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Desperate for allergy relief!  RSS feed

 
Evan Reynolds
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Hello fellow permies! I am already started to feel the allergies coming on here in Minnesota. I just started working at a local nursery and garden business which I love and I will be going back to school in fall for horticulture. I want to be outside and around plants for a living. Last year I took an allergy test at the doctors office (I never like to be there). I was told I had allergies to dust, ragweeds, pollen, and slight reactions to maple. I refuse to let my sinus problems get in the way of something I love to do. Does anyone have a good suggestion on natural releif? I do not take pills or stereoids. I currently use my netty pot and last year bought some homeopathic "medicine" from the coop. I would like to not have green mucus, itchy eyes, and a stuffed nose my whole life! The inflammation must be gone! Anyways, thank you for reading and I hope you all have a wonderful day!
 
John Polk
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I have heard that local honey gives some relief.
It must be produced by the local bees (with local flowers), NOT something off of the supermarket shelf.

I guess that minor doses of the local pollen creates some resistance.
 
Casie Becker
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A lot of the discomfort of allergies is caused by inflammation. There's a lot of natural anti-inflammatory foods and supplements. I don't know if it would make a huge difference, but there's a lot of other health benefits associated with these. Tumeric is the first one I think of, but I know there's a lot more.
 
Timothy Markus
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I've heard honey and quail eggs, not together. I hope to start getting lots of quail eggs in a week or so, so I'll test them out.
 
Rick English
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Anne Miller
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I agree about the local honey, if you don't know someone who sells it then try your local feed store. I mix mine with cider vinegar, 50/50 and use about a tablespoon whenever I need relief. The cider vinegar honey mix is also good for colds, insomnia and other ailments.
 
Bonnie Greenbud
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Neti pot and Alkalol. Works for me. It flush the allergens out and shrinks the swelling in your sinus cavity. Alkalol can be hard to find. Check the website for locations and more info.
 
Steven Kovacs
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I know this is in the medicinal herbs section and you asked for natural remedies, but have you considered allergy shots? I've found them enormously effective - I used to not be able to go outside for about 3 months of the year, and now my eyes just get mildly itchy in the spring.
 
allen lumley
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Evan Reynolds : Here is a suggestion that comes from mainstream medicine, and requires no pills or major Medical or surgical interventions , and is cheap ! .

I promise that you will find some relief -with possibly a great reduction in symptoms !


1st I want to compare this treatment style to the best course of investigative treatment if you are told you have high blood pressure and should consider a salt-

(sodium ) restricted diet ! Many doctors now suggest consulting with a nutritionalist to create a severely salt/sodium restricted diet to determine if this will have

a positive effect on your blood pressure, If their is no reduction in your blood pressure then restrictions on sodium/salt intake is generally unnecessary and may

be counter indicated.


The 1st thing we are going to try to do is to give you a good nights sleep, as the presence of allergy symptoms indicates that your body is producing additional

adrenalin - you can see why sleep is so very hard to achieve !


After working in the greenhouse every day you should plan to come home and change your clothes and shower, being careful to always wash and dry your hair -

this is your major source of allergens that you carry around with you everywhere !


Additional steps to reduce your exposure should include a portable fan with micron filtration in your bedroom , and a sealed cover for your pillow and a fresh

pillow case every night ! There is really not much in the way of daytime headgear that can help beyond a large Cowboy Bandana / Handkerchief or Triangular

Cravat that can be tied on top of your head like a Pirate or a "Do-rag" and/or putting your hair up ! ( Hair nets and snoods do not work ! )

This course of treatment was Suggested by the Chief of Services ( Head Dr.) at Albany Asthma / Allergy , and greatly helped my father after several other

treatment programs had failed or produced negative results !


My people DO believe in the Local honey and the use of Apple vinegar and I can not see how they could be harmful ! Best of luck - let us know what YOU found

successful - For the good of the Crafts ! Big AL




 
John Master
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Reading on the topic that might be of help. http://www.amazon.com/Healing-New-Childhood-Epidemics-Groundbreaking/dp/0345494512

Part of my health topic awareness was learning about mercury/amalgams/vaccines and chelation. I have been taking an herbal form of chelation (chelaco from Standard process) for a few years now. Also eating on the Wapf guidelines and constantly refilling the kitchen with wapf recommended (real) foods including raw milk which is amazing! Raw Honey produced local to you is a good idea as the bees forage on the same area you live.
 
R Scott
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All the pre and pro biotics you can get. Yogurt, sourkraut, Kochi, kombucha--any and all you can get. 80% of your immune system is in your gut.
 
Troy Rhodes
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I'm a bee keeper, and I try to eat well and local, including local raw milk. Big garden, food forest, etc etc. So, big plusses on both suggestions for local raw honey and milk.

And...I'm an optometrist. Sometimes, you just have to break down and take an antihistamine.

I could not be outside in the spring/summer/fall without claritin and benedryl. And believe me, I tried everything else first.


