Building Your Allergy Defense

Even if you feel like you’ve tried everything to combat those springtime allergies, there’s a good chance Pharmaca offers a few things you haven’t tried. We have a variety of natural and alternative remedies to boost your chances of surviving—and actually enjoying—allergy season. To learn more about taking a multi-pronged approach to allergy relief, we spoke with Dr. Ashleigh Putnam, naturopathic doctor at our Monterey store.

The Supplements

“I really love quercetin,” she says. The flavonoid, derived from fruits and vegetables is an antihistamine, she says, that “works for all sorts of allergies. You can take it all day long.” She recommends Jarrow’s Quercetin 500 mg. “Start with two capsules in the morning and add two to four capsules later in the day if needed.”

Other recommendations: Aller-Leaf from Gaia Herbs, which is packed with naturally anti-inflammatory turmeric and a number of other herbs that can help reduce allergic reactions. In addition, “vitamin C is always helpful,” Dr. Putnam says. “It helps thin the mucous out, and is especially good for people with sinus allergies.” She likes Pharmaca brand vitamin C.

The Neti Pot

“Rinsing with a neti pot once or twice a day works great to get everything out of there,” says Dr. Putnam. “And it helps boost the integrity of the mucous membrane.” She recommends just adding a solution of 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and baking soda to a standard 8 oz neti pot.

The Nasal Spray

Thorne QC Nasal Spray applies the quercetin right to the nasal mucosa,” says Dr. Putnam. “You’ll absorb it faster and thus get faster relief.” Unlike other nasal sprays, it’s not at all habit-forming, and can be used in conjunction with other medicines, even over-the-counter ones like Claritin.

The Mushrooms

Medicinal mushrooms can help with everything from immunity to respiratory problems. That’s why they can be an important addition to your allergy-fighting regimen. “New Chapter’s Lifeshield Immunity is great in general for the immune system,” says Dr. Putnam. “Pair that with quercetin and I’ve found that people are generally healthier and not affected by their allergies so much.” For specific respiratory issues, she also really likes New Chapter’s Lifeshield Breathe.

The Probiotics

The immunity-boosting standby, probiotics are another important supplement for general health. “If your immune system is healthy, you’re going to have fewer allergies,” says Dr. Putnam. “I like ones from Pharmax—pretty affordable and great quality.”

Let Pharmaca help you take the holistic approach to managing your allergies this season.

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