Having allergies to pollen and other environmental allergens is a miserable experience.
This year I’ve seen more patients than usual with this problem. Their eyes & throat itches, their nose runs and they’re tired.
Like most health issues, dealing with allergies effectively means not only addressing the symptoms, it also means correcting the underlying imbalances behind the symptoms.
To accomplish that deeper healing requires a good understanding of the factors that can create systemic imbalances. And since everyone will have their own unique combination of factors, I won’t be addressing specifics of these in this article. Suffice it to say that anything that causes your body to work hard to adapt can be a factor helping create allergic reactions.
For the acute symptoms there are some very effective natural ways to reduce the misery allergies bring. Here are the best ones in my experience:
- NAC (N-Acetyl-Cysteine) – This amino acid does two things that help relieve sinus allergies. First, it breaks up and dries excessive mucus in the respiratory tract. In addition is provides powerful support for the immune system. A double win!
- Quercetin – In the category of flavinoids, quercetin blocks substances involved in allergy symptoms and inhibits mast cell secretion. It exerts anti-inflammatory effects that reduce the swelling of the lungs, eyes and nasal passages. At the same time it has anti-histamine effects that help to prevent runny nose and watering eyes.
- Bromelain – An enzyme found in unripe pineapple, bromelain helps dissolve the outer membrane of antigens, thus neutralizing the foreign proteins that trigger many allergies.
These three substances together are very effective at reducing symptoms. They should all be available at your local health food store, natural supplement supplier or on the internet. Often you can find two or even all three together in one remedy.
Occasionally people need even more support than these three substances can offer. When that’s the case, I like a formula made by Health Concerns called, “Xanthium Relieve Surface.” It’s a modified Chinese herbal formula that can be very helpful in drying mucus membranes.
If someone can’t locate this particular formula, there are Chinese patent formulas that accomplish the same thing. My favorite among these is called “Bi Tong Pian,” which translates to “Clear Nose Tablet.”
I’ve also found acupuncture to be very helpful in clearing acute symptoms and helping support the immune system.
As mentioned earlier, clearing symptoms is good, but better still is correcting the underlying imbalances that create them. For that I recommend working with someone familiar with Metabolic Typing® and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition.
Hyperhealth Pro Database, In-Tele-Health, Hansville, WA, 2009.
Thornhill, S. M., et al. Natural treatment of perennial allergic rhinitis. Alternative Medicine Review. 5(5):448-454, 2000.
Shaik, Y. B., et al. Role of quercetin (a natural herbal compound) in allergy and inflammation. J Biol Regul Homeost Agents. 20(3-4):47-52, 2006.
Cichoke, Anthony J. The Complete Book of Enzyme Therapy. Avery Publishing Group, Garden City Park, New York, USA. 1999:46.