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Natural Options to Address Seasonal Allergies
By Jennifer Morganti, ND, NEEDS Director of Education

Spring can be a frustrating time for battling drippy noses, sneezing, and watery eyes from seasonal allergies. Over-the-counter medications can cause drowsiness and other side effects. Fortunately, there are some very effective natural options available.

When exploring natural allergy relief, look for herbs or nutrients that stabilize mast cells (the cells which cause an inflammatory immune response). Some effective products help improve the integrity of the mucous membranes in the nasal passage or provide general immune support. Also, the adrenals and liver are involved; the liver helps break down allergens and excrete them and the adrenals help modulate the immune response. Most natural options are most effective if you take the product daily as a preventative measure, rather than acutely or only as needed.

Herbs such as turmeric, nettle, bayberry, eyebright, yarrow, and goldenseal are excellent choices to help stabilize mast cells and shore up mucous membranes. Quercetin, a flavonoid found in many plants, is especially effective for allergy symptom overload because it stabilizes mast cell membranes and prevents the release of histamine and other inflammatory agents. Due to its antioxidant effect, quercetin can inhibit inflammatory processes mediated by leukotrienes, hyaluronidase (collagen-destroying enzymes), and lysosomal enzymes (promoters of localized inflammation).

Tinospora cordifolia and Chinese Skullcap, found in Innate Response Formulas Allergy Response, have been traditionally integrated into nutritional protocols that aim to support healthy immune reactions. Tinospora cordifolia is an herb used in traditional Indian (Ayurvedic) medicine for supporting longevity and immune function. Chinese Skullcap, Scutellaria baicalensis, has also demonstrated a profound ability to maintain healthy inflammation and histamine levels. The vitamin C in this formula includes the FoodState vitamin C, which utilizes fresh oranges, and is concentrated with a nutrient preservation process to create a complete whole food nutrient.

QBC Plex from Solaray contains a synergistic anti-inflammatory combination of quercetin, bromelain, and vitamin C. These flavonoids are intended to provide nutritive support to help maintain normal capillary permeability. Bromelain is the enzyme from pineapple that helps break down irritating proteins. Another interesting product is AllQlear by Integrative Therapeutics. It's a fastacting seasonal support made from a proprietary blend of quail egg, which contains ovomucoids that provide a unique mechanism to support healthy stabilization of mast cells. AllQlear is a chewable tablet with a light vanilla flavor sweetened with sorbitol.

Related Products
AllQlear Berry Flavored
Fresh Raw Freeze-Dried Stinging Nettle 300 mg
QBC Plex