An allergy is a hypersensitive reaction to a normally harmless substance. There are a variety of substances, termed allergens, that may trouble a sensitive individual. Common allergens include pollen, animal dander, house dust, feathers, mites, chemicals, and a variety of foods. Some allergies primarily cause respiratory symptoms; others can cause such diverse symptoms as headache, fatigue, fever, diarrhea, stomachache, and vomiting. This entry addresses respiratory allergies, both chronic and seasonal (for a discussion of allergic reactions caused by foods. Home remedies for allergies can help reduce and treat allergies symptoms.
If you have allergies, you may suffer from a stuffy and/or runny nose, sneezing, itchy skin and eyes, and/or red, watery eyes. Needless to say, it can be very uncomfortable. These symptoms occur because, in the presence of an allergen, the immune system releases chemicals called histamines to fight what it perceives as an invader. Home remedies for allergies can treat all of the above mentioned symptoms.
Histamines cause a string of reactions, including the swelling and congestion of nasal passages and increased mucus production. This is essentially a hypersensitive, or overactive, response by the body to an external stimulus. You will not suffer any of these side effect using this home remedies for allergies.
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Whether allergies are seasonal or chronic depends on the particular allergen or allergens involved. Seasonal allergies tend to be caused by pollen. Ongoing or chronic allergies are usually caused by factors that are present in the environment year-round, such as animal dander, dust, or feathers. Chronic allergic rhinitis is a persistent inflammation of the mucous membrane lining the nasal passages that is caused by an allergic reaction. It is characterized by a stuffy, runny nose, frequent sneezing, and a tendency to breathe through the mouth. The eyes may be red and watery. Headache, itchiness, nosebleeds, and fatigue may be secondary complications. Dark circles under the eyes (called "allergic shiners"), along with a puffy look to the face, are frequently seen.
Home remedies for Allergies - Diet
Drink lots of water to thin secretions and ease expectoration.
If you have respiratory allergies, you may be allergic to certain foods. In addition to dairy products and wheat, common culprits include eggs, chocolate, nuts, seafood, and citrus fruits and juices. Try eliminating one of these foods for two weeks and watch for an improvement. Use an elimination or rotation diet to discover and work with food allergies.
Try eliminating dairy foods from your diet. Dairy foods can thicken mucus and stimulate an increase in mucus production. If your allergies are seasonal, it may also be helpful to avoid whole wheat during the allergy season; many allergy sufferers are sensitive to wheat.
Cut out cooked fats and oils. When your body is under any type of stress, including the stress of an allergic reaction, the digestive system is not as strong as usual, and fats—which are difficult to digest at the best of times—can put a strain on the digestive system. Also, undigested fats contribute to mucus production and foster a toxic internal environment.
Home remedies for Allergies - Supplements
Home remedies for allergies Calcium and magnesium are important nutrients for the allergy sufferer. They help to relax an overreactive nervous system. While symptoms are acute, take a supplement containing 750 to 1,000 milligrams of calcium and 500 milligrams of magnesium twice a day. Then take the same dosage once a day for two months.
Allergies are often related to the transformation and transportation of foods in the digestive system. Taking a digestive-enzyme supplement will enhance the assimilation and utilization of nutrients. Take a full-spectrum digestive-enzyme supplement providing 5,000 international units of lipase, 2,500 international units of amylase, and 300 international units of protease, plus 500 to 1,000 milligrams of pancreatin immediately after each meal.
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a good source of sulfur, a trace mineral that may help to reduce the severity of the allergic response. Take 500 milligrams three or four times daily, with meals.
Selenium is an antioxidant and works synergistically with vitamin E. Take 50 to 100 micro grams twice a day during the allergy season.
Vitamin C has anti-inflammatory properties. During acute flare-ups, take 1,000 milligrams five times a day for four to five days. Follow this with 1,000 milligrams three times a day for three weeks; then take 1,000 milligrams a day for two months. Some people with allergies find mineral ascorbate vitamin C or esterified vitamin C (Ester-C) easier to tolerate than simple ascorbic acid.
Home remedies for Allergies - Herbs
If your nasal mucus is green or yellow, you may have an infection on top of allergies. Take one dose of an echinacea and goldenseal combination formula supplying 250 to 500 milligrams of echinacea and 150 to 300 milligrams of goldenseal two to three times daily for five to seven days to help resolve the infection.
Nettle can be very helpful for drying out the sinuses. It can be highly effective for chronic allergies. Take 150 to 500 milligrams two or three times daily, as needed, for two weeks.
Turmeric is an East Indian herb with natural anti- inflammatory properties. It is an excellent remedy for those who suffer from fatigue coupled with allergies. Take 500 milligrams three times daily.