Help for Hayfever Sufferers
Hayfever is a seasonal form of allergic rhinitis. Symptoms include itchy,
red sore eyes, frequent sneezing, sinusitis and excess catarrh. The symptoms
can lead the sufferer to become tired, irritated and depressed.
Try to avoid the pollen; the worst times are in the morning and evening
when the most pollen is released. Try not to go into high pollen areas
at these times. Have frequent showers - splashing your face with cold
water and bathing your eyes will help to wash away the irritants.
If you have had hayfever for several years running and/or if the symptoms
are really severe, it is advisable to visit a practitioner. Ideally treatment
should commence before the hayfever season starts. Treatments that would
be suitable are: acupuncture; Chinese
herbs; homeopathy; medical
aromatherapy and shiatsu
offer an excellent supporting treatments where the hayfever is linked
Many symptoms may be brought under control through dietary change
and/or nutritional support. It is always best to get your nutrients
from food but for extra nutritional support choose food state vitamins,
they are more readily absorbed and utilised by the body than ordinary
vitamins. A period of detox or a short fast is highly recommended
to cleanse the system in early spring in preparation for the hayfever
season. See Detoxing and Fasting.
Hayfever sufferers should try to emphasize the following foods in their
Beta carotene rich foods such as the red, orange and yellow fruits
and vegetables are also rich in Bioflavonoids and vitamin C. Hayfever
sufferers require greater amounts of these nutrients. Try to find good
quality food, organic if possible - the vitamin levels will be higher
and it will be free of synthetic pesticide residues.
Supplement your diet with food state beta-carotene and vitamin
C as well as eating these foods (alternatively try the Anti-oxidant
Formula or the Smokers Formula).
Dark green foods are also helpful as they help to eliminate excess
toxins in the body. They also contain large amounts of beta carotene.
Choose dark green leafy salads like watercress, rocket and
chard; vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, freshly
picked nettles, green beans and kale. Seaweeds are
also beneficial due to their high mineral content.
Supplement your diet with spirulina, blue green algae, wheatgrass,
or chlorella as well as including these foods in your diet. See
the Green Superfoods page to see
which one would be suitable for you.
Sprouted seeds and bean sprouts are also very beneficial. Add
to salads and soups.
Garlic helps to reduce excess catarrh, eat two raw cloves a day
(have on toast or stir into food at the end of cooking) or take a garlic
Yoghurt is cooling and has a mild anti-histamine effect, eat plain
unflavoured, organic acidophilus yoghurt in moderate amounts.
Pollen (half a teaspoon a day) is said to help the condition.
Check for an allergic reaction to pollen in this form by taking one pellet
before you try a larger dose. In the unlikely event that you feel any
itching or tingling in your mouth, do not use.
Aloe Vera has mild anti-histamine properties. Take the juice internally
diluted in water. It is also good for the digestion and skin problems.
Used externally (as a gel) it alleviates allergic rashes - pack a tube
of Aloe99 gel for picnics or countryside outings.
Oats are calming to the nervous system and contain significant
quantities of B vitamins and minerals. See Porridge
Recipe. If you are suffering from stress, it is advisable to take
Vitamin B Complex.
Try to have one meal a day that consists of mainly raw or lightly
steamed vegetables and salad ingredients. Combine this with small
amounts of protein, such as nuts, seeds, fish or tofu. Dress salads
with a garlic, olive oil and cider vinegar dressing; flavoured with
local honey and herbs.
Many people notice a marked reduction in symptoms, simply by reducing
their intake of these foods.
Dairy: all dairy produce is mucus forming. In an ideal situation
one would cut it all out, excepting yoghurt, but for many this is very
difficult. Goats, sheep, rice, oat and soya
milk products are preferable to cow's milk products, which should
be avoided totally. The dairy products you do eat should be organic. Eat
dairy in small quantities.
Refined foods: cut out white bread, white rice, white pasta, white
sugar and brown sugar (still a highly refined product). Substitute wholemeal
versions of these foods - for sweetener use Rapadura (dried sugar
cane juice) agave syrup; maple syrup or brown rice syrup.
