Take a deep breath in through your nose. Can you smell it?
Spring is here, and the aroma of fresh blooms is already tickling our senses!
While this may be a warm welcoming for some, it’s also a reminder that the dreaded allergy season is upon us. Hello itching, sneezing and sinus headaches.
But before you stock up on expensive allergy prescriptions or over-the-counter meds, you might want to consider the following natural allergy treatments:
1. Take it Off
When you get home from the outside world, lose the clothes. (It’s totally your choice if you decide to remain nude!) By staying in your clothes from the day, you risk spreading allergens throughout your home causing symptoms to continue. Simply leave your shoes outside the door, shower and change into something else. If you have pets, it’s also a good idea to wipe them down before entering.
2. Try a DIY Essential Oil Blend
During an allergic reaction, the body goes into protection mode and defends itself from pathogens (pollen, pet dander, dust, etc.) by releasing antibodies, which trigger inflammation. The following essential oils possess anti-inflammatory properties and work together to open the respiratory system, reduce the effects of airborne allergens and act as a natural decongestant helping you breathe easier.
Peppermint + eucalyptus + tea tree
- In your diffuser, add a few drops of each of these oils. This is a great nighttime option. Simply set diffuser near your bed for enhanced relaxation and better sleep.
- This combination can also be used topically on your forehead and chest. However, it’s important to combine the mixture with a carrier oil, such as jojoba, to dilute the blend. Before trying this, test on a small area of skin to make sure irritation doesn’t occur.
3. Get Moving (no, we’re not crazy)
Although allergy pain can feel pretty debilitating, a great way to relieve blockages is to work up a sweat. It may be challenging at first, but once you start generating some heat, you’ll feel like a whole new person! Opt for indoor workouts such as running or walking on a treadmill, jumping rope or your favorite workout video. Be sure to have a few rags handy to clean up loosened mucus (it sounds gross, but the relief is worth it).
4. Eat Healthy
OK, this one is a no-brainer and helps with just about everything. Even though you’re probably already doing this (because you’re awesome), it’s important to understand that an allergic disorder is essentially a chronic disease of the immune system. In addition to exercising regularly, eating healthfully is a ntural allergy treatment that can boost your immunity and help reduce the severity of allergy symptoms. For relief, sip on nettle leaf or green tea, green- and citrus-based juices with ginger and green smoothies.
5. Practice Pranayama
Kapalabhati pranayama, commonly referred to as breath of fire, can be used as a preventive practice. The breath, which consists of rapid exhalations and passive inhalations through the nose, has the potential to clear out respiratory passages before acute symptoms arise. To do this, come to easy pose (sukhasana) with a straight spine; close your eyes. Inhale deeply and exhale suddenly, making a puffing sound with each breath. When you exhale, pull your naval toward your spine. Continue for 10 breaths and then take a break. To heighten your awareness, place your hand on your lower belly. Perform 1-2 more sets.