How to Get Rid of Allergies Naturally

Natural remedies for allergies

Is it that time of the year again, Spring? Time for sniffles, tears, inflamed organs, itchy eyes, headaches and other signs of allergies? Before you know this season hits you again. Most people who are struggling with their battle against allergies tend to use pharmaceuticals that range from acetaminophens to antihistamines. The less known fact about these drugs is that they may further aggravate the allergy symptoms.

According to the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, 1 in 5 people, or an estimated 50 million Americans, suffer from some type of allergies. The chances are high that you may have some allergy or you may have any seasonal allergies that you may not even be aware of!

Allergies could be defined as exaggerated immune responses to substances that are generally not considered harmfully. There are many several types such as food and skin allergies. Allergic rhinitis is a type of allergy that occurs when your immune system overreacts to airborne particles such as dust, dander, or pollen, causing symptoms such as a runny or inflamed nose.

The symptoms occur when your body responds to allergens by producing a chemical in the body called histamine. This chemical compound works by helping to counteract the allergen. The immune system causes allergic reactions by producing Immunoglobulin (IgE) antibodies.

There are several broad categories of allergies, which include:

  1. Seasonal allergies (also called rhinitis or hay fever) it mostly occurs during the period of spring when the pollen levels in the atmosphere.
  2. Perennial allergies, occurring year-round
  3. Food allergies, such as lactose intolerance, shellfish, peanut
  4. Drug and medication allergies
  5. Pet/animal allergies
  6. Anaphylaxis, it a serious type of life-threatening allergic reaction that happens as a response to a different number of allergens.

Symptoms caused by allergies are variable and depend on the kind of allergen and will vary on the kind of severity of the allergy.

The symptoms include:

  1. Skin rash, redness, dryness of the skin, peeling, and itchiness
  2. Tingling or itchy sensations on the face
  3. Swelling of the tongue, lip
  4. Itchy nose and stuffiness
  5. Nausea and vomiting
  6. Abdominal cramps
  7. Coughing, wheezing, and trouble breathing
  8. Dizziness, lightheadedness and in severe cases there is unconsciousness

Natural Remedies for Allergies Treatment

CURE 1: Foods for Allergies

Yes, you read that right! Foods and balanced diet could be used as an adjuvant therapy to help you prevent/cure allergies. Foods are a rich source of antioxidants that boost the immune system and help in the fight against pathogens and allergens that are present.

[Also Read: Natural Home Remedies to Treat Allergies]

1. Garlic (Allium Sativa)

benefits of Garlic
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Garlic is known as the jewel of traditional medicine, it has been used for a long time to treat/cure indefinite ailments, that couldn’t be cured by the conventional form of medicine. Ranging from a common cold to allergies, inflammation, and respiratory disorders and several other ailments.

Why does it work?

Garlic comprises of several compounds such as allicin and sulfur that are known antibacterial and anti-inflammatory agents. These compounds not only prevent the growth of bacteria, but they also inhibit cellular replication of the bacteria, thereby preventing the spread of the allergy symptoms.

According to a study (1)that was conducted, it was observed that a basophil cell present in the body was able to release to histamine in the body and was able to help in fighting against the allergy that causes the symptoms in the body.

How to Use?

This also is one of the simpler remedies that you could use and integrate into your lifestyle. Ideally, it is considered best to just swallow a clove of garlic directly whilst swallowing water as it happens to bear the most benefits.

However, owing to the distaste it causes, it is recommended that you use 4-5 cloves of garlic and crush and boil them in the water. You could then strain the garlic out and sip on this solution after adding in a little honey.

Additionally, you could also use garlic extract or tea as per the instructions on the label and consume it.

How much to use?

Most human studies have narrowed down the usage to about 600- 1,200 mg of garlic per day that is split into equal doses. If you are consuming the cloves of garlic, you could use 6 per day, which you split equally and consume it alongside your meals or after it. However, it is recommended that you consult with your doctor/physician before starting this regimen.

2. Honey for Allergies

Honey is an age-old sweet condiment that has been used since the Egyptian era for several purposes. Honey is known to have several medicinal benefits and has been used as a medicinal agent for several diseases including allergies

Why does it work?

Typically the belief that honey consists of several anti-inflammatory agents and is known to be a natural allergy remedy. This characteristic can be attributed to the presence of pollen allergens and components of honeybees present in the honey.

A 2002 study compared two different types of honey (locally produced and nationally-produced) against placebo in people with pollen allergy.  However, it was interesting to notice that there wasn’t any considerable difference between both of these types of honey.

However, that was due to the participants falling out of the study, which caused the failure of this study. It is to be noted that only natural and locally produced honey retain these characteristics as honey has several additives that water down the characteristics of the honey.

However, it was also noticed that in a 2013 study in Malaysia, people who had consumed around a gram of honey every day had shown improvement in their symptoms of allergic rhinitis.

[Also read: Honey, the Best Remedy for Allergy Treatment]

How to use Honey for Allergies?

Honey could be easily integrated into your diet, as it is a condiment that is regularly used in cooking and daily life. You could directly eat a spoon of honey right in the morning, or you could mix a teaspoon of honey into lukewarm water and then drink it on an empty stomach, Alternatively, you could also use honey in your beverages and sweets as a healthy alternative for sugar.

How much to use?

Although there aren’t dietary restrictions on how much honey to consume, it is advised that you check with your physician/doctor before you start adhering to this regimen.

3. Apples

benefits of apples
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An apple a day keeps the allergies away or so it does. Apples are known to be a powerhouse of minerals and these fruits are considered useful for its medicinal uses.

Why does it work?

According to a 2016 study (2) published in the journal Molecules, apples are a powerhouse of Quercetin, that plant polyphenol. This chemical compound is known to help in the reduction of inflammation and often is administered to patients in the form of supplementation.

How to use?

You could directly consume apples and this is one of the easiest ways of keeping your allergy symptoms in check. Alternatively, you could also use apple juice as part of your diet to help you fight those allergy symptoms.

How much to use?

There isn’t any dietary restriction on the number of apples you could consume in a day. However, it is ideally recommended that you at least 3-4 in a day.

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CURE 2: Essential Oils for Allergies

These oils are extracted from barks, flowers, stems and other living parts of the plant and have a lot of beneficial effects for humans as they are able to help in the reduction of swelling and alleviating pain and also helps in increasing the circulation of blood and thereby helping in boosting the reach of the immune system.

1. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil in bottle
Image: Shutterstock

Eucalyptus oil is made from the leaves of selected tree species of these plants. These trees belong to the plant family of Myrtaceae, which is native to Australia, Tasmania, and the nearby areas. There are around 500 eucalypti species, however, the essential oils of Eucalyptus salicifolia and Eucalyptus globulus are used for their medicinal properties.

Why does it work?

Eucalyptus contains citronellal, which has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects; it also works as an expectorant, that is it helps in cleansing the body of all the toxins and harmful microorganisms that are causing the inflammatory reaction.

A 2011 study(3) published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative medicine observed that eucalyptus essential oil was an effective treatment for upper respiratory tract infections. Patients who were treated with eucalyptus spray reported an improvement in the severity of their condition and when compared to the symptoms of the placebo, it was noticed that there was a substantial improvement.

How to use?

Ideally, it is recommended that you inhale this essential oil directly, you could directly take sniffs from the bottle during the day. You could also add 3-4 drops of the oil in your humidifier and place it in your bedroom while you are sleeping. Additionally, you could also add this into your massage oil.

How much to use?

Although it isn’t specified or a set rigid dosage for the use of peppermint oil, however, it is strongly recommended that you consult with your doctor/physician before starting this regimen.

[Read: Essential Oils for Seasonal Allergies ]

2. Frankincense Essential Oil

This is oil is made from the dried resin of some trees that belong to the Boswellia genus, native to Africa and the Middle East. Frankincense boosts a lot of medicinal properties and has been since centuries to treat several medical conditions.

Why does it work?