Processed foods: avoid pre-packaged foods that contain additives
you would not use in your own cooking, (E numbers for example).
Alcohol: if you can't avoid it dilute it with carbonated water
(ideal for white wine and whisky), or alternate each drink with a large
glass of water.
Tea and coffee: regular consumption of caffeine drinks make it
more difficult for the body to cope with stress. They also deplete the
absorption of minerals. Substitute them with Rooibosch tea, green
tea or herbal teas. There are many herbal alternatives to coffee -
dandelion coffee is the nicest tasting and most beneficial to the
Wheat: some people find that avoiding wheat and wheat products
during the hayfever season helps to alleviate symptoms. Check how you
react when eating wheat products. Wheat allergy symptoms include asthma
and itchiness (itchy throat, scalp and skin irritation).
Herbs may be taken as teas, tinctures, juices or capsules. Choose those
which you feel most comfortable with.
Important Note: If you:
- are pregnant, breast feeding or plan to become
- have a long standing illness
- have undiagnosed health problems
- are on medication
it is always best to seek advice from a professional
health practitioner. If taken as directed, herbal and homeopathic
remedies are very safe, but they are powerful medicines. Do not
use them lightly; do not exceed the recommended dose. When self-prescribing,
be aware that you are responsible for your own actions, watch carefully
how you react to the remedies. If you notice any adverse reaction,
stop taking the remedy and seek professional advice. See also
Hayfever Tea: The Haelan Centre mixes a Hayfever Tea (which
is also very good for chesty conditions). Made up of herbs that help to
reduce catarrh and are mildly anti-histamine. The tea contains the following
herbs: Ephedra; Elder Flowers; Eyebright; Euphorbia;
Yarrow; Vervain; Comfrey leaf; Nettle Leaf.
Start drinking this tea as early as possible, preferably before the hayfever
season starts. If you are unused to taking herbal tea see: How
to Make a Herbal Infusion. Take the tea two or three times a day,
every day. For contra-indications see box above. Hayfever tea should not
be taken by people who suffer from high blood pressure or glaucoma.
Other herbal teas: that are beneficial are: Goldenrod,
Chamomile German, Plantain, Lemon Balm and Dandelion
(the roasted root makes an ideal coffee substitute)
Juices: The Schonenberger juices that are beneficial for the condition
are Nettle (stronger anti-histamine action than the tea or tincture);
Ribwort Plantain (particularly good for excess catarrh and wheezing)
Freshly pressed carrot juice is very beneficial as are other freshly pressed
fruits and vegetables.
Tinctures: The Haelan Centre HOlistic Pharmacy offers a specially formulated Allergy Mix which is particularly useful for hayfever symptoms. Other herbs that are useful are Euphrasia (irritated eyes); Goldenseal
or Oregon Grape Root (excess mucous); Plantago (excess mucous
and wheezing); Propolis (irritated throat) Echinacea (immune
system boost); Nettle (itchiness and to support detoxification).
Combination remedies, select only one of the following:
Ephytem Summer months blend for general hayfever symptoms
Lanes Herbalix Specific where there is sinus congestion
Herbetom Pulm is a good choice where there is wheezing, It is gentle
and effective, it may be used from age 3 onwards.
Bioforce's Luffa complex is a homeopathic tincture for hayfever, can
be used for children over 2 years.
Petasites herbal extract of butterbur which has been shown
in a trial to be as effective as anti-histamine medication. Not recommended
for children under 12, unless under the care of a health practitioner.
Eye soothers: Eyebright tea may be used in an eyebath,
see How to make
an eyebath. Alternatively use the Helios Mother TIncture of Euphrasia, use 1 drop to 15ml cooled boiled water. Eupharsia is particularly useful where there is a lot of discharge
from the eyes. Aloe Vera gel may be patted gently around irritated
Essential oils that are suitable for Hayfever sufferers include: Lavender,
Chamomile Roman or German (all calming and anti-inflammatory);
Pine (strengthening and clearing); Juniper (detoxifying);
Eucalyptus - choose the gentler Radiata (clearing); Cedarwood
(good for chesty conditions); Niaouli (particularly good for
sinus congestion); Rosemary (uplifting and clearing).
nose be the guide as to which one would be most beneficial for you. The
oils may be used in burners baths and massage oils or a few drops may
be inhaled from a tissue. Try adding one drop of Niaouli to 5ml of base
oil and massaging into the sinus areas on either side of the nose, the
forehead and where the back of the head meets the neck.
