Thursday, April 5, 2012

A-A-A-ACHOO!!!!

Nothing says spring like watery eyes and sneezing. Two of my children react to seasonal allergies while my other two aren't affected by them.

The very first thing I try to do is keep their immune system built up.

Elderberry: PERFECT for cold and flu season! It can help reduce the severity of a cold or flu by reducing congestion. These berries also contain vitamin C, A, and B. There are many, many uses for the elderberry and can be taken in a variety of ways (teas, syrups, etc). I bring this out anytime anyone starts to feel sick, even in the slightest form. It's a great immune booster. Anytime you have allergies or colds, your immune system is compromised. Elderberry, with it's vitamin C, will help! When they start to struggle with their allergy symptoms or they've played outside a lot and there's potential for an attack I boost their immunity with some elderberry. We really love Sambucus For Kids, but you can also make your own syrup using fresh/dried elderberries. I just haven't ever gotten around to making my own. Elