How Naturopathic Doctors Treat Seasonal Allergies
It’s spring, which means allergy season is coming into full swing. Did you know there are natural supports for allergies, and you can use them with or without your antihistamines? We understand the struggle and the importance of finding symptom relief for those that experience seasonal allergies.
As Naturopathic Doctors, we look to a preventive approach against allergies. This looks like supporting the immune system and getting to the source of allergic flares to reduce symptoms. With that said, it’s important to start supplementation before allergy season; most of the studies we use to determine effective supplementation look at the impact of reducing symptoms after 12 weeks. Since supplements do not work as instantaneously as pharmaceuticals (antihistamines like claritin and reactin), for them to have the intended impact we need to start supplementing at least 4-8 weeks before peak allergy season. Now is the best time to start!
Evidence-Based Vitamin Supplement for Seasonal Allergy Relief
- Black Cumin Seed as a natural anti-histamine, and anti-inflammatory. It also has immune enhancing effects – all of which help to reduce symptoms of allergies. Anti-histamine medications function by blocking the release of histamine from mast cells when we come in contact with an allergen, and black cumin seed can function in the same way!
- Quercetin as another natural anti-histamine: a bioflavonoid with antioxidant and anti-allergy action, quercetin can inhibit histamine release from mast cells, and decreases inflammatory compounds that cause congestion and stuffiness.
- Probiotics to balance the gut, regulate the immune system long term, and help reduce overall symptoms. One large, and well conducted study found that people who took a probiotic reported better quality of life during allergy season, where the control group (placebo aka no treatment) had no significant differences in symptoms. Evidence shows improved quality of life in people with hay fever (allergies) as well, and we likely need more research to fully understand how to optimize probiotics for allergies, the data agrees that a broad spectrum is best. We recommend Cytomatrix multi strain 11!
Benefits of Supplementation
- Decrease inflammation: driving inflammation down before peak allergy season will help improve the body’s tolerance to the allergic response. This means less symptoms!
- Boost immune system: specifically probiotics, vitamin C and vitamin E. Vitamin E has been shown to reduce eosinophil levels, which are immune cells that cause itching.
- Addressing vitamin deficiencies: it’s important to consider ruling out certain vitamin deficiencies with our NDs, we look specifically to vitamin D and iron.
- Reduced symptoms: supplementation with this preventive approach helps reduce nasal congestion, itchy nose, runny nose, sneezing,
- Improve overall health: well, it’s a win-win right?
FREE RESOURCE ALERT! We've created a guide to managing your seasonal allergies, and it's available free for download on our resources page - CLICK HERE to check out the guide
If you found this helpful, we encourage you to meet with our ND's to chat about options for helping with allergies. We can help you incorporate natural alternatives for seasonal allergy support, and help decrease the amount of anti-histamine medications over time in an effective way! Contact us today to get a head start on allergy season!
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** It’s important to consider the risks of interactions with other medications, and potential side effects of supplementation. This is best done with one of our Naturopathic Doctor. Always consult your health care professional before beginning a new supplement.
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