Spring is just around the corner…and so is the potential for debilitating hayfever symptoms. Start building immunity now and head off future sniffles and sneezes. We spoke with Lynn Childson, herbalist in Santa Fe, and Tolle Murphy, ND at our Seattle-Wallingford store, about getting your immunity in shape and getting ahead of the allergy game.
“Nutrition is the foundation for strengthening and balancing your immune system,” says Tolle. In addition to a whole-food diet, she recommends a supplement such as Health Force Nutritionals Vitamineral Green. “The more that your immune system is functioning healthily, the less likely it will be to react badly to normal environmental allergens.”
Lynn agrees that nutrition is an important first place to turn, counseling people with intense allergic reactions to take up a cleaner diet. “I go over their intake of allergenic foods, what we would say are the most reactive for people, like wheat, dairy, sugars and alcohol,” says Lynn. Both she and Tolle agree that eliminating foods you may be sensitive to helps keep your body from reaching the allergy-response plane too quickly.
To help reduce the inflammatory response from foods, Lynn will also recommend a daily course of Reishi mushroom, which modulates the histamine response. She likes Fungi Perfecti’s Reishi Capsules. “Reishi is an adaptogen,” says Lynn. “Take it daily and it helps build red and white blood cells from the bone marrow, helping to make them operate more efficiently.”
Lynn also likes to ensure that allergy-sufferers are getting a good dose of antioxidants, either in their diet or via supplementation. “I lean toward the purple fruits and veggies that help the tonicity of the mucous membranes,” she says, recommending Jarrow’s PomeGreat Pomegranate Grape & Blueberry concentrate as a good way to add in those extra natural bioflavonoids.
Finally, when the pollens you know you’re allergic to are about to bloom, Tolle suggests Baraka’s Sinus Rejuvenation Oil. The formula combines organic essential oils to open airways and block allergen receptor sites. You can start using it a few days or weeks ahead of time, applying three times a day to the outside of the nostril. “The non-allergenic oils form a barrier on your skin, and the allergens have nowhere to go,” she says.
For more advice on nutrition and supplements to help your allergy-fighting cause, talk to a licensed practitioner at Pharmaca today.