So, I understand and respect your position of not wanting to take manufactured pharmaceuticals, but I would at least consider the possibility...


For itchy eyes, I love Alaway. It's an antihistamine eye drop. Burns moderately for 20 seconds. Relief from itchy watery eyes in 2 minutes.


Another strategy that is very likely to work, is to wear a -good- filter mask. Not a nuisance dust mask, or an n-95 mask, but a real filter mask.

Yes, you will look like you are on the fast response haz-mat team, but your symptoms will improve noticeably if you are typical.

Good luck and we're pulling for you.

 
John Master
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homemade milk kefir has something like 50+ strains. If the little colonies (called grains) grow too large, put them in a smoothie and get them into you as well...
 
Lynn Chase
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Hi Evan,
Sorry to hear you are suffering from allergies. I would like to suggest that you look around for some wild stinging nettles. Snip the upper portions with scissors (wear gloves) and add them to boiling water. Once you've added them, turn the heat off and cover the pot. The water should be an inch or two over the nettles for a very strong tea. Let them steep for at least 15 mins. Strain it into a mug and add some raw honey and drink. It wouldn't hurt to make another batch at night and let it sit covered until morning. Warm it slightly and drink. Keep this going until you feel relief. (they do have a slightly laxative effect when you drink lots and lots of tea but its nothing awful, maybe even helpful as removing waste from the bowels also helps strengthen the body) perhaps TMI but just in case

If you can't find wild nettles, you can order them in bulk through amazon. I use the Frontier brand. Make a STRONG tea with them OR get some FREEZE DRIED NETTLE CAPSULES. Take 3-4 several times a day. Make sure they are FREEZE DRIED. I have no experience using nettle tincture so i cannot attest to how those work.

An internet search will give you loads of info on all the wonderful things contained in nettles including natural antihistamines.

When I moved to GA I had a really bad reaction to the red pine pollen that was everywhere. I read about nettles in a naturopathic book and bought a bottle of freeze dried nettles and took them pretty much by the palm fulls. By the 3rd day I was lying out in the sun watching the pollen haze blow over and had no more reaction. I was amazed and I have used them ever since.
When I visit the in laws over seas in the spring the first thing I do is harvest nettles to save myself from the "foreign to me" grasses and trees.

I have come to depend on nettles for so many health issues and they have never let me down! For the past 3 years I drink 2 TBS of dried nettles in a tea every morning with some horsetail just for the nutrients and Ive had no issues with allergies.

They are easy to acquire and easy to use and I wish you all the best relief from them should you choose to try them. You might find that you like them so much you use them every day too!

I hope you feel better soon.

K.P.


 
Kris Mendoza
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Agreeing with many of you. My husband gets awful allergies, but as he has stopped depending on Claritin and begun a more holistic approach they've gotten better. The best treatments are eating LOCAL honey, neti pot to clean everything out, and nettle tea. After drinking the tea he would sometimes lie back and put the teabags on his itchy eyes for a few minutes.

There is a homeopathic remedy available called Sabadil, but I have not tried it.
 
Deb Rebel
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I "go" when the elm trees bloom, when the milo gets planted, gets harvested, and blooms. I didn't know about milo until I moved here. So.

IF you are not allergic to honey, local honey will help.

IF you can't take antihistamines or other remedies....

Wearing a face mask and glasses that help keep the pollen out of your eyes will help (I wear a lightly tinted wraparound safety glasses all the time outdoors).

Eat spicy foods (I love peppers, not bell peppers) and also use fresh cracked black pepper. These will help keep your sinuses clear.

After going outside change clothes, wash any part of your skin that was exposed to the air and wash your hair. Get your eyebrows too. Take whatever you wore and put it straight into the wash before washing off. The idea is to reduce the allergen exposure and preventing it from getting brought into and spread around your home environment.
 
Robin Kyle
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Hi Evan

I believe that treating natural remedies with the same viewpoint as pharmaceuticals does not give you a very high rate of success. Treating symptoms without dealing with the root cause can improve life in the short term but with not heal the whole. When using pharmaceuticals there will almost certainly be other problems down the road, when using natural cures their effectiveness can wear off in time. I believe what science is now starting to discover, that the root cause for a lot of allergies is a lack of balance and amount of good bacteria in our bodies and particularly in our gut. Never before have human beings been in so much daily contact with a myriad of low level toxins that kill bacteria and brain cells, never before have we eaten a diet so devoid of life.
I think every bodies cure is site specific (permaculture thumbs up!). You should make sure you are eating lots of live foods, fermented and raw vegetables, raw milk and stinky cheeses, raw honey kombucha, cider vinegar, are some of the best. You should look into really powerful pro-biotics, from really reputable company's like Get Real Nutrition (all the products grown on a permaculture farm btw). Look into mushrooms for immune support ( fungi perfecti, is another company practicing permaculture). By all means try nettle and other recommended herbs to see if they offer immediate relief, pay attention to your body and how it reacts to things ( use the feedback loop!). We have been conditioned by our culture of separation to think that we need to ask someone else how to fix our bodies even though we are the ones inhabiting them.
For what it's worth since it is by no means a controlled study my family of 5 suffers from zero allergies, my children are the only kids in their class at school to be allergy free and they have never suffered from ear infections, they have been drinking raw milk and Kombucha since they were born and eat kimchee and dirt on the regular.
I really hope you find the answer you are looking for so you can enjoy a life around nature.
 
Joshua Myrvaagnes
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Perelandra-ltd.com -- flower essence processes. Takes a lot of patience and work but you can rebalance the underlying imbalance this way.
 
Raven Sutherland
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edible bee pollen (bee bread) collected by local bees desensitizes you to air blown pollen which is why local honey
is often recommended as it contains some of it.
 
ethan young
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hey folks, longtime lurker, first time poster. I got my permaculture design consultant certification studying under toby hemenway. And for most of my life -- until this last year -- I've suffered from diffuse symptoms of progressive inflammatory disease.

A huge contributor to allergies, as other posters mentioned, is inflammation and gut health. I'd like to take a "peak under the hood" of what's often going on in these situations...

A major fundamental contributing factor to any inflammatory attack (including allergies) is gut health -- both the integrity of the semi-permeable barrier (increased intestinal permeability aka "leaky gut") and the microbial colony itself (gut dysbiosis). The gut is the largest interface between the human body and the outside world, and it's also the largest and most sensitive interface between the outside world and the immune system. Much moreso than skin on both accounts. On top of this, it is also the one of the strongest interfaces with the central nervous system via the vagus nerve, which has some profound implications re: mental health.

The body is basically a very rough donut, except in our case, the internal "donut hole" (our gut, with mouth and anus on either end) is actually several times larger, more complex and sensitive than the external surface area (our skin).

Due to these factors, chronic inflammatory disease can have literally hundreds of seemingly-unrelated symptoms that sometimes seem to alternate or "come and go" randomly, and two people with the same underlying pathophysiology can manifest completely different symptoms: neurological (depression, anxiety, dizziness, fogginess, migraines and mania), physical pain (e.g., joint and muscle pain, back pain, arthritis), fatigue, skin problems (dry, itchy or "prickly" skin, rashes, etc), digestive problems (constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, heart burn [generally from low stomach acid!!], itchy butt, etc), and immune system dysregulation (chronic illness or feeling thereof, ineffective or overactive immune system, heightened sensitivity to allergens) etc. Any or all of these and more. For example, two people with celiac disease can have completely different, non-overlapping symptoms, and neither may have clear "digestive problems" even though it's the gut that's getting attacked! So on the surface it can seem very confusing and complex, but underneath the hood are just a few basic principles (sound familiar?!).

Reduced digestive capacity (from dysbiosis, stress and other factors, such as an imbalance between the parasympathetic (rest, digest and repair) and sympathetic (fight or flight) nervous systems, which can mean one needs "calming" and another needs support or both at once) and leaky gut result in the constant presentation of intact proteins to the immune system, which can promote baseline inflammation. This is no bueno!

Although it's not a short-term, quick and easy pill popping symptom fix, addressing gut health can lead to massive quality of life improvements over time, including (often times drastically) reduced sensitivity to allergens. The major factors affecting this are 1. lifestyle: good quality sleep, moderate exercise, time outside, minimizing stress and 2. diet: nutrient density, probiotics and at least temporary removal of problem foods (generally grains and pseudo grains, legumes, nightshades, concentrated sugars and in some cases dairy and eggs, esp. egg whites and pasteurized cows' milk) until healing occurs and you can test foods for possible re-inclusion (basically an elimination diet). Some of these foods are inherently inflammatory and actively attack gut and digestive integrity directly through a variety of defense mechanisms that also tend to double as energy/nutrient storage for the seed embyro (many anti-nutrients also serve this same function). For more info on this, I cannot recommend Sarah Ballantyne's book highly enough. She writes with a rare combination of ethical sensitivity, intellectual rigor, passion and competency. The book is heavy, easy to read and worth its weight in gold for understanding a huge part of factors supporting to or detracting from baseline health and well-being. She addresses nearly every aspect of treatment, including social and psychological dimensions, all from a grounded, well-researched (PEER REVIEWED, not "find something that supports my arguments") foundation.

Note that this approach doesn't "cure" allergies. Rather, what it does is repairs digestive capacity, drastically reduces baseline inflammation, re-regulates the immune system and prevents complete proteins from flooding the body and producing a heightened inflammatory response every time you eat, and also prevents arbitrary proteins from producing an immune-related response. Bio-mimicry is thought to be one of the main mechanisms through which chronic inflammatory disease manifests: an undigested protein that floods the body produces an immune response, and over time, the immune system starts to "see" similar proteins of other similar foods (e.g., casein and gluten) or even other proteins in the body as part of the problem. The latter is a major factor in the development of auto-immune disease. In our society, whatever organ the body somewhat-arbitrarily decides to start attacking get the disease named after them.

