Flowers are blooming, the weather is getting warmer, the days are getting longer and the spring allergy season is upon us. This is the time when tree and grass pollens are more prevalent in the air, but don’t let allergies ruin your enjoyment of going outside.
An allergic reaction happens when your body’s immune system overreacts to an allergen it perceives as a threat. The severity of allergies varies from person to person. It releases chemicals including histamine, designed to stop the spread of an infection, and it’s these that cause your unwanted symptoms.
You may find that you are suffering with some of the typical symptoms that occur at this time of year. These can include: sneezing; itchy, red and watery eyes; runny or stuffy nose; earaches; sore throat; loss of smell; itchy nose, mouth throat or ears; tiredness or fatigue and feeling generally unwell. Less common symptoms include: headache; shortness of breath; wheezing and coughing.
You can try and minimise your exposure to pollen by wearing sunglasses and tying your hair back when outside. When indoors it is a good idea to close windows, turn fans off, and try to vacuum and dust regularly. Lifestyle changes may also help ease your springtime woes. Adding certain foods to your diet could actually help relieve symptoms, reduce inflammation and boost your immune system.
Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is one of the most common allergic reactions caused by pollen, and can result in some unpleasant and sometimes debilitating symptoms for which a doctor may prescribe antihistamines, but Holland & Barrett have a range of all-natural treatments that studies show can help with allergy symptoms.
Nettles have long been thought to relieve allergy symptoms, including hay fever, and one of the easiest ways to take the natural remedy is in a tea. Try Heath & Heather Tea Nettle 50 Tea Bags (50) for a light, gentle and refreshing drink.
One of the best ways to stop hay fever is by not inhaling pollen and a simple balm can help act as a barrier against pollen getting up your nose. Haymax have a variety of Pure Organic Drug Free pollen barrier balms that are suitable for both adults and children. Just apply a small amount at the bottom of your nostrils and re-apply regularly or when needed.
Nasal sprays can offer instant relief, working within minutes to relieve a blocked and bunged up nose for several hours. Holland & Barrett sell A.Vogel Pollinosan Nasal Spray 20ml that has a cleansing action to clear the nose of pollen, dust and other allergen particles, restoring the fluid and moisture in the nose making it feel more comfortable.
Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapple that works in synergy with quercetin. Studies have shown it can help balance an over-sensitive immune system and reduce allergic sensitisation. Take one tablet three times daily, preferably with meals, of the Holland & Barrett Bromelain 60 Tablets 500mg to ease inflammation associated with allergies.
Quercetin is a powerful antioxidant compound found in plant foods including leafy greens, tomatoes, berries and broccoli. Studies have shown quercetin supplements to be effective at fighting allergy, with no side effects. Holland & Barrett sell Solgar Quercetin Complex 50 Vegi Capsules offer a blend of ingredients in capsule form. The bioflavonoid quercetin is combined with Ester-C (a non-acidic form of Vitamin C), acerola berry, rutin and rosehips as well as the natural enzyme bromelian.
Nothing is more irritating than having itchy, swollen, watery eyes and if your eyes are red, tearing up or burning it can be very hard trying not to constantly rub them which will trigger a further release of histamine and worsen the symptoms. If they do become inflamed, they can obscure your vision, which can be dangerous. Cutting back on wearing your contact lenses will prevent pollen from being trapped in the eyes. A.Vogel Eye Drops 10ml available from Holland & Barrett can give relief to dry, irritated or tired eyes. The drops provide rapid moisturisation and refreshment to help maintain lubrication of the eye and are suitable for use when wearing contact lenses.
There’s anecdotal evidence that eating locally produced honey helps relieve hay fever. Instead, taking one to two tablets daily of Holland & Barrett Bee Pollen 500mg Tablets could help.
While may be an old wives’ tale that vitamin C prevents the common cold, it does have beneficial immune supporting and antioxidant properties. Holland & Barrett has a wide selection of vitamin C caplets, chewable vitamin C tablets, easy-to-take vitamin C effervescent tablets and vitamin C powder.
Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, taking any medications or are under medical supervision, please consult a doctor or healthcare professional and always read the label before use.