Herbal remedies may give relief from allergies


It was a very promising article, until I read till the end and saw

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This has almost put me off a little, and I had to re-read the article. What's wrong with people who are actually writing something worth reading? Why there always has to be something distracting and repulsing?

Anyways, I invite you to read the article about the herbal treatment which can help you to fight your allergy.

By Danielle Komis, Decatur Daily, 23 Oct 2006

Forget diamonds. Tissues are a girl's (and a guy's) best friend — at least during fall allergy season. With weeds and molds out in full force, it's not unusual to see folks rubbing their eyes and noses and sneezing like they just sniffed a shaker of black pepper.

For allergy sufferers who have exhausted every prescription and over-the-counter allergy medication, one more avenue beckons — natural remedies. Natural health stores offer a slew of remedies designed to treat the underlying cause of the allergy rather than the symptoms.

Health food store owners Gloria Oliver of Gloria's Good Health in Decatur, and Bud Sulcer, owner of Herbs & More in Athens, offered their opinions on some of the best natural remedies on the market for seasonal allergies. Be advised that natural remedies are not approved by the Federal Drug Administration. For severe allergies, consult an allergist first.

Immune boosters: Boosting the immune system is important year round, but especially during allergy season, Sulcer said.

One of the best immune boosters is Vitamin C, known for its ability to kick colds. It also naturally lowers histamine levels and supports the adrenal glands in their production of allergy-fighting hormones.

Citrus fruits, bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, tomatoes and leafy greens all contain Vitamin C. However, most people do not get enough from their diet, so Sulcer recommends taking a Vitamin C supplement every day.

Along with Vitamin C, Oliver recommends two other immune boosters: pantothenic acid and Quercetian. Pantothenic acid is a form of Vitamin B that boosts the immune system and aids the adrenal glands in the production of steroids, while Quercetin is believed to stabilize cell membranes so they are less reactive to allergens.

"All of the people who have allergies usually start taking a Quercetin product," Oliver said.

Sulcer also swears by NEWtritional Health Care's IS-3, an immune support capsule that combines 10 ingredients to boost the immune system, including kelp, alpha lipoic acid and milk thistle.

"It's a great product," Sulcer said, adding that he advises taking it year-round as a preventative. "It's better to take it when you don't need it."

Herbal combination supplements such as Herbs Etc.'s Allertonic, Solaray's Histamine Blend SP-33, and Nature's Sunshine's HistaBlock blend an array of herbs to create products designed to absorb toxins, support mucous membrane health and minimize the effects of irritants and pollutants, Oliver said.

Along with calming seasonal allergies, some of these products also help with food or environmental allergies. Oliver's daughter's roommate used Solaray's Histamine Blend when she was allergic to their house cat, and it even helped her body tolerate the cat allergens, Oliver said.

Allergy sufferers usually take one of these herbal supplements in combination with the immune boosters mentioned above, she said.

Honey: Along with its sweet taste, honey offers sweet benefits. Local honey is a popular request for allergy sufferers because they've read about its allergy-fighting benefits, Oliver said. Honey from a source near your home will contain a high proportion of the pollen that stimulates and causes the allergy, and therefore may be beneficial. The pollens in the honey are believed to build immunity to allergens, thus reducing symptoms, she said.

Bottles of bee pollen granules are another big seller for allergy sufferers, Oliver said. Along with helping fight allergies, the granules contain protein and amino acids, so many people take them for energy as well.

Olive leaf is a natural antimicrobial and can be taken in capsule form or in natural nasal sprays such as Seagate's Olive Leaf Nasal Spray. The nasal spray, which contains other antimicrobials and antiseptics such as wild indigo, olive leaf and grapefruit seed extract, is usually effective for those suffering from allergies or colds.

"My husband used it, and it changed his life," Oliver said.

Things to avoid

Along with adding herbal supplements and other natural remedies, some items should be eliminated from the allergy sufferer's diet to keep allergies at bay, Sulcer said.

Dairy products like milk, yogurt and ice cream tend to be mucous-forming, making the mucous thicker, he said. Natural processes cannot easily remove the thick mucous, which increases a person's susceptibility to infections such as sinus infections.

Allergy sufferers who often wind up with sinus infections should also know that the way they blow their nose might be part of the problem. Sulcer advises blowing the nose with the mouth open to prevent the pressure of the blow from further reinfecting the sinuses.

Also, nix trips to fast-food drive-through windows and to the mile-long cookie aisle at the grocery store. Processed foods packed with toxins such as sugar, sodium and trans fats will only further stress the body and break down the immune system, Sulcer said.