How to Beat Seasonal Allergies
Spring is in the air and so are the allergies! Do you feel sneezy or get occasional bouts of cough and congestion, especially during the change of season? If yes, then it is most likely an allergy, triggered by the change in weather. Though weather alone isn’t the culprit. Different allergens floating in the air contribute to spreading allergies.
Allergies occur when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance such as pollen, bee venom or pet dander or a food that doesn't cause a reaction in most people. Our immune system produces substances known as antibodies. The substances that cause allergic reactions are allergens.
When someone has allergies, their immune system makes an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE). These antibodies respond to allergens. The symptoms that result are an allergic reaction. When you come into contact with the allergen, your immune system's reaction can inflame your skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system.
We sometimes confuse these allergies with the common cold as both reflect similar symptoms. However, the common cold is caused by viruses, both have different lines of treatment and the most important difference is that allergies aren’t contagious.
How you react to a particular allergen depends on your body and the strength of your immune system. Most common symptoms of seasonal allergies are:
- Watery Eyes
- Itchy Nose Membrane
You may or may not exhibit all of these symptoms.
Foods that help bring quick relief
In turmeric, the active ingredient is Curcumin (polyphenolic phytochemicals) that has the ability to prevent Histamine in the body and reduce inflammation as well. Turmeric can absorb in the body if black pepper is present otherwise it will go out in the form of either sweat or urine. So never forget to add a pinch of black pepper while having turmeric latte.
Coconut therapy does wonders in seasonal allergy as the lauric acid present in the coconut has anti-fungal, anti-allergic and immunity-boosting benefits.
Tulsi Ginger Tea
Tulsi is called the Queen of herbs for a reason. It has anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-allergic, and anti-hypertensive properties that help boost the body’s defense against allergens. Ginger has phenolic compounds gingerols and shogaols. It is also known to be respiratory protective with anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Regular consumption of Tulsi and Ginger tea helps to reduce allergic symptoms and prevent seasonal allergies. It is best to have it early morning or in the evening.
Nip them in the bud
Seasonal allergies can be annoying as they can last from a few days to a few weeks. Repeated exposure to allergens can even aggravate the symptoms, leading to a longer duration of the reaction. If you know which season and allergen causes you a reaction you can visit your doctor and check for anti-allergen tablets. It is important to establish your allergen, otherwise, you may keep getting exposed to it and elongate your body’s reaction. Your doctor can even conduct an allergy test to know which thing you are allergic to.
Boost Your Immune System
- ○ Consume at least one serving of citrus fruits every day and let that vitamin C work its magic
- ○ Include turmeric in your diet, drink turmeric milk or have you tried the turmeric latte yet?
- ○ Ginger tea is a strong antioxidant which aids in building robust immunity
- ○ Walnuts bring relief to coughing and sneezing due to their high magnesium content. And the vitamin E in them enhances immunity.
- ○ Apples, Pomegranates, Berries, and Grapes are magical for your immune system because of their high antioxidant content
- ○ Onions and Garlic contains quercetin, an antihistamine - a substance that curbs allergic symptoms. Include good quantities of these in your daily diet.
- If you still catch allergies antihistamine medicines can provide symptomatic relief. Yes, only symptoms of seasonal allergies can be abated and exposures must be avoided.
- Use nasal sprays and decongestants for relief.
- If you are allergic to spores, stay indoors during spring and fall, keep windows closed.
- Dry your laundry indoors to avoid the accumulation of pollen on them.
- Keep the windows open during winter for some time during the day. This will help release dust mites and indoor dust out.
- Use dehumidifiers during the rainy season to prevent the growth of mildew indoors.
- Give a bath to your kids, including a head wash before bed. You don’t want any allergens sticking to your kids as they sleep.
- Leaving shoes outside the house is also a good way to avoid entry of dust and spores in the house.
- Use air purifiers or ACs with good filters to banish some allergens.