AAAaaaaaaccchhoooo! It must be spring

I know its spring even if I did not have a calendar. My son and I suffer terribly from spring allergies. They say that if you nurse your babies when they are tiny for the first 3 months of their lives, that your children would not have allergies in the spring…well my son is living proof that is not the case, or at least in his case its not.

Some common allergies include: itchy, watery eyes, difficulty breathing, skin itching, even some skin rashes.

Herbal remedies are a lot softer on our systems then the over the counter remedies in many cases. For itching an herb called Butterbur is highly effective. In fact it is just as effective as taking Zyrtec or Allegra. Butterbur blocks the action of histamines. Histamines inflame the body during an allergic reaction. This herb does not cause drowsiness either like many other allergy medications. For best results you should take this herb at night, as it should reach peak effectiveness in the morning, offsetting early morning histamines.

Stinging nettle was thought to be as good as, or better than, previous hay fever medications by half of the patients tested. The dose used was two 300 mg capsules taken whenever the symptoms were experienced. Stinging nettle is ideal for those who suffer from stuffy noses during allergy season. This herb has been used for centuries and has had proven effects when tested on patients. This herb is also made into a tea, that can be purchased at your local health food store. It is wonderful to help rid allergic symptoms.

Ginkgo may decrease the body’s reactions to allergens. (For those with pollen asthma, it could also help by calming the inflammation of the airways.) This herb is also ideal in memory functions as well. It has the ability to improve memory.

Luffa complex (also marketed as Pollisan) contains extracts of several different plant products, including the sponge cucumber. (Also called a luffa or loofah, this is better known as a scratchy cylinder used to scrub the ski while showering. ) Unpublished results of a trial carried out by the manufacturer suggests that 75% of hay fever sufferers find benefit from this mixture.

Quercetin is found in red wine, apples, onions, and other foods and is therefore likely to be safe as long as you don’t overdo the dose. It has been tested in the laboratory with mast cells taken from the noses of people with allergic rhinitis (mast cells are responsible for starting off the allergic reaction.) Exposure to quercetin made the cells less likely to respond to allergen. Although we are not sure if quercetin is as effective when taken by mouth as it is in a test tube, if you want to give it a try, the dose usually recommended is between 250 mg and 600 mg, taken 5 to 10 minutes before meals.

Instead of reaching for the prescription, reach for a natural alternative in herbs.

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