Homeopathy treats the individual
person as opposed to looking at just the physical symptoms. To be sure
a remedy is the right one for you, it might be necessary to visit a homeopath. Deeper constitutional tTreatment is best started before the hayfever season commencesthis will allow your body to becvome more responsive to the remedies mentioned below.
It is not ideal to treat yourself unless you have had the constitutional remedies prescribed, but iIf you wish to treat yourself, try to match the emotional
as well as physical symptoms given for each remedy. You may find that
symptoms get slightly worse before they improve - this is a good sign.
If in doubt, consult a homeopath. Whilst taking homeopathic remedies,
do not drink strong coffee or eat anything with a strong peppermint flavour.
Take the remedies away from food. The following remedies are widely used
for hayfever. Take in the 30th potency, as directed on the label.
||A specific for hayfever where the condition is known
to be an allergic reaction to pollen.
||Where the nose and eyes stream, and sneezing is severe
and frequent. For the person whose symptoms are worse in the morning,
when indoors, when in contact with flowers.
||Where the nose tickles violently and sneezing is also
violent and painful with a watery, "burning" discharge causing
sore lips and nose. The person may feel chilly and restless. May be
pale, angry, anxious, depressed and irritable.
||Particularly where the eyes burn, itch and water Often
with heavy sneezing, sore throat and a hard and dry cough. Nasal symptoms
may be worse at night.
||Where there is violent sneezing and the nose tingles
and streams, particularly in the morning. Face feels hot, eyes heavy,
throat burns and swallowing causes pain in the ears. The body aches
and limbs feel heavy. Fearful, sluggish, depressed but cannot cry.
||Where there is copious catarrh and sneezing, accompanied
by cold sores or mouth ulcers. For the person whose symptoms are worse
in the open air. Absent minded, angry, confused, depressed, introverted,
irritable, sensitive. Tendency to repress emotions.
||Excessive irritation of the nose, eyes, face and throat
with prolonged and distressing bouts of sneezing. The nose may feel
stuffed up at night, and the person feels chilly and irritable. May
be angry, stubborn and impatient.
||Particularly where there is copious thick catarrh and
sneezing. For the person whose symptoms are relieved in the open air.
Changeable moods, clingy, depressed, irritable, shy, gentle, tearful
||Sinusitis with blocked stuffy nose. Symptoms often worse
on waking. Restless, irritable, jumpy, sluggish, sensitive to noise
The twelve biochemic tissue salts correspond to the principle inorganic
materials found in the body. They are prepared homeopathically and are
used in a similar way to homeopathic medicines. Like the above homeopathic
remedies, they may be used safely by pregnant or nursing women and children.
||Congestion, headaches, inflamed, burning sensations
||For thick catarrh and swollen glands
||Helps with wheezing and spasmodic cough. Also useful
for treating the fatigue induced by the allergy and nourishes the
||For copious watery discharge, sneezing and watery eyes
||A general biochemic remedy for hayfever
Flower essences help to treat the emotional symptoms associated with hayfever.
The choice will be different for each individual. Below are some flower
remedies that are common choices for hayfever sufferers.
||This is the most important flower remedy for hayfever
it is for intolerance both physical and emotional. It is important
to note that the emotional intolerance may be repressed and not readily
apparent. Beech is often combined with Holly for extreme allergic
||Use to aid the detox process, helps to cleanse the blood.
||For fits of sneezing and feeling irritated, angry and
||For people who are always in a rush, impatient, nervous,
fidgety and itchy.
||For tiredness due to overwork, physical and emotional
||To treat stress, nervousness and tension. For people
who are pushy and excessively enthusiastic.
||For those who are oversensitive to outside influences;
lack inner stability; find it hard to give up bad habits.
Written by Julia Moore CHEK level 1 Holistic Lifestyle Coach
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