Herbal Care for Spring Allergies
Spring is well and truly upon us in Southern Alberta. Most of us look forward to the flowers and leaves and sunshine with happy anticipation. For some spring means pollen and pollen means misery! Itchy eyes, runny noses, sneezing, headaches – all symptoms of seasonal allergies.
Now is the time to start preparing for allergy season. Herbs can do a great deal to support the body in preventing and reducing allergy symptoms.
Drinking a daily tea is the easiest and most pleasant way I know to take my herbal medicine. There are several enjoyable plants that can be used to make a lovely tea to drink each day that will help to head off allergy symptoms before they start.
Nettles – Yes, this is the stinging nettles you may be familiar with. When the leaves are harvested (carefully and with gloves) and dried the sting is gone. Nettles have traditionally been used to support respiratory symptoms. They also have antihistamine properties, especially when taken regularly.
Eyebright – As the name suggests, eyebright has long been used to support clear eyes. It is astringent, this means it helps to remove excess moisture and strengthen tissues, especially mucous membranes. Useful for red, itchy and watery eyes as well as runny noses.
Licorice root – Not the candy but the root of a plant. Licorice has anti-inflamatory properties. It soothes scratchy or irritated throats. It is also very sweet, adding a nice flavour to tea.
Oatstraw – Is a nourishing and nutritive plant. Adding minerals that are easy for your body to use.
Rosehips – These are especially high in vitamin C.
To make a tea with these herbs measure them by weight with a kitchen scale.
2 parts nettles
2 parts eyebright
1 part licorice root
1 part oatstraw
½ part rosehips
Combine the loose herbs together and store in an airtight container. Use 1 heaping teaspoon of loose herb per cup of boiled water. Drink 2-4 cups of this per day. Start now and you will be amazed at how strong and clear you feel come allergy season.
A couple of small but significant diet changes can also have a big impact on allergy symptoms. Removing dairy from the diet is the first one many find helpful. Diary often contributes to mucus build up and also hampers digestion for many. Taking milk and milk products out of the diet is worth trying is seasonal allergies are slowing you down.
A tablespoon of lemon or apple cider vinegar into a glass of room temperature water first thing in the morning is a great way to start the day. The bitter taste stimulates and encourages healthy digestion. It helps to reduce mucus and encourages clearing of the lympahatic system. This will reduce allergy symptoms. It has many health benefits beyond allergy relief.
If you or someone you know suffers from seasonal allergies don't hesitate to contact me. I have the above tea available. Working with an herbalist can also help you choose the herbs specific to your constitution and symptoms. Customized herbal medicines made just for you! Check out my 3 and 6 month packages. For short term solutions the cold and flu package can be applied to seasonal allgergy preparation as well. http://www.fullbloomherbals.com/#!herbal-coaching-packages/c1o2f