We’re all so glad the spring weather is here. The only downside? Those sweet smelling breezes carry in pollen that makes us sniffly. Luckily, these expert tips quiet allergy symptoms — fast!
Sip Thistle Tea
Drinking two mugs of mild, slightly sweet milk thistle tea can make your postnasal drip, runny nose, and other sinus symptoms drop by 33 percent in one week, recent studies suggest. Allergist Ali Zamani, M.D., explains that milk thistle reduces your immune system’s production of a protein (IgE) that irritates and inflames the delicate membranes lining your sinuses.
Eat Fruit and Ginger
Enjoying 2 cups of fresh fruit with 1 tsp. of fresh ginger (or 1⁄2 tsp. of ground ginger) daily can cut sneezing and congestion by 75 percent. British researchers say fruit’s quercetin cuts the production of symptom-triggering histamine in half, while ginger brims with a healing compound (6-gingerol) that prevents sinus inflammation.
Try Perilla Oil
Taking 3,000 mg. of this herbal extract daily tamps down itchy, bloodshot eyes for 90 percent of spring allergy sufferers, often within a week, Canadian scientists say. Explains allergist Tom Makino, M.D., perilla oil contains a compound (rosmarinic acid) that dampens eye inflammation and swelling, plus speeds the healing of tissues.
Take Meds Before Bed
Allergies trigger inflammation that dampens the body’s production of energizing hormones, plus it’s hard to sleep when you’re stuffed up! Taking allergy meds at bedtime blocks the inflammatory response, making energy soar for 90 percent of women in 48 hours.
Dab on Lavender
Life’s daily stressors increase levels of cortisol, which makes allergic reactions more intense and longer-lasting. But new research suggests that dabbing lavender essential oil onto your wrists twice daily has the power to calm the body’s reaction to allergens by cutting cortisol production by 70 percent.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.