Autumn’s turning leaves and flaming colors make it one of the most visually stunning times of the year. For allergy sufferers though, all that beauty comes at a price – seasonal allergies. For many, enthusiasm for autumn’s beauty is severely dampened by weeks of sneezing, wheezing, watery eyes, and stuffy noses.
But it doesn’t have to play out that way if you prep your body for the seasonal onslaught. This fall, instead of dragging and drugging yourself through the season and praying for an early frost, take a multi-pronged approach by upgrading your nutrition, supplements, and lifestyle habits. Here’s my do-now list of seasonal allergy-fighting strategies to help you feel better all season long:
Eat quercetin–rich foods. They’re anti-inflammatory and help curb the release of the histamines that makes mucous flow, eyes water, and noses run. A few top quercetin-rich picks: apples, capers, kale, spinach, broccoli, red onions, sweet onions, garlic, blueberries, black plums, black currants, apples, and cherries.
Dump allergenic foods. If your immune system’s already under siege from too much of a bad thing — e.g., processed foods, gluten, dairy, and sugar — it won’t be in any shape to fight off the autumnal pile-on of allergens either. How to fortify your immune system? Dump the foods that inflame. Take your fortification a step further by doing a two-week elimination diet to purge the most common health allergens from your diet. The result? An immune system that’s strong enough to keep you well through the fall and beyond.
Eat inflammation-taming foods. To keep your immune system in tip-top shape, feed it foods that quell inflammation, including non-starchy veggies (think dark leafy greens), nuts, grass-fed meat, wild-caught sustainable fish, and lower-sugar fruits such as berries.
Drink your allergies away. Try this fresh green smoothie, which is chock full of the natural antihistamine quercetin and delicious to boot!
Don’t forget your probiotic. To further fortify your gut bacteria and maintain a healthy bacterial balance, add a daily probiotic. Daily fortification will keep immunity strong and help your body repel bacterial invaders, fight off infections, and stay more resilient.
Cover your vitamin bases. A daily multivitamin is a simple, effective, and efficient no-brainer way to support a good diet, and to help cover the occasional dietary shortfall by supplying nutrients and vitamins essential to digestive function, immunity, muscle function, and detoxification.
Add an allergy-tamer. We like Natural Allergy Support because it’s a drug-free, non-drowsy, natural blend of allergy-tamers, including Tinofend®, nettle leaf, quercetin, and vitamin C.
Add an inflammation cooler. Another favorite inflammation tamer? Omega-3 fish oils, a building block of good health, deliver anti-inflammatory, heart-protective effects. What’s more, they’ve also been linked to reduced hay fever risk — one of the season’s more common afflictions.
Keep your nasal passages clear. Rinse them as often as needed with sterile water and a neti pot, or with a saline spray. This will help keep the passages clear, swelling at bay, and the moisture inside your nose instead of dripping out of it.
Rinse your eyes. During allergy season, eyes can get scratchy, itchy and crusty, not to mention red and swollen — not a good look! If your eyes tend to get hit hard, add them to the must-rinse list too. If you’re on the go, try homeopathic allergy-relief eye drops to soothe and add moisture.
Clean your ‘do. And by that we mean rinse your hair and shower at the end of the day. This will help wash away any allergens that have taken up residence in your hair or on your skin. It will also help keep allergens out of pillows and bedding, so you won’t be snorting them while you slumber.
Get steamy. Got a steam room or sauna at your local gym? Then take advantage a few times a week! The sauna’s therapeutic heat can help clear congestion and boost the resilience of the nervous system, the health of which is linked to chronic allergies.