Frankincense Essential Oil has several chemical compounds, out of which boswellic acid is a known anti-inflammatory agent. It acts on the enzymes that trigger pain, it binds with these enzymes and thereby causing the anti-inflammatory reaction.

There have been several studies that were conducted on this subject, in-vitro, dermal tissues of human and clinical trials on humans. Each study concluded that this extract/essential oil was very effective in curing a lot of chronic inflammatory diseases.

[Also Read: Wondrous Essential Oils for Allergies]

How to use?

You could also add 3-4 drops of the oil in your humidifier and place it in your bedroom while you are sleeping.

It is to be noted that if you wish to apply it on the site of pain, make sure you use a carrier oil and massage it in very gently. Dilute the oil using warmed up coconut oil and to the warm oil you could add 3-4 drops of the oil and then using a gauze could apply it on the site. It should also be noted that using the less concentrated version would be safer for your skin and help you avoid the burning sensation.

How much to use?

It is strongly advised that you use this regimen only for two weeks and then check for your symptoms, however, before you begin with this regimen it is advised that you consult your physician/doctor to check with them in regards to the dosage and the period.

3. Peppermint oi

Peppermint Essential Oil Benefits
Image: ShutterStock

Peppermint oil has been used since ages for unclogging the sinuses and offer relief to scratchy throats. Peppermint acts as an expectorant and provides instant relief for several respiratory problems including allergies. It has the power to discharge phlegm and reduce inflammation- a leading symptom of allergic reactions.

Why does it work?

A 2010 study (4) published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology investigated the effects of peppermint oil in the tracheal rings. The results suggest that this oil is a relaxant and exhibits antispasmodic activity, that is it inhibits the contractions that cause you to cough.

Another study (5)published in the European Journal of Medical Research suggests that peppermint oil treatment has anti-inflammatory effects that reduce the symptoms of several diseases including chronic inflammatory disorders such as allergic rhinitis and bronchial asthma.

[Also Read: Surprising Benefits of Peppermint Oil]

How to use?

You could also add 3-4 drops of the oil in your humidifier and place it in your bedroom while you are sleeping.

It is to be noted that if you wish to apply it on the site of pain, make sure you use a carrier oil and massage it in very gently. Dilute the oil using warmed up coconut oil and to the warm oil you could add 3-4 drops of the oil and then using a gauze could apply it on the site. It should also be noted that using the less concentrated version would be safer for your skin and help you avoid the burning sensation.

How much to use?

It is strongly advised that you use this regimen only for two weeks and then check for your symptoms, however, before you begin with this regimen it is advised that you consult your physician/doctor to check with them in regards to the dosage and the period.

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CURE 3: Home Remedies for Allergies

In the comfort of your house, you could treat and cure your allergies alongside using the other remedies listed above. Allergies may take time to manifest and you may not know that you are suffering from it until you feel the first occurrence of the discomfort and pain. In such situations, home remedies can alleviate your pain and in the long run, can also help you prevent and cure allergies.

1. Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar with apple
Image:ShutterStock

Apple cider vinegar or commonly referred to as cider vinegar is made from fermented apple juice and was primarily used in salad dressings, marinades, vinaigrettes, and food preservatives. Until recently no one was aware of medicinal benefits that this solution houses.

Why does it work?

Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid(6), that is a known antimicrobial, antifungal agent. It directly acts on the pathogens and dissolves the plasma membrane of the pathogens causing them to die. It is also a known anti-inflammatory agent, that helps in warding off the inflammation and in providing instant relief.

A 2017 study found that when Apple cider vinegar found that when used alongside probiotics exhibited immunomodulatory functions that were able to curb the allergies and its symptoms.

How to use Apple Cider Vinegar for Allergies cure?

There are several ways of ingesting apple cider vinegar, however, one of the easiest is to drink it right off the cup. Take 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and dilute it in a glass of water and add a tablespoon of honey to it and consume it.

[Read: Apple Cider Vinegar for Allergies]

How much to use?

It is ideally suggested that you follow these remedies on a day to basis at least once for 2-3 weeks.