This approach, however, can potentially cure many intolerances (another immune response, usually not as severe or immediate as allergies) and sensitivities to foods that have become "collateral damage" in the immune war created by compromised gut health due to direct exposure or bio-mimicry, which means potentially enjoying more digestive resilience a wider range of foods into the future with fewer negative consequences, depending on how much damage has already occurred (lots of proof in the quality of your poop vis a vis the bristol stool scale and smell -- it should not smell sour).

Be careful of herbs that say they are "immune boosting" (immunogenic, adaptpogenic) such as echinacea and lemon balm. Ginger is AWESOME, good all-around anti-inflammatory, immune-regulating digestive enhancer. Turmeric has a complex interaction with the immune system in various contexts and concentrations, and can actually promote inflammation in certain contexts, as can any high-carb, low-nutrient and low-fiber foods and foods with poor-quality fats (such as vegetable oils and grain-fed animal fats). Generally our bodies don't digest carbs so well after dark so even something like that can play a factor in someone's "allergy sensitivity" the next day. When things were really bad with me, right as I was beginning treatment, I couldn't eat more than a handful of berries during the day without getting a massive allergy attack during the height of allergy season (hives, sneezing, itchy skin and eyes, stuffy nose)!

This is a really cursory overview of something that affects different people in different ways. For example, one of my main challenges was cortisol dysregulation due in part to half a lifetime of chronic back pain (since i was a pre-teen), so my treatment has had additional emphasis on regulating my adrenal system to support overall effectiveness of the more general treatment parameters. For this reason, spicy peppers may forever be off my diet (capsacin has a steroidal effect on our bodies, which includes immunosuppression), and I even have specific "AM" and "PM" smoothies, probiotic "softeas" and tea-based jell-o's and other foods to support my circadian rhythm. Many people suffering from "neurological" issues actually suffer from chronic brain inflammation and may see a drastic quality of life improvement treating the underlying inflammation. I used to consider suicide fairly regularly, for example. Partly out of frustration with my health and condition, and partly because chronic brain inflammation created a "filter" through which every life experience I had seemed and felt bad, even if it was a really good experience.

In addition to Sarah Ballantyne's work, I really strongly echo her recommendation to find a good "functional medicine" specialist, which is someone who deals with underlying pathophysiology vs the abusive (mis)treatment of symptoms so prevalent in medicine today, and is usually much more adept at helping with diagnosis. Many (but not all!) naturopathic and some conventional doctors fall under this category.

Lastly, in full disclosure: Sarah's work is called "The Paleo Approach" and I hate that title and avoided it at first for the same reason that Paul avoided mike oehler's book. I'm not dogmatic about paleo stuff and fortunately neither is Sarah, and I really wish she would have used a more descriptive title. That's my biggest complaint by far. She strongly advocates that you learn how to listen to and interpret what your body is telling you, and learn how to work with it (sound familiar?!) on the belief that everyone's journey toward health is going to look different. I think there are a lot of really interesting intersections between paleo and permaculture frameworks and am beginning to identify them and explore their implications.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I think of allergies as being a dose dependent condition...

If I get a little bit of maple pollen, then no big deal. But, if I get a little bit of maple pollen, and a little bit of dust blown in from the badlands, and a bit of dust from the neighbor's mowing their lawn, and a bit of dander from my woman's dogs and cats that are allowed to sleep on the bed during the day, and a little dust from the carpets in the house, then pretty soon, all those little insults have added up to a big insult. Then there are the things that are big insults all by themselves: mowing the lawn, the yearly flowering of the cedars, a desert dust storm.

I think of allergies as also being an inflammation condition...

So if I get a little bit inflamed from drinking a glass of milk, then no big deal. But if I get a little bit inflamed from drinking milk, and a little bit from eating wheat, and a little bit from soybean oil, and a little bit from too little water, and a little bit from an artificial sweetener, then pretty soon, all those little insults have added up to a big insult. I can eat a single helping of wheat any time I want without it causing noticeable problems for me, but if I eat is routinely, I get inflamed and sick.

So by the time I combine a big insult from the things I breathe, with another big insult from the things I eat, it's pretty easy to get into trouble with allergies.

My anti-allergy journey consisted of the following in no particular order:

