How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 2

How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 2

How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 2

Other ways to naturally reduce and/or eliminate allergy symptoms

An integrative and holistic approach to allergy treatment includes supporting and improving the immune, adrenal, and digestive symptoms with proper nutrition, sleep, specific supplements, and herbal medicine. Medications may be necessary, but should be used for the most severe cases and under direct supervision by your healthcare provider.

  1. Avoid dairy. Dairy thickens mucus and for many people worsens congestion and asthma symptoms. I would absolutely avoid dairy if you suffer from asthma or allergy induced asthma.
  2. Avoid wheat. More and more data is coming out on the negative effects of wheat on the body. Grain Brainand Wheat Bellyare written by two different medical doctors stating the inflammatory effects wheat has on the body, and it all starts in the gut. Try eliminating it for 30 days and see how you feel.
  1. Avoid sugar and grains. Choose a wide variety of fresh vegetables, pasture raised protein and healthy fats.
  2. Get enough sleep. Inadequate sleep weakens your immune system and makes you more susceptible to viruses, allergens and illness. You should get 8-10 hours of sleep nightly.
  3. Manage emotional stressors. Stress can worsen symptoms of allergies and predispose you to infection. Find ways to relieve stress including exercise, breathing exercises, stretching, and meditation.
  4. Have your vitamin D level checked. Vitamin D deficiency can weaken your immune system. Ensure your level is adequate or supplement if necessary.
  5. Vitamin C. Take 1-3 grams 2-3 times daily or to bowel tolerance.
  6. Probiotics. 1-2 times daily. Buy a quality product that has 3-5 billion organisms per capsule.
  7. Take zinc. Zinc is a trace element essential for cells of the immune system. Foods high in Zinc include red meat, mushrooms, oysters, pumpkin, flax & sesame seeds, and dark chocolate.

Herbals, Homeopathic therapies and misc. therapies

If you are eating clean, sleeping well, and managing stress and still suffer from allergy symptoms, you may want to try the following natural therapies.

  1. Butterbur. A derivative from a common weed in Europe, butterbur has been shown to be just as effective as the drug cetirizine, the active ingredient in Zyrtec. [Caution to those allergic to ragweed, butterbur is in the same family.]
  2. Quercetin. Natural plant derived compound that helps stabilize mast cells and prevent them from releasing histamine. Also, a natural antioxidant. Recommended dose 1,000mg daily and best if started 6 weeks before allergy season.
  3. Raw local honey. Can build immunity through gradual exposure of local allergens. Also, helps thin mucus.
  4. Local Bee Pollen. Natural antioxidant and anti-microbial action, but is also a remedy for hay fever and allergies. Should be taken at least six weeks before the season begins. Can be found in many grocery stores as well as a natural pharmacy.
  5. Combination allergy supplements. Many “natural antihistamines” (e.g. D-hist) contain a blend of botanicals and seem to be effective and well-tolerated. These can be found at your local natural pharmacy or grocery.
  6. Homeopathic drops. There are specific seasonal allergy formulas that can help reduce the body’s negative reaction to allergens. There are specific Grass, Weed and Tree blends. These can be found at a natural pharmacy.

To say it simply, the best defense against allergy season is to eat clean, sleep well and manage stressors. Identifying food allergens and sensitivities can greatly reduce symptoms. Starting on bee pollen and a combination allergy supplement that includes Butterbur and Quercetin may be helpful, but start early (at least 6 weeks before allergens start). It may be necessary in severe cases, especially in those who suffer from asthma, frequent sinusitis and bronchitis. we recommend discussing with your healthcare provider.

If you are pregnant, breastfeeding or on pharmaceutical medications regularly, you should consult your healthcare provider before starting on any supplement or herbal treatments.


How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 1

How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 1

How to Reduce the Dreaded Austin Allergy Symptoms – Part 1

Living in Austin, often listed as one of the Top 5 Worst Places for allergies, you probably know firsthand what it’s like to suffer from allergies. This week’s record breaking cedar pollen records ha Austin is unique in having three distinct pollen seasons. The fall season, from mid-August to early November, ragweed and other weeds predominate. In the winter, Mountain Cedar pollen lasts from December to February and is unique to Central Texas. In the spring, oak and other trees like ash, elm, and pecan pollinate from February to early June. The hot, dry summer weather often kills off much of the grass, which means there is generally very little pollen in July and early August. Because of the three distinct pollen seasons, many people in Austin suffer with allergy symptoms year-round.

Allergy Symptom Preventions You Can Do Today:

  • Wash your hair every night and take a shower before you go to bed.  Pollens and other allergens can get in your hair and on your skin, transferring to your sheets and pillowcases when you lay down to sleep at night.  By washing your hair before bed, you can reduce your exposure to the allergens.
  • HEPA Filters. A type of mechanical air filter that traps harmful particles such as pollen, pet dander, dust mites and tobacco smoke. It can be very helpful in reducing allergen exposure at home. Pillow and mattress covers can also help to reduce in home exposure.
  • Avoid fans to cool rooms, use the air conditioner/heater which pulls air through the HEPA filters to reduce allergen exposure in the home.
  • Keep windows closed when driving, and put car a/c on recirculation instead of fresh air setting.  This reduces the amount of pollen ad other allergens from entering the vehicle. If necessary, limit time outdoors when allergen counts are the highest.
  • Nasal Irrigation. Rinse 2-3x daily and help wash away inhaled allergens, as well as treat sinus congestion. Also, it is a great way to prevent sinus infections.

These methods plus avoiding carpet or have cleaned regularly and keeping pets out of sleeping areas are all great ways to reduce allergen exposure.

So, what exactly is an allergy?

An allergy is an overaggressive immune response triggered by ingesting certain foods, touching certain substances, or inhaling an irritant, such as pollen or animal dander. Many people think it is a result of having a weak immune system but it is actually your immune system working really well. Substances capable of causing allergic symptoms are called “allergens.” Allergy symptoms may develop at any age, and often depend on frequency and quantity of exposure to allergen. This is why many people living in central Texas over a period will develop allergy symptoms.

Common symptoms of allergies are sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, itchy, watery eyes and nose, rashes, fatigue, and headache. For some people, these symptoms are seasonal, but if constantly exposed to allergens, symptoms can be year-round and significantly affect a person’s health and quality of life.

Some Common Allergens:

  • Inhalants (pollens, house dust, animal dander, mold, chemicals)
  • Ingested Allergens (foods, beverages, additives, medications)
  • Injected substances (drugs, vaccines, insect bites)

Medications for allergy sufferers include antihistamines, decongestants, and, when severe enough, corticosteroids. Common side effects of these medications are elevated blood pressure, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, nervousness, difficulty sleeping, dry mouth, and nose (which can then cause bloody noses). For many people, the medications do a poor job of managing symptoms and create unpleasant side effects.