We’ve seen quite a few cases of full blown hay fever this season. This changeable weather seems to really challenge our immune systems. Pollens, damp, drying winds one after the other. Seems like no matter what your trigger is this year everyone is copping it!
If you are suffering with hay fever, or any other lingering, annoying condition, it is a sign your body is out of balance in some way. Our bodies work as an intricate whole which is why we always like to treat what we see presenting in our patients. Your current issues, niggles, struggles, aches, pains and irritations do matter! Whether you are trying to conceive, already pregnant or not in either category, we do not recommend random acts of self-prescription or active acts of self-neglect. Your body is giving you signs and now is the time to seek help to get it back into balance.
Patients often ask us not to bother to treating their hay fever – just get on with improving fertility and they’ll keep taking the anti-histamines. The flaw in treating this way is that hay fever shows an underlying predisposition for immune dysregulation and possible gut problems which both potentially impact negatively on fertility. Not to mention that anti-histamines used regularly can affect thyroid function. If not absolutely necessary they are probably best not taken in pregnancy as research seems to suggest that more information on safety is needed.
Sometimes professional assistance is needed to understand your circumstances fully. This is where we come in. Chat with one of our naturopaths (we have some super strong anti-hay fever herbs we can recommend) or acupuncturists today. Call 9419 9988 for an appointment or a quick script (for acute issues only).
Our 10 top tips for overcoming your spring hay fever frustration this season:
- Green Smoothies: anti-inflammatory, full of nutrients to support your immune system, and greens have a knock on effect in soothing the liver. Be careful not to include too much fruit and replace all your stimulant drinks with at least 500 mls of green smoothie plus lots of filtered water daily. For more on green smoothies, look here.
- Include lots of natural anti-histamine foods in your diet. Foods rich in vitamin C and bioflavonoids such as parsley and green leafy veggies (another reason for your daily green smoothie), capsicum, sweet potato, tomatoes, citrus fruits and mangos. Some lemon juice in warm water is a perfect way to start your day.
- Omega-3 fats have an anti-inflammatory action so give yourself regular meals of grilled salmon with broccoli and other vitamin C rich veggies. Plus a handful of walnuts a day to snack on.
- A quality loose leaf organic Nettle tea infused overnight for a strong brew reduces allergic symptoms. Drink 2-3 cups a day. Our Spring Cleansing Detox Tea is also recommended, particularly if you’ve been burning the candle at both ends or overindulging of late.
- Pressure points: These acupressure points bring quick relief if your nose or sinus’ feel congested or irritated. You’ll know when you are pressing the right spot because it feels really good.
- If the media say it’s going to be a high pollen count or windy then stay indoors as much as possible, and wash your face with cold water often.
- Rub paw paw ointment inside each nostril before you go out. This will go some way to catching the pollen before it irritates the lining of your nose.
- Alcohol can exacerbate symptoms so limit intake during the hay fever season.
- Reducing or avoiding inflammatory foods such as gluten and sugar may also be helpful and avoid foods that you know cause bloating or digestive issues. This will help regulate your immune function.
- Eating 1 tsp of raw local honey daily may help to reduce your sensitivity to pollens. (if you can find it – if you are in Melbourne – try Melbourne City Rooftop Honey. These guys are doing wonderful things for bees and local honey production)
Written by Gina Fox (FGHG Naturopath) & Milly Dabrowski (FGHG co-owner and Acupuncturist)