- Gave up industrialized medicines, because the after-effects and side-effects were worse than the allergies.
- Got rid of the carpets in the house.
- Started vacuuming on a deliberate schedule.
- Keeping a set of 'clean room' clothes to change into after work, so that I don't drag work home with me.
- Keeping dirty clothes in the mudroom, not in the living space.
- Left my woman and associated animal dander.
- That greatly reduced stress, and increased effectiveness of sleep.
- Netti pot: The best thing ever.
- Adding lots of anti-inflammatory spices to at least one meal per day.
- Developing a few decongesting and/or anti-inflammatory teas to use as needed.
- Wearing dust masks when doing particularly dusty tasks.
- Sleeping with a light cloth over my head to increase humidity of the air I breathe, and filter out some dust.
- Eating anti-inflammatory foods.
- Not eating wheat, canola oil, or soybean oil on a routine basis.
- Using coconut, olive-oil, and grass-fed butter instead of high omega 6 oils.
- Got omega 3/6 balance back to a more biologically sensible balance.
- Lost 60 pounds.
- Arranging outdoor work so that the wind blows any created dust away from me.
- Keeping a food/activity diary to more accurately pinpoint problem foods and activities.
- Stopped using cleaners, soaps, shampoos, deodorants, drier sheets, perfumes, etc.
- Started wearing clothing with non-dyed natural non-mixed fibers.
- Washing blankets and pillows regularly.
- Using the bed primarily for sleeping, not for lounging around.
- Seeping nude, to minimize bringing contaminates to bed with me.
- Stopped eating processed foods with it's dyes and additives.
- Changed the showerhead so that it puts out a fine steamy mist.
- Taking long hot misty showers as needed for sinus health not for cleanliness.
- Installed a hot tub, being careful to not over-chlorinate.
- Telling friends no when they ask me to do tasks that I know will cause problems for me.
- Asking others to do tasks for me that don't bother them, but cause distress for me.
- Drinking lots of water.
- Staying indoors during dusty wind storms.
- Stopped eating at night or late in evening.
- If I had been using them, I would have stopped using other chemicals such as -cides.
- If I had been a smoker, I would have stopped.
- I always daydreamed about pollen filters at home, but they were beyond my budget.
- Sugary foods haven't been part of my diet, or I would have eliminated them.

Based on reading others suggestions here, and in other health related forums, I suppose that I should be eating more fermented foods. Not all that easy coming from a germaphobic family embedded in a germaphobic culture. And I'm a beekeeper that doesn't eat honey. Bwah. Ha! Ha!

In other words, for me, getting rid of constant allergies was not a one-time activity. It was an entire lifestyle change. It required a great deal of self-reflection... What am I doing? How does it make me feel?

 
Thekla McDaniels
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Everything has been said so well. I especially like Lofthouse' list.

I have rarely suffered from allergies, but a tea of mullein and yerba santa (Eriodiction californicum) gave relief after a month of waiting for it to go away. The herbalist friend of mine says coltsfoot for lung congestion, yerba santa for head congestion.

I have a friend who is very allergic to cats, and when she sits on an upholstered chair at my house ( I have 3 indoor outdoor cats) she gets symptoms immediately. Itchy runny eyes drippy nose, and she always takes nettle tea. My herbalist friend says nettles have a natural antihistamine (also rich in vitamins and minerals, and complete protein). She has an herbal tea blended for allergy symptoms, with several synergistic herbs, but I can't remember what else is in it. I do know she sells a lot of it and people rave about its effectiveness.

She does not have a website but is on face book, "Willow Creek Herbs" (in grand junction colorado) if you to buy some, and have a credit card, she'll ship some. It's called "flower power".
 
Evan Reynolds
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Wow! What a great response from this fantastic community! You are all so very helpful and I appreciate all of the advice! I have a list ready for my next trip to the co-op. This weekend I did buy a natural allergy herbal medicine with quercetin, turmeric, ginger, and other herbs so we shall see how that helps. I have always had digestive issues which is a large part in why I became vegan so I do take a probiotic but I need to switch to a better quality one. I also take digestive enzymes and since I don't drink alcohol I have essentially replaced shots of whiskey for shots of apple cider vinegar haha! That helps a lot with everything! I have also been eating a lot more walnuts as I read on the internet that helps. Everything on the internet is true right? I did buy a salt/filtered water spray for when I am at work and have reactions and I started showering at night after work! Baby steps! I can not express how much I appreciate all the advice. You are all so wonderful and helpful! I hope all of your weekends was fantastic. I'll report back soon with my experiments and with all this new information I have lots of laboratory work to do !
 
Julia Winter
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One thing I haven't seen mentioned is a HEPA filter. Joseph is right, exposure to allergies is additive. If you sleep every night in a room without pollen (dust, dander, whatever) you will have few symptoms at night and in the morning, of course, but also things might not get as bad during the day. Now is a good time to buy one at Costco, if you have that store nearby.

Another physical measure is nasal washing, either with a neti pot or with a NeilMed SinuRinse squeeze bottle. The squeeze bottle is less natural, but many people like it better.
 
Thekla McDaniels
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Speaking of air filters, the "rainbow" is worth considering. The rainbow is a vacuum cleaner as well, and you have to put up with salesperson, but the machine is excellent for cleaning AND as an air filter. Uses water for the primary filter and then a hepa.
 
