How To Hack Your Allergies Naturally
Seasonal allergies plagued me for over a decade. Trust me when I say I’m no stranger to tissues stuffed in my nostrils and the shakes you get from taking over the counter and prescription antihistamines. If you’re reading this article then I assume you are just as fed up with allergies as I was a few years ago. OTC and prescription allergy medication may “work” but let’s be real, the side effects are dreadful and they will cause damage to your body if taken for long periods of time.
The following list includes natural supplements and protocols that I have found to be incredibly effective at significantly reducing your allergy symptoms or completely ridding you of them altogether.
What it is: Quercetin is a flavonoid that is prominently found in colored fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, kale, dark berries, and red onions. It is also available in supplement form.
How it works: Mast cells release histamines when you come into contact with an allergen. Histamines provoke an inflammatory response in the affected area of your body. This is why during allergy season you sneeze, get a runny nose, itchy/watery eyes, and respiratory issues. Studies show that Quercetin stabilizes mast cells that release histamine in your body making it a very effective natural antihistamine. Several animal studies suggest that Quercetin may offer a bronchial dilating effect which is a great bonus for those who suffer from seasonal allergies & asthma.
Note: I start taking Quercetin as soon as I feel allergies coming on. I take one 500mg capsule first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and take up to 3 more throughout the day depending on how severe my allergies are. As soon as my symptoms disappear I stop taking the supplement. Dosage is different for everyone as we are all so different. Please do your research or speak with your holistic/functional medicine doctor and figure out what will work best for you.
Quercetin Warning: People with kidney disease and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should not take Quercetin.
Support the Liver for Allergies
So, your liver processes pretty much everything that your body deals with as its the major cleansing and detoxification organ of the body. If you have a sluggish, overloaded liver, you won’t remove toxins properly. This can cause your immune system to become over stimulated. The liver is also responsible for breaking down histamine. So, if you have an overloaded toxic liver then the histamine is not broken down properly and builds up in your body making your allergy symptoms worse & last longer.
How it works: Liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. It is packed with iron, vitamin A and B vitamins. The B vitamins that are found in liver, specifically folate, aid in cellular function by supporting your body’s detox pathways.
Liver Supplementation Warning: Pregnant women should carefully watch their intake of liver because it is so high in vitamin A. High doses of vitamin A (from liver) while pregnant may cause congenital disabilities, especially during the first trimester.
What it is: NAC is a form of the essential amino acid cysteine. NAC is a precursor to glutathione, your body’s master antioxidant. Unfortunately, glutathione supplements are not absorbed properly in the GI tract because it is destroyed by stomach acid. Fortunately, NAC is adequately absorbed and is the preferred supplement for boosting the blood levels of glutathione.
How it works: NAC controls the expression of genes that affect the inflammatory process in your body. It acts as an anti-inflammatory and can slow down or completely reverse chronic inflammatory conditions. It works as a natural decongestant by thinning the mucus in the sinus and respiratory system as well as protecting liver cells and aiding in ridding the body of toxins.
What it is: Milk thistle is a flowering herb that grows all over the world. It gets its name from the milky liquid that comes out when it is crushed.
How it works: Studies show that silymarin (aka silibinin), inhibits the release of histamine. Silibinin is one of the main components of milk thistle and is known to balance liver enzyme levels, detoxify the liver thus improving liver performance. When the liver is functioning correctly, it can process histamine properly.
Support the Thymus for Allergies
Your thymus gland is an essential part of your immune system. The primary function of this gland is to promote the development of T cells, the type of white blood cells that protects the body from threats like viruses and infections. Once you hit puberty, the thymus starts to shrink, and from there the T cells leave the gland via your blood vessels to the lymph nodes and spleen where they fight off infection.
What it is: Thymus supplements comes from the thymus glands of calves.
How it works: For many centuries, animal glands have been used to support human health, and it is based on the belief that “like heals like.” One of the best ways to support your thymus gland is to consume proteins that are found in the organ itself. Additionally, thymus gland contains Thymosin is which is a hormone that stimulates the development of disease-fighting T cells. When you support your thymus gland, you can fight off allergy symptoms and respiratory infections.
Support the Gut for Allergies
Eliminate dairy, gluten and refined sugar from your diet.
How it works: Dairy, gluten and refined sugar have been proven to disrupt your immune system. Dairy is mucous forming and can make your allergy symptoms much worse. Gluten is not appropriately processed in our digestive system which in turn disrupts the intestinal barrier. When your intestinal wall is compromised, it can become permeable thus allowing unwanted food particles into the bloodstream, and eventually creates an immune response. Refined sugar spikes blood sugar. Frequent blood sugar fluctuations can affect histamine levels irritating your allergy symptoms even further.
Eliminate food sensitivities from the diet.
How it works: If you are consistently eating foods that create inflammation in your body, then you will have a weakened immune system. Allergies are linked to inflammation. If you want to reduce allergy symptoms, then you need to work on reducing the inflammation in your body.
What it is: Probiotics are live microorganisms that can improve or restore the gut flora.
How it works: Approximately 70 percent of your immune system resides in your gut, and a robust microbiome—a good balance of intestinal bacteria—is critical for all aspects of health. Studies show that supplementing with probiotics had a treatment effect on allergies resulting in a reduction of overall hay fever symptoms.
Apple Cider Vinegar (with the “Mother”)
What it is: Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is unfiltered, unheated and unpasteurized. ACV is made from apples and yeast and then fermented. ACV contains the amazing Mother of Vinegar which occurs naturally as strand-like enzymes of connected protein molecules. Apple Cider Vinegar has been highly regarded throughout history. Hippocrates, Father of Medicine, used it for its amazing health qualities.
How it works: ACV contains prebiotics thanks to the “mother” that floats around in the bottom of the bottle. So make sure you shake your bottle of ACV well to mix the “mother” solution evenly. Prebiotics nourish the friendly bacteria (aka probiotics) that are already in residing in your gut.
Dosage: During allergy flare-ups I put 1-2 tablespoons in a glass and fill it to the top with water. Ill take it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and then again midday and in the evening.
Head over to my shop page to see direct links to the exact supplements that helped me hack my allergies naturally.