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Spring is here, and so are the allergies: Which natural remedies are best for fighting back?

Seasonal allergies

(NaturalNews) Fifty million Americans suffer from allergies, approximately 26 million of whom experience the dreadful seasonal variety. If you're among them, you know how awful it feels; while the rest of the world seems to enjoying all the flower-blooming, leaf-changing splendor, you're doing anything but. You're miserable, facing everything from excessive sneezing to a stuffy head and watery eyes.

Basically, what's happening is that a histamine-triggering agent like pollen makes its way to your nasal and bronchial passages. It latches on to the soft mucous membranes in these areas, ultimately setting off a host of reactions due to the release of histamine and other chemicals. In turn, you sneeze more and your eyes become watery and itchy.

To remedy the annoying problem, it's no secret that Americans often turn to antihistamines and decongestants. However, as Natural News readers are well aware, reaching for OTC drugs or using a Big Pharma-prescribed medication isn't the answer. More often than not, they only mask a health problem rather than improve it naturally in a healthy manner. In fact, according to the Mayo Clinic, antihistamines in young children can produce everything from nightmares to a spike in blood pressure; in older adults, they can lead to painful urination, seizures and confusion.

So, what's the best way to improve seasonal allergies naturally, without the worry of Big Pharma dangers?

How to improve seasonal allergy symptoms naturally

Turn to these healing suggestions to get back on track in no time.

1. Neti pot
Successfully used in India for thousands of years, neti pots help flush sinuses and deliver allergy relief. Simply mix a quarter to a half teaspoon of non-iodized table salt with one cup of lukewarm water and pour it into the pot. Lean over a sink or other place with sufficient drainage (some people prefer to do this while showering), then turn your head to the side. At this point, put the neti pot's spout in one nostril and slowly pour. The water will drain out the other nostril. Then switch sides and repeat, alternating nostrils. Blow your nose when you're finished to completely clean out your nasal passageways.

2. Quercetin

If you're not getting this incredible antioxidant in your food supply, you're missing out. When it comes to allergies, it has the ability to help prevent cells from releasing histamine. Onions, citrus fruits, parsley, broccoli and apples are a few examples of quercetin sources. You can also ingest it as a supplement; use about 1,000 milligrams for it to be most effective.

3. Omega-3s and other allergy-fighting foods
Studies have found that people who ate foods high in omega-3 fatty acids were less likely to experience annoying allergy symptoms than people who didn't eat them. Foods like cold-water fish, walnuts and flax seeds are ideal omega-3 sources. Additionally, adding a small amount of horseradish, chili peppers or hot mustard to foods can temporarily reduce congestion.

4. Stinging Nettle
This weed, also known as Urtica dioica, is found throughout the United States and has been found to be effective in blocking histamine production. It's typically in the form of a capsule, which houses freeze-dried extract of the leaves. Opt for about 300 milligrams daily to obtain the most relief.

Other easy ways to keep annoying allergy symptoms at bay

Additional ways to keep seasonal allergies at bay include keeping the windows closed while driving and not using window fans to cool rooms. In both instances, pollen is drawn inside, where it can cause an allergic reaction.

The American Academy of Otolaryngology also suggests wearing a dust mask when mowing or cleaning indoors, regularly changing filters in air conditioners, heating and vacuum systems, and removing carpets from bedrooms.

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