a smoothie to reduce inflammation.
You can also rub it onto your chest, the back of your neck or temples. Sensitive skin? Dilute the peppermint a bit with jojoba or coconut oil before applying it to your skin.
Eucalyptus oil is great for opening up your airways. It has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.
It works as an expectorant, helping to cleanse your body of toxins and harmful microorganisms acting as allergens.
Eucalyptus oil helps upper respiratory infection too, says a 2011 study.
Diffuse 5 drops of eucalyptus oil, or apply it to your chest and temples. Or, you can boil a cup of water and place 2 drops of oil in the cup. Cover your head with a towel and inhale the vapors over the cup for 5-10 minutes.
Lavender is a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory.
Diffuse 5 drops of lavender oil to stop headaches and other allergy grief. Lavender is also a gentle sleep aid. Gentle…not like those antihistamine pills that knock you unconscious!
Why are these oils so powerful?
For one thing, they’re concentrated. To get one pound of lavender essential oil, it takes 150 pounds of lavender flowers.
Many kinds of skin lotions clog your pores – but essential oils pass directly through your skin to benefit you quickly.
That is, the good kind of essential oils.
Many “essential” oils on the market are synthetic or altered in the laboratory.
Others are labeled “natural” or “pure” but have been overly processed and lack the beneficial compounds in the truly natural and pure oils.
Even “organic” essential oil can fall into this category. It can be raised organically pure but then overly processed.
Not only this, but “certified organic” is only upheld by the FDA in the US. Essential oil comes from plants all around the world.
The term “organic” also is being redefined by big food, beverage and grocery corporations.
Many of these oils can be worthless to your health and some are potentially toxic.
Certified therapeutic grade oil is far better. The oil is naturally collected. (Usually steam-distilled.)
Look for suppliers that meet this standard while adhering to organic principles, like no pesticide and no genetically modified seed.
Many other essential oils can improve your immune system, stop inflammation and curb allergies.
Oils like lemon, Roman chamomile, tea tree, frankincense and basil.
No wonder many kings and queens of the past kept these oils in their medicine cabinet.
And valued them higher than gold.
So says Clifford W. Bassett, MD, vice chairman of the Public Education Committee of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.
Have hay fever? Avoid these foods.
Other foods commonly known to make allergies worse include:
Not convinced? An elimination diet can help you identify foods that can worsen your allergies.
Fortunately, there are great tasting foods to help relieve your symptoms while strengthening your immune system.
Raw local honey is at the top of this list, for good reason.
The International Archives of Allergy and Immunology conducted a randomized controlled study.
Here’s what they found:
People who eat honey have significantly better control of their allergy symptoms than those on conventional allergy medications.
Battling excessive mucus? Heat things up by eating hot spicy foods.
This helps to thin mucus and allow you to get rid of it more easily. Try adding garlic, onion, ginger, cinnamon and cayenne pepper to your recipes.
Ginger can be particularly helpful, as it helps to warm the body and breakdown toxins in your system.
Bone broth (from chicken, beef, fish or lamb) eases respiratory problems. It helps you expel excess nasal mucus. And it reduces inflammation and boosts your immune system.
Be careful with your choice of meats, though. Otherwise, you could end up adding more allergy-causing toxins to your system.
The best bone broth comes from grass-fed meats, free-range poultry or wild-caught fish.
Probiotic-rich foods support a stronger immune system, improve digestion, increase energy levels, and so much more. Probiotic foods to eat during allergy season include sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha.
The enzyme Bromelain found in pineapple gives you vitamins B, C and other nutrients to beat allergies. Be sure to eat the core of fresh ripe pineapples, as it has the highest concentration of allergy-fighting nutrients.
Apple cider vinegar boosts your immune system, helps break up mucus and supports lymphatic drainage.
Want a powerful allergy remedy? Mix and drink this three times a day:
Fresh organic vegetables that help you fight seasonal allergies:
Choose dark green, yellow or orange vegetables for the highest nutrient density.
Dehydration is one of the primary causes of allergies and asthma.
So says Dr. F. Batmanghelidj, author of Water: for Health, for Healing, for Life.
Why is this?
Your body produces a far greater amount of allergy-symptom-causing histamines… when you’re dehydrated.
Dehydration also means your body is unable to produce enough antibodies to fight pollen and other allergens.
Some say 75% of our population is dehydrated.
No wonder so many people suffer from allergies and asthma!
Self-improvement researcher Tony Robbins recommends you sip enough water a day to consume half your body weight in ounces.
For example, if you weigh 200 pounds, then drink 100 ounces (about 3 quarts) of water a day.
Don’t try to gulp it down all at once. Sip. Drink some at least every hour.
What will you do with all this?
Now you have some powerful (and natural) allergy relief methods in your arsenal.
Why not try at least one of these methods today?
How can I help you personally?
Call me at 303-920-2350 with any questions, concerns or to find out how massage and essential oils can make life better for you.
by Sarah Shropshire
LMT, Essential Oil and Business Consultant