Bradley Dillinger
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Location: Cincinnati,OH Zone 6a
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Hello, after many issues my wife finally tried some homeopathic medicine that worked for her. Claritin and other pharmaceuticals didn't work. Here is a link, try it out. http://www.amazon.com/Histaminum-Hydrochloricum-30C-Boiron-Pellet/dp/B005P0WRDI
 
Lindsay Hodge
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stinging nettle tea saved my bacon a couple of summers ago, but the problem I had was that I needed to drink 6oz or so every four hours to get the same relief I got from OTC allergy meds. After everything stopped working for me I looked into allergy shots and I just recently learned about sublingual immunotherapy drops... I'm getting allergy shots and they are working wonders!!!
 
Deb Rebel
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My spouse has a real time with dust mites (I joke he's allergic to himself) so we went to wipable wooden wide slat blinds, hard floors, and I bought a Dyson D25 Animal (has a special extra powerhead). I got a floor model that had been turned on about 10 times and someone broke a corner so it went in for a 100% refurbish and was sold as less than new for about half price. This thing has an 11 amp motor, and the lights may dim when you turn it on, but it knows SUCK and it does a number on everything. It has a washable HEPA filter (buy a second at the same time you buy the vacuum) that needs a wash in distilled water every several months, put the other filter in while you wash and dry the one that was used. We also bought a IQairProPlus stack/tower air filter. The doctor gives us an annual prescription for the filter stack (about $400) and insurance picks that up. It is rated for 1100 square feet, our house is 1400 and you can tell what end of the house it is set up in. These two things have really helped us reduce the in-house allergen level for him. (along with bagging the mattress and frequent bedding washings in hot water)
 
Dawna Janda
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I use local raw honey for my allergies and I've suggested it to everyone I know!

I am TERRIFYINGLY allergic to live oak pollen....to the point of wearing goggles and a respirator when going outside...it was beyond horrible for about two months while these things bloomed. By chance several years ago, I started to put raw honey in my coffee (about a teaspoon per cup and about a month prior to the live oaks blooming). I was half way through my allergy season before I realized I hadn't taken any meds. The rest of the season I kept up with the honey and no meds were needed AT ALL. I was blown away with how powerful the honey was.

This year I forgot to start dosing myself with honey a month early. However, once I felt the first itch and eye swell, I took a teaspoon three times a day. After a couple of days, I went back to my usual one teaspoon a day. I was a wee bit sneezy this year, but still, no meds were needed.
 
Mark Lipscomb
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I have largely controlled my debilitating spring alergies through diet. Lots of people have already touched on the details. It was explained to me with a bucket analogy; once the bucket is full your body is sad and you get alergy symptoms. Keeping the bucket empty by eating very well leaves a lot more "room in the bucket" for your body to handle enviromntal alergy sources.

Sadly anytime I drink alcohol it pretty much over flows my bucket. Had some cyser last night at the camp fire and today... my body is sad.

Anyway; get a real good idea of what foods you are alergic too and avoid them.
 
Dave Denysenko
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Personally, the things listed above haven't given me too much relief. The only thing that helps me is Butterbur. Do some research
(it can't have PA's) but I'd give it a try. For me this stuff is magic!
I'm looking into adding to my garden because it's so helpful to me around this time.
 
Jerry Sledge
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I used to joke that I only had one allergy season . . . January through December. I also had life threatening food allergies . . . many raw fruits and vegetables. One bite of banana could give me breathing problems. Allergy testing was rated on a 1 to 4 basis. Most of mine were 4+. Shots were erratic at best and meds only helped with symptoms, sometimes.

Long story short, gave up sugar and grains, began to eat real food(free range meats, organic produce, olive and coconut oils) and healed the gut. Seasonal allergies are rare and I never have to watch what I eat. Took about 3 years and have begun to eat grains, etc. again and will get an occasional "tingle" from certain foods that tells me I SHOULD get back on my strict diet, but . . .

Also do occasional parasite cleanses, diatomaceous earth for intestinal and (green) black walnut hulls combined with wormwood for other parasites. It seems everyone has parasites and the toxic load they provide can be problematic.

I am 67 years old and am on NO prescription meds and may use a nasal antihistamine once or twice a year from a bottle that may be 3 years 'out of date'.
 
Amit Enventres
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Excellent replies. A lot of seconds and thirds in the gut health.

I want to expand on this in something I haven't seen echoed here. Just as we are inverse plants in that our roots are our gut, our skin is our leaves, and our orifices our on the edge between in our body and out of it. Most people who have allergies this time of year are experiencing hay fever of some sort. I had this so bad for years I was told I should live in a bubble and carry allergy medicine where ever I go. Went through all sorts of treatments, but back to us being plants:

Gut health is great, because you develop a healthy ecosystem there. This can replenish die-offs on the internal side of our orifices.

The thing I don't see echoed here is that we need to care for the external surfaces of our body. I'm not talking "don't wash your hands". I'm talking soap and chlorine inhalation while doing dishes or taking hot showers. Cleaning supply inhalation, etc. Are you soaping down your face with chlorinated water every day? Than you probably just took out your first line of defense (I.e. the ecosystem on your orifices). That means the allergens can go in deeper and irritate easier.