2. Netipot

neti pot benefits
Image:ShutterStock

A neti pot is a small vessel like an object that has a spout. It is normally filled with a mixture of warm water and salt and it helps in loosening the congestion that is present in the respiratory tract and helps in providing quick relief from allergy symptoms.

Why does it work?

In a randomized controlled trial involving adults aging from 18-65 years from 72 primary care practices in the United Kingdom who had a history of chronic or recurrent sinusitis and reported a moderate to the severe impact of sinus symptoms on their quality of life.

Out of the 927 patients that signed up, 217 were assigned a neti pot as a primary method of treating their allergy. At the end of the research, it was measured that using this was able to reduce the overall symptoms of allergies.

How to use Netipot for Allergies?

Neti Pots are simple to use, however, they are several things one needs to take into consideration before using it. As in the right method to use it, the proper safety guidelines to follow and the kind of solution to use.

Procedure:

The procedure could be divided into four steps which makes it easy to follow this process

Step 1
  1. It is recommended that you used the neti pot in a room with a sink.
  2. Once you are ready, add the neti pot solution into the dry pot and bend over the sink.
  3. Whilst bending over the sink, look straight down at the sink basin and tilt your head at a 45-degree angle.
  4. Now, gently press the spout of the neti pot into the nostril closest to the ceiling.
  5. It is to be noted that you have a seal between the neti pot and your nostrils. It is also to be noted that the spout shouldn’t touch your septum.
Step 2
  1. Breathe through your mouth whilst doing this step.
  2. Tip the neti pot so the saline solution reaches your nostrils.
  3. Now, keep the neti pot tipped while the solution runs through your nostril and leaves through your other nostril.
Step 3
  1. The solution coming out from other nostrils will drain into the sink. It is recommended that you continue to pour the solution into your nostril until the neti pot is completely empty
  2. Once you have finished all the solution, remove the neti pot from your nostril and bring your head up
  3. Now, breathe through both your nostrils and clear out your nose.
  4. Use a tissue to absorb remaining saline and mucus that drips from your nose.
Step 4
  1. Repeat the steps above to use the neti pot on your other nostril.

Safety Whilst Using a Neti pot

Neti Pots can be a great way to fight the symptoms of your allergies such as congestion. sneezing, and etc.  However, it is to be noted that you have to use it with caution when trying nasal irrigation.

Listed below are a few tips that you could use to make this experience safe:

  1. Using only distilled water/tap water boiled for several minutes and left to cool or properly filtered water as the main base for your neti pot solution
  2. It is recommended that you don’t use water too hot or too cold. Lukewarm or room temperature is the best for your neti pot
  3. It goes without saying that you always need to clean and dry your neti pot after each use. It is recommended that you use hot water and antibacterial soap. Let it dry out after washing
  4. It is recommended that you replace your neti pot as often as you would replace your toothbrush, that is every six months. This is done to avoid bacterial and microbe buildup in the pot.
  5. It is recommended that you stop using neti pot if it stings your nostrils or causes ear pain.
  6. It is also recommended that you consult with a pediatrician before using the neti pot on a young child.

Making your own solution

Neti pot solutions are easy and can be prepared at your own home. However, it is important to use the right type and temperature of the water. As some water types could carry unwarranted organisms that may be harmful to you.

Procedure:

Follow the below-listed steps to create your own saline solution

  1. Add 1 teaspoon of kosher/pickling/canning salt to a 500 ml glass of lukewarm water
  2. To this solution then add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  3. Stir the solution well and now you can use it or even store the remaining solution at room temperature for up to two days
  4. It is to be noted that if you have a stinging sensation whilst using the solution, use half the amount of salt and then try.

How much to use?

Neti pot is a functional home remedy that could be used at any time of the day. However, it is ideally suggested that you use it in the morning to clear up the build-up of mucus in the respiratory pathway. You could use this as long as you get rid of your symptoms and if you are feeling no significant difference even after using this it is recommended that you consult with your doctor.

