The temperature climbs, the sun stays out a little bit longer, and nature is in full bloom. It’s springtime in the United States and after a long winter cooped up indoors, many of us are ready to get out and experience the great outdoors. Unfortunately during the transition from winter to spring most of us forget that seasonal allergies exist. Getting out to smell the fresh air just got a little bit harder. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation, 40 million American adults and children are affected by “seasonal” allergies. Symptoms include a stuffy nose, sneezing, nasal itching, clear nasal discharge, and itching of the roof of the mouth or ears. I know what you’re thinking: 1. You’ve suffered from symptoms like this, 2. Nasal discharge aka boogers are totally gross. This year get ready to kick seasonal allergies to the curb and keep allergies away from your home, body, and mind.
One of the most important things to think about when fighting seasonal allergies is understanding how the body responds to allergy-triggering substances like pollen and mold. The runny noses, sneezing, and itchy feelings that people contract are simply the body’s immune system trying to defend itself. The immune system mistakes allergens as a very harmful substance and overreacts to allergens by producing Immunoglobulin (IgE) antibodies. These IgE antibodies release a compound called histamine that triggers fluid to escape from capillaries into tissues. The release of histamine leads to the classic symptoms of a runny nose and watery eyes. Combating seasonal allergies appears to be easy when you can pick up an anti-histamine medication at any local drugstore, but there are more ways to combat seasonal allergies that will benefit you in the long run.
There are simpler ways to keep allergies at bay and one of the best places to start is at home. Be conscious of the pollen count. Pollen.com is a great resource during allergy season and can help you track exactly when allergy season begins and the intensity of the pollen count in your area. Keep seasonal allergies out of the house by opening windows during the late afternoon. Many people make the mistake of opening them in the morning to let fresh air in but the pollen count in the air is highest between 5 and 10 a.m. During the day it is best to keep the air conditioner on and then get the fresh air later in the day. Another common mistake people make is doing laundry outdoors. Do all your laundry indoors and do it frequently. Pollen collects on clothing when outdoors so it’s best to skip the line-dry and use the indoor dryer instead.
Along with pollen, mold is another big catalyst for seasonal allergies. Spring cleaning is a good time to head to the kitchen and get molded items out of the refrigerator. Avoid an unexpected allergy flare up and get a clean refrigerator. Another way to avoid allergens in spring cleaning is to change your vacuum filter to a double or micro filter bag. This will pick up any allergens that are trapped in your carpet and reduce the amount that gets leaked back into the room air. Spring cleaning in the home is a great way to protect the body from allergens in the long run.
Protecting the body from seasonal allergies does not end when you step out the door, but seasonal allergies can still be kept at a distance by switching up daily eating and exercising habits. Next time grocery shopping needs to be done, look for foods that are high in quercetin.
Quercetin has natural anti-inflammatory properties; foods such as red grapes, raspberries and cranberries, red onions, black and green tea, and green leafy veggies are all high in this substance. It’s also best to put down the sugar, dairy, and carbs. These types of products all assist the body in forming mucus! The best way to flush out excess mucus is to drink water. If you’re feeling brave, use a neti pot to pour water into one nostril and let it run out through the other to seriously flush out any excess mucus. Another easy way to stay away from allergies is to change exercise routines. With pollen emissions at their highest between 5 and 10 a.m., switch up your daily workout by exchanging a morning workout for one in the late afternoon. By staying in tune with the body you can successfully avoid severe seasonal allergies.
The most important part of keeping seasonal allergies away is by keeping your mind consciously aware of their existence. Many people forget that the change in seasons require a lifestyle changes as well. As soon as you contract symptoms start taking medications to alleviate them. Attacking symptoms when they are mild will bring you a shorter recovery period. Delaying medications makes it harder for your body to get back to a balanced state.
Along with spring cleaning and modifying both diet and exercise, many people turn to medications and air filters to alleviate symptoms. With the Airocide air purifier, fighting allergies this spring just got a lot easier. After 12 years of testing and FDA approval, Airocide may help decrease allergy symptoms in homes all across the country. With the use of technology developed by NASA, this isn’t your average air filter. In fact, it’s not an air filter; the Airocide air purifier eliminates airborne pathogens with nanotechnology by attracting air and removing the pathogens on contact. Purified air that is free of common allergy triggers such as pollen, mold, dust, and bacteria is the only thing emitted from an Airocide air purifier.