I figured this out by learning about plants and accidentally conducting an experiment of my reaction to lawn mowing with and without a hot shower.

Another thing to consider is general toxin ectomy. I think this was echoed here. If your body isn't fighting multiple battles and overwhelmed, it can handle these things easier. Also, certain toxins may not be toxic to you, but what about your micro biome?

I am one of those who found a switch to organic grains also reduced my allergy response, especially eczema. Did you know that your body will excrete toxins on your skin as a way to get rid of them? Another blow for the external biome.

Good luck & I hope the anecdotal evidence and seemingly sound theory here helps you all be allergy free by next season.
 
Evan Nilla
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very simply, just start eating whole foods and only whole foods, and drink at a very minimum 30fl oz of water, or 1L of water a day(doing awesome if you get like 60 fl oz)

I realize this isn't very well accepted or recognized, but, diet plays a major role in our bodies overall function, even gene expression.

I have psoriasis, but i wasn't born with it. Around 17 i started seeing my first signs, very small, localized. i didn't think much of it until it got a lot worse. i think a few years later, it exploded, over my entire body. Most of my life i had horrible allergies and chronic sinus infections. After a year of talking to different doctors, different medications for various reasons, i started to do my own research. around 2008 is when this understanding really came about or began, to spare the details. What i essentially found is that our digestive systems actually have relative similarities to soil health. Both require fiber and bacterial balance(at least as a base), and if the bacterial balance is upset, it makes productivity very difficult.

I've been eating a mostly raw diet(maybe 70% depending on time of year?). this whole time and my psoriasis shifts from no coverage to about 10% down from around 70%+ coverage of years ago(circa 2009-10). Its pretty much that simple, allergies went with this. I live in a forest, or surrounded by forest and farm fields, and 'prairie' for the most part and spend a lot of time in these places. everyone i work with complains, during high pollen count days(at least those who are sensitized.) but i would have never known it was like this. in the past i would have been near debilitated.

Psoriasis and allergic reactions have a lot to do with the bodies waste removal capacity and inflammation. There is an enormous amount more of information and data available as to 'why' this is a good diet(especially for people who have these types of reactions), but needless to say i haven't come to these conclusions yesterday and i have poured through a lot of data and experiences to get here. I realize this may sound extreme from the outside, but, just simple shifts in thinking.

(just to add some 'data'. the real issue here is our evolutionary diet vs what we have been intaking in just the last few thousand years, or even 30. we have no biological systems to deal with something like the western pattern diet. a really great base about why diet is so healthy is a book "nutrition and physical degeneration - by weston a price" available free online and even skimming and looking at the pictures speaks volumes. The western pattern diet, pesticides, manufacturing/processing bi-products, vitamin and mineral devoid foods, preservatives, food additives, no fiber, no enzymes, no phytonutrients, food that are taxing todigest. all these things have sizable effects on hormone production and therefore overall body function)


Mark Lipscomb wrote:I have largely controlled my debilitating spring alergies through diet. Lots of people have already touched on the details. It was explained to me with a bucket analogy; once the bucket is full your body is sad and you get alergy symptoms. Keeping the bucket empty by eating very well leaves a lot more "room in the bucket" for your body to handle enviromntal alergy sources.

Sadly anytime I drink alcohol it pretty much over flows my bucket. Had some cyser last night at the camp fire and today... my body is sad.

Anyway; get a real good idea of what foods you are alergic too and avoid them. [/quote

Casie Becker wrote:A lot of the discomfort of allergies is caused by inflammation. There's a lot of natural anti-inflammatory foods and supplements. I don't know if it would make a huge difference, but there's a lot of other health benefits associated with these. Tumeric is the first one I think of, but I know there's a lot more.
 
Mark Rose
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:I think of allergies as being a dose dependent condition...

If I get a little bit of maple pollen, then no big deal. But, if I get a little bit of maple pollen, and a little bit of dust blown in from the badlands, and a bit of dust from the neighbor's mowing their lawn, and a bit of dander from my woman's dogs and cats that are allowed to sleep on the bed during the day, and a little dust from the carpets in the house, then pretty soon, all those little insults have added up to a big insult. Then there are the things that are big insults all by themselves: mowing the lawn, the yearly flowering of the cedars, a desert dust storm.

I think of allergies as also being an inflammation condition...

So if I get a little bit inflamed from drinking a glass of milk, then no big deal. But if I get a little bit inflamed from drinking milk, and a little bit from eating wheat, and a little bit from soybean oil, and a little bit from too little water, and a little bit from an artificial sweetener, then pretty soon, all those little insults have added up to a big insult. I can eat a single helping of wheat any time I want without it causing noticeable problems for me, but if I eat is routinely, I get inflamed and sick.

So by the time I combine a big insult from the things I breathe, with another big insult from the things I eat, it's pretty easy to get into trouble with allergies.


Exactly this. I used to have to stay indoors May through September during pollen season.