3. Saline Spray

Saline spray
Image:ShutterStock

It may be a hard fact to fathom that something as simple as salt water could help you cure your allergies and the symptoms that are caused by it.

However, it has been recommended by several doctors to use a saline spray to treat your symptoms like this one of the most cost-effective and doesn’t bear any kind of side effects on the body.

Why does it work?

Saline spray is known to decongest the air pathway(7) in the body and helps it easy in breathing for the patient. Although, there isn’t any clear information in regards to whether the saline spray can reduce inflammation, however, based on anecdotal information by several people it is known to help reduce inflammation in the body.

See Also
receding gums.

How to use?

A saline spray can be used by applying it through the nostrils into the nose as often as you feel your symptoms rising. Simply squeeze the plastic bottle twice in each nostril as needed. However, it is to be noted that some bottles will deliver a spray if administered in the upright position only. Hence, it is recommended that you review the product instructions to determine the best way to use your spray.

How much to use?

You could use the nasal spray on day to day basis as there is no potential harm. However, if it is overused, you may have a runny nose as the excess water drains out of your nostrils. You could use this multiple times a day and it is safe for children and adults alike. Additionally, it doesn’t interact with any sort of medications that you may be using.

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CURE 4: Supplements for Allergies

Supplements form the adjuvant therapy, .i.e you follow this treatment alongside the primary treatment. Supplements form the backbone for your recovery as lacking nutrients and minerals could lead to you contracting any allergies and weakened immunity making your body prone to several debilitating health conditions.

1. Quercetin

Superfood gains its prospective super nature from the presence of certain chemical compounds and one amongst these compounds is quercetin. It is a natural compound that is linked with longevity, cardiac health, immune system, and endurance.

Why does it work?

This is a type of antioxidant that is found primarily in plant foods, such as leafy greens, tomatoes, berries, and broccoli. It is considered as one of the strongest antioxidants in the human diet and it plays an important role in boosting the immune system and inflammation.

Flavonoid polyphenols(8) such as these are most beneficial for down-regulating or suppressing inflammatory pathways and thereby helping in the reduction of inflammation and even prevent it in some cases.

How to use?

It is ideally recommended that you consume the plant foods to get a direct dose of this compound naturally, However, if you would like you could also supplement the body with the supplements that are easily available. However, it is recommended that you consult with your doctor/physician before adhering to this regimen.

How much to use?

Ideally, it is recommended that you stick to the dosage available on the container and then increase the dosage as per the severity of your attack. However, before doing so it is recommended that you consult with your physician if you could adhere to this regimen.

2. Fish Oil Supplements

Fish Oil or Omega-3 Fatty Acids for pain
Image:ShutterStock

Fish oil, as the name implies, comes from fish. It contains omega-3 fatty acids, which has demonstrated to have a positive impact on heart health and can protect against stroke and heart disease.

Why does it work?

Omega 3s have a  number of health benefits including reducing the risk of cancer, reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, and improving the health of your arteries and help you control your allergy. Several types of research have been conducted on testing the efficacy of fish oil supplement and in a double-blind, cross-over study spanning over two months, it was concluded that fish oil had a significant impact on controlling/curing allergies.

How to use?

Fish-oil supplementation is very simple and could be followed by just using them right from the container. Although it is strictly advised that you check with your doctor/physician before you do so

How much to use?

Ideally, it is recommended that you stick to the dosage available on the container and then increase the dosage as per the severity of your attack. However, before doing so it is recommended that you consult with your physician if you could adhere to this regimen.

3. Probiotic Supplements

Probiotics Benefits
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Probiotics mean ‘for life.’ These supplements consist of bacterial strains that are good for the body. These bacteria help in boosting the immune system and not only that, but they also help in controlling inflammation and help in the maintenance of the gastrointestinal tract.

Why does it work?

Probiotics are very specific and particular in their action. The mechanism of the action of probiotics is multifaceted, and every probiotic has its very own of affecting the patient.

