Hayfever Top Tips
Updated: Jun 9
Such a hot topic right now as many people are suffering. Here are some natural ways to keep that pesky hayfever at bay.
You are not alone! Approximately one in four people suffer from hay fever in the UK with numbers increasing each year.
Affecting around 20% of the UK population, Hayfever, in essence is an overreaction of your immune system so the best way to see you through the summer months without a streaming nose and itchy eyes is to ensure your immune system is in balance.
Typically symptoms include:
Headaches, blocked or runny nose, sneezing, itchy eyes, roof of mouth and throat but symptoms vary from person to person. This often leads the sufferer to feel tired and irritated. Sometimes the reactions can be so severe, it triggers asthma.
Simple lifestyle tips:
Try washing your hair after going outside when the pollen count is high and not drying washing outside as pollen may get trapped in fibres of clothes and linen. Caution if you are leaving your bedroom windows open during the day, which could cause pollen to settle on bedding and irritate overnight.
As a natural barrier, try rubbing coconut oil or a balm like HayMax on your nostrils, above your top lip or on your cheekbones under your eyes. This catches some of the pollen in the air and reduces the amount entering your body.
Eat lots of raw fruit and vegetables, of all colours. These contain antioxidants which support the immune system and may reduce symptoms. Vitamin C has an antihistamine effect and also plays a role in supporting the immune system. Food sources of Vitamin C are oranges, tomatoes, strawberries, peppers, spinach, broccoi, kale and asparagus.
Eat lots of oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies), sunflower, flax and chia and pumpkin seeds for omega 3 fats and almonds, brazil nuts, cashews for omega 6 fats (unless you are allergic to these). These may all help reduce the inflamed mucus membranes.
Quercetin is an antioxidant and a natural antihistamine which can be found in a range of fruit and vegetables such as apples, tomatoes and leafy greens ( spinach, kale, broccoli). A supplement contain this, Bromelain ( a compound found in pineapple) and Vitamin C may be of benefit as a natural anti-histamine.
Try eating local honey all year round to get your immune system used to local pollen in your area and that way your body is less likely to react when it reaches its peak in the summer season.
Make sure you stay hydrated as histamine is naturally produces when we are dehydrated to cause an increase in thirst.
Nettles are also great and dampening the histamine response in your body. Whilst you don't have to go out and pick them if you don't want to, you can buy nettle tea in supermarkets and Holland and Barrett. I like the Pukka or Heath and Heather ones. 2 cups a day should help.
It has also been said that avoiding/reducing dairy consumption may also help as this can stimulate your immune system. It can produce mucous and aggrevate the problem.
Whilst these tips should be effective at keeping your symptoms at bay, it may be that if you get symptoms for an extended period of time or all year round that there is further support you require. Seeking advice from a Nutritional Therapist can help support you further and get to the underlying causes, you don't have to suffer on your own
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