Spring is a delightful thing. But for many of us, the season of new beginnings and budding flowers also means the dreaded return of annoying allergies.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are an estimated 24.4 million Americans suffering from hay fever symptoms, which include itchy and red eyes, runny noses, and consistent sneezing. Luckily, there are some easy-to-implement natural remedies that can help.
At my Chicago clinic, REMIX Acupuncture + Integrative Health, we offer treatments and supplements rooted in traditional East Asian medicine. A lot of our “herbs” are actually foods such as berries, and other organic ingredients like leaves, sticks, roots, and twigs. Below are some of my favorite allergy remedy suggestions from the herbal pharmacopeia cabinet.
Pear juice for seasonal allergies
Technically this is an Eastern nutritional suggestion, but I can’t stress it enough: one glass of pear juice each morning can help to moisten the lungs and keep congestion at bay.
Miso soup for seasonal allergies
Miso soup has two Chinese herbal medicine ingredients in it for venting pathogens. I like to have it when allergies are kicking up because it helps to keep them from getting out of control. The powerful ingredients in miso soup are fermented soybeans (also known as miso) and scallions.
REMIX WOOD Element face serum for seasonal allergies
According to the elements of traditional East Asian medicine, the spring season corresponds to wood. Our five Element face serums follow this flow; like eating food that is in season, I like changing up my skincare to be in sync with the transitions. Our WOOD serum is blended with organic essential oils like fresh melissa and cooling Peppermint, and is especially good for acne-prone skin.
Mushroom supplements for seasonal allergies
Mushrooms like reishi are highly immune-supportive. Taking a comprehensive mushroom supplement like Stamets7 can strengthen and ground your immune system so that it doesn’t go off the rails when it’s exposed to an irritant.
Mint tea with local honey for seasonal allergies
Mint is a major herb for cooling inflammation and venting heat; it’s also amazing at clearing a scratchy or sore throat. Make a mug of a mint tea and add a spoonful of local honey to soothe any throat hoarseness. It’s good to choose local honey, because that means you’re ingesting local pollen—which works to build your immune system in regards to the specific natural environment you live in.
Chrysanthemum tea for seasonal allergies
This is a go-to for itchy, red eyes. In traditional East Asian medicine, the eyes correspond to the liver meridian, and the liver meridian can get easily irritated by the spring season. A nice chrysanthemum tea can help clear the eyes; add in some local honey supercharge this healing ritual and get you back to feeling your best.