For me, my allergen elimination has included gluten (and oats), soy (horrendous headaches), msg (bad headaches), tartrazine (aka FD&C#5; headaches, stuffiness), and aspartame (headaches). I now never eat any of those. Ironically, Claritin contains tartrazine... so the medicine was fighting its poison.

I still have severe/anaphylactic reactions to ginger, pine, nitrile, and methacrylates, but I can now spend all the time outdoors I want. Pollen can still bother me if there's a lot of it, but my eyes no longer swell up and my nose no longer runs the moment I go outdoors. I still get stuffy on smoggy days, and if someone uses Pinesol I have to leave the building before my trachea swells shut, but day-to-day, eliminating allergens from my diet made an incredible difference.
 
Josh Freeman
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Location: Huntsville, Alabama, USA
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I also struggle with seasonal respiratory allergies. Supposedly, the river valley area in which I live (North Alabama, USA) was called "valley of the sick heads" by some of the indigenous people. It always seems to be the hardwood blooms and a few particular weeds that get me in the spring.

I've found that a blend of lavender, lemon, and peppermint essential oils will clear up my breathing distress almost immediately. I either dilute with coconut oil, rub on my palms, and inhale, or put the blend in an aromatherapy diffuser if I'm going to be in one place long enough (like my office). I used to keep a stash of DayQuil and Benadryl at work, but I haven't needed any of either in almost two years.

I know this isn't something that works for everyone or even every allergy, but it's made a huge difference for me. If you'd like to try some of what I'm using, PM me. I know someone who sends out free samples.
 
Deb Rebel
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I just reviewed some spring notes. Doctor banned me from taking ANY sort of OTC medication in January as that is when the last health issues came to a head and my liver numbers came back ugly. It was also where the last leaf got turned over and the weight crash was orchestrated to bring things into line.... and I had barely any issues with the elm bloom. A few days of a bit of raw throat and hide in house, eat more spicy stuff, and no anything else. It was right about the time that the cholesterol dropped the last notch and the diabetes sorted out (I am now 'normal' for both). So the stress had come off my body from health issues. No days of ugly sinus pain and pressure, living looped out on antihistamines, and hiding next to the tower aircleaner for three weeks. I was outside working during all of that period. Off sugar, off wheat and weight being trimmed are the only things that were going on then. Diet does help. More than you think. Milo will be going on any time now and I will see if it is a milder issue this pass.
 
Cris Fellows
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Allergies...ughhh. I used to cloister myself inside during spring and fall pollen peaks and run from old bookstores and cats. Nothing w I have eliminated wheat and most dairy from my diet (not gluten free, just a known wheat allergy) which helped a lot, but Ragweed tincture has been liquid gold to me. I have used it now through 3 allergy seasons, and I think I have taken about 3 allergy pills where I used to take them daily. Ragweed tincture is made from the pre-flowering above ground parts of the plant, I tinctured in 150 proof vodka with as much plant material as I could stuff in the jar covered with vodka. Let it sit, turning over daily, for about 6 weeks. Strain off liquid and use. I use 1 dropper full twice a day during peaks. I have to start hunting for some big stands because everyone wants this stuff from me! Good luck!
 
Leila Blair
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If your mucus is GREEN you have an infection and a doctors visit us in order.
I have COPD strength allergic asthma.
I take home made tumeric tincture, freeze dried stinging nettle, butterbur, and Aller 7. I also take a Zyrtec at night.
All these things help, but I still create ALOT of mucus.
Mt naturopath says parasites cause asthma, so I am starting a parasite cleanse.
 
Gay Hullar
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I second all of the suggestions of gut healing and whole foods eating. I think I read in one of your comments that you are now vegetarian/vegan? That would be something I would encourage you to reconsider. While short term vegetarian menus might be helpful for a cleanse, it does not offer the proteins and animal fats your body needs for healing. Natasha Campbell McBride has a real good book on gut healing and the GAPS diet. I think you are also wise for trying homeopathy. Homeopathy gets to the root of the problem and roots it out. It can also provide you with relief while you are working on healing through diet. The hardest part is finding the right remedy for you. You may need to try several in order to find the right one. I have found that the combination remedies purchased for "allergies" are lower potency and can help temporarily but they don't always root out the underlying issue. Calc Carb 200c, one dose every other day is a good remedy to take to try to root out the underlying problem. It is a slower acting protocol and may need to be taken for a year or more. I have, however, seen improvement within a week with this remedy. If there's swelling of the lips, tongue, throat, eyes, etc. Apis Mellifica 6c, 30c or even 200c. The more severe the reaction up to anaphylaxis (use 200c), the higher the potency should be chosen. In severe cases it can be used every 3 to 6 hours, until improvement is seen. If not so severe try two or three times a day. A really good web site for learning more about using homeopathy personally is http://joettecalabrese.com/ There is a search engine to look up conditions. Joette uses a different method than the typical classical homeopathy usually used here in the US. She is classically trained and practiced it for 20 or 25 years but has gotten better results with the protocols she now uses. She is the homeopath our family uses to consult with.
 
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