In recent research (9) conducted it was observed that probiotics modulate the production of the white blood cells and in the 31 adult volunteers with allergic rhinitis orally received a probiotic supplement for 8 weeks showed that the bacteria present in probiotics helped in boosting the immune response by acting on the inflammatory pathway.

How to use?

Probiotic supplementation is very simple and could be followed by just using them right from the container. Although it is strictly advised that you check with your doctor/physician before you do so

How much to use?

Ideally, it is recommended that you stick to the dosage available on the container and then increase the dosage as per the severity of your attack. However, before doing so it is recommended that you consult with your physician if you could adhere to this regimen.

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CURE 5: Herbal Remedies for Allergies

Herbs are naturally occurring substances which originated from plants or plant derivatives. They have shown immense potential in curing a lot of diseases effectively including allergies. Herbal remedies are easily accessible and don’t bear any kind of side effects.

Some of the best herbs for treating allergies include:

1. Butterbur

Butterbur plant
Image:ShutterStock

Butterbur extract comes from the butterbur plant, which is a perennial shrub found that is found in Europe, Asia and parts of North America. It grows in wet, marshy soil, damp forests. Butterbur has long been used as an herbal treatment for migraines, headaches, asthma, urinary tract infections, wounds, allergies, Mostly the butterbur extract is made from the leaves, bulbs and the roots of the plant.

Why does it work?

Butterbur extract has active substances called as petasin and isopetasin. Although scientists and researchers are not able to exactly point out the reason as to why it helps cure allergies, however, it is believed that they alleviate inflammation. These physiological changes hypothesized to help prevent allergies and reduce the symptoms of allergies. According to studies, it was also concluded that butterbur is an effective herb for allergy treatment.

How to use Butterbur for Allergies?

Butterbur is available in many different formulations, including capsules, powders, tinctures, and teas. You could choose any of them that appeals to you. However, it is advised that you consult with your physician/doctor before you start using this regimen.

Note: It is strongly recommended that pregnant women refrain from using this remedy as it could cause complications. It is also to be noted that before buying any of these products to check for the ‘PA- Free’ tag as it is devoid of any chemicals that could harm your body.

How much to use?

It depends on the severity of the allergy and the kind of brand that you are using, however, in a general sense it is recommended that you start with a low dose like 40 mg for a day when you feel like you are having an attack. You could then increase the dosage as suited, however before doing so it is recommended that you consult with your physician if you could adhere to this regimen.

2. Nettle Leaf

Nettle Leaf benefits
Image:ShutterStock

Have you ever walked by a seemingly harmless plant and when you brush up against it, you feel this slight stinging or prickly pain. Chances are that you have encountered the nettle leaf plant. Its claim to fame was that it was a natural allergy relief remedy.

[Also Read: Acupuncture to Treat Allergies ]

Why does it work?

Nettle leaf is known to contain a myriad of chemical compounds that make it best fit for treating allergies and allergic rhinitis. They consist of antioxidants(10) that help in the reduction of oxidative stress that is observed in the pathophysiology of allergic rhinitis. It is also known to contain other chemical compounds that help in alleviating the inflammation in the body(11) and helps in battling the symptoms that are caused by allergies.

How to use Nettle for Allergies ?

Nettle leaf is available in many different formulations, including capsules, powders, tinctures, and teas. You could choose any of them that appeals to you. However, it is advised that you consult with your physician/doctor before you start using this regimen.

How much to use?

It depends on the severity of the allergy and the kind of brand that you are using, however, in a general sense it is recommended that you start with a low dose like 40 mg for a day when you feel like you are having an attack. You could then increase the dosage as suited, however before doing so it is recommended that you consult with your physician if you could adhere to this regimen.

[Read: Herbal Tea to Treat Allergies]

Allergies may seem like the end of the world, they may hinder the patient’s capability of having a normal life. However, it is to be noted that using these natural and alternative remedies could go a long way in preventing and curing the symptoms of allergy.

However, it is to be noted that if someone is suffering from an allergic attack they should immediately be taken to the hospital. As these natural remedies for allergies are to be used for prevention and for long term usage and are not to be substituted with immediate care.

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