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Natural Solutions to Hay Fever
The emergence of spring and summer is a joyous time for most. However for those suffering from hay fever it can be a challenging time of the year. It’s estimated that approximately 27% of the UK population suffers from hay fever. The main problem is that there is no fully known one off cure for hayfever.
Causes of Hay fever.
Contrary to what the name would suggest, hay fever is not an allergic reaction to hay (in fact hay fever is almost never triggered by hay) and it doesn’t cause a fever!
Hay fever is caused by an allergic response to airborne substances, such as pollen – unlike a cold which is caused by a virus. An allergic reaction occurs when the immune system reacts to a normally harmless substance. When this happens the immune system starts producing IgE antibodies which attach to larger mast cells containing histamine and are ‘programmed’ to remember the foreign particles in the future. So the next time you come into contact with this normally harmless substance it triggers an immune response as the immune system tries to eliminate the perceived invader. It is this over reaction that leads to the symptoms of hay fever.
Hay fever can start at any age, however it’s most likely to develop during childhood or early adulthood. Often the symptoms will reduce in severity over the years.
Symptoms of Hay Fever Include:
Sneezing, itchy eyes, itchy throat, runny nose, itchy throat, blocked / runny nose, headaches, loss of smell and taste, blocked sinuses
Hay fever Triggers Include:
Tree pollen, grass pollen, ragweed pollen, spores from fungi and moulds, dust mites, dander from pets, pollution
These triggers vary in severity according to the season. If you are allergic to fungi, mould and pet dander you may have all year round hay fever. However if you are just allergic to pollens then it’s more likely for your symptoms to be seasonal.
This tends to be in the form of anti-histamine medication. However this has many side effects so many seek natural alternatives.
Natural Cures for Hay Fever:
• Bee Pollen has been used for centuries to help alleviate allergies. It is thought that this works on the principle of desensitisation. Through administering small amounts of the allergen via the bee pollen, it stimulates the patient’s own immune system to produce antibodies that will cancel out the effects of the substance when the person is exposed to it again. To achieve the best results it is advisable to start taking bee pollen 6 weeks before the season begins and then continue taking it throughout the season.
• Vitamin C intake can also help as it rids the body of excess histamine – which is a major factor in preventing allergies. We recommend a product called CherryC. .
• Chamomile is a great herb to stop your eyes from streaming. Add some Chiray Chamomile Flowers to boiling water, allow to steep and cool down. Then soak a handkerchief or tissue in the tea and apply to the eyes. Relax and allow the cooling and easing effect of the chamomile take effect.
• Vitamin D – make sure you dose up on this important nutrient, as hay fever may be associated with low levels. The best ways to boost your levels is to spend a little time each day with your skin in contact with sunlight. If the weather conditions are not conducive to this then we recommend DLux1000 or DLux3000 spray to boost your levels.
• Quercetin is a plant pigment found in foods such as garlic, onions, leeks, dark berries, citrus fruits, apples and green tea. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is thought to inhibit histamine release by certain types of white blood cells.
• Bromelain is a sulphur containing enzyme found in pineapple that also has anti-inflammatory properties. Also bromelain has shown to aid the absorption of quercetin.
• Ginger contains natural decongestants as well as being a powerful anti-inflammatory. If you have a juicer, each day juice together ½ apple and a big chunk of ginger. This ginger shot should have a powerful effect on hay fever and is considered a good cure for hayfever.
• Certain foods can aggravate symptoms e.g. if you are allergic to birch pollen you may find that your symptoms are triggered by foods such as celery, apples, pears, cherries, apricots, plums, peaches, kiwis, potatoes, carrots, celery, hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, peanuts and soya beans. The reason being is that the protein in these foods is similar to the proteins in the pollen – particularly the case with birch pollen allergy. So when you eat them the body mistakes them for birch pollen and is definitely not a cure for hayfever.
• Avoid alcohol – this will make symptoms worse as it causes dehydration and increases sensitivity to pollen. It also has a negative effect on the immune system.
For more information please do not hesitate to contact the Chiray team either by sending us a message via our website or calling us on 01202770927 for your all in one cure for hayfever.