Surviving Spring with Allergies
While its great to turn our backs on winter, many allergy sufferers aren't about to welcome spring too quickly. Seasonal allergies are often worse during spring. Pollen from flowers, grasses and weeds can trigger allergic symptoms including:
- allergic rhinitis (hay fever)
- runny nose
- watery eyes
- itchy throat
Pollen season lasts for several months. While pollen can be difficult to avoid, the good news is there are things sufferers can do to help minimise symptoms. Research indicates the underlying cause is a compromised immune system. With 80% of your immune system in the gut, focussing on supporting your body to heal itself is essential. But first, what's the go with spring?
Why Are Allergy Sufferers often Worse In Spring?
Spring is the season where nature seems to wake up again. Flowering plants (including wattle) rely on birds and bees to distribute small amounts of pollen from one plant to another. Pasture grasses and weeds produce large amounts of pollen relying on the wind to distribute the pollen across long distances. This explains why some people produce symptoms despite living far away from the allergic source.
Hayfever, asthma and asthma thunderstorms
Hayfever can lead to asthma. 80% of asthmatics also get hayfever. Asthma can be exasperated by asthma thunderstorms. Asthma affects the lower airways while hayfever affects the upper airways. Asthma sufferers may be more prone to asthmatic attacks when is hayfever is active. Small particles of allergic pollen can penetrate deep within the airways of the lungs.
The thunderstorms can contribute to and exasperate the allergen penetrating the lungs. Strong winds circulate pollen in the air, and there is a sudden drop in air pressure. Combined with rain drops that wet the pollen causing the tiny pollen grains to explode and release numerous particles into the air which can infiltrate the lungs deeper.
Our genes haven't changed. Soothing else has changed lots of factors at play including hygiene hypothesis, phenolics, seeing a reduction in microbes and development of microbiome, leaky gut, use of antibiotics, Standard Australian (American) Diet (SAD), chemicals, pesticides, glyphosate has lead to a huge reduction in diversity of gut flora.
Tips to reduce pollen exposure
- Stay indoors during peak pollen times (morning and dusk) .
- Avoid being outside during windy days and after thunderstorms, particularly when pollen counts are high. Information about Australian pollen counts is available at www.pollenforecast.com.au
- Try to avoid exposure to when grass is being mowed.
- Plan holidays around non- pollen season
- Wear sunglasses to protect eyes.
- Invest in an indoor air purifier
- Wear sun glasses to protect your eyes.
- Remove allergic weeds or trees near windows
- Invest in a good water purifier and only drink purified water.
- Shower and wash hair at night time to remove pollen.
- Install a shower water filter which removes pollen
- Always carry a good supply of tissues.
- Avoid hanging out washing during peak pollen times.
- Use clothes dryer to dry sheets and clothes for sensitive family members.
- Keep windows closed at home and in the car. Use recirculating air conditioning in the car.
- Avoid picnics in parks or in the country during the pollen season.
- Try to plan holidays out of the pollen season or holiday at the seaside.
- Research plants less likely to trigger allergic rhinitis or asthma and plant those.
Boosting Your Immune System Naturally
In general, by being a healthier person in general can give your immune system a natural boost. This means focusing on those daily habits that you might need to improve, such as:
- eating a healthier diet with lots of vitamins and minerals
- exercising regularly
- drinking plenty of water
- Getting adequate sleep is also really important for your general health and wellness, which is easier to do when you are eating right and exercising.
- Eat a healthy diet, try to focus on whole foods like fruits and vegetables, switch to whole grains and complex carbohydrates, and cook more meals at home. For recipes and clean eating inspiration check out Simple Allergy Free Eats.
Relief from Allergy Symptoms
When you are in the midst of experiencing symptoms you want relief as quickly as possible. Common treatments may provide temporary relief include antihistamines, decongestants, corticosteroids and nasal sprays. Be aware that while providing relief these medications do not cure allergies and often have side effects. Often people find they stop working after a while too.
Good Quality Supplements
Many of my clients have found great success using Immune Health which provides a traditional immune system boost to help protect you and promote everyday immune system health.
- Combines traditional immune boosters such as echinacea and ginseng that have been in use for centuries.
- Can help relieve the symptoms of colds, flu and catarrh as well as upper respiratory tract infections.
- Traditional support for your immune response to help maintain health and wellness.
Respiratory health is another supplement I often recommend and have had great feedback from clients. It is designed to assist the respiratory system by providing symptomatic relief from coughing due to bronchial congestion, as well as lessening the symptoms of hay fever, sinus congestion, catarrh and influenza.
- Breathe easier - assists the respiratory system by providing symptomatic relief from coughing due to bronchial congestion.
- Formulated with a unique combination of herbal extracts used traditionally as expectorants to help relieve mucous congestion and catarrh throughout the respiratory tract.
- Lessens the symptoms of hay fever, sinus congestion, catarrh and influenza.
Look After Your Gut
Healing and maintaining a healthy gut is key to optimal health. Probiotics might seem just like a trend or a hot topic, but that is only because of how beneficial they can be for your body. Probiotics are often promoted to people who have digestive issues, especially with a leaky gut. However, they can also help with your immune system and ensuring you have the best protection possible from the cold or flu. Probiotics provide bacteria for your body, but it is a good type of bacteria. This allows you to absorb more nutrients into your body and helps to support your immune system, so that you can fight off the bad bacteria.
- Probiotic rich foods
- Probiotic drinks
I suggest a probiotic rich diet and supplementing. My preferred probiotic is this one. Taking a probiotic everyday won't cut it if we are eating take away food every second night or treating your gut badly. Healing your gut isn't a quick fix, it's a lifestyle of making choices your body will thank you for. I encourage you to check out my Love Your Gut program for long term gut healing that will set you and your family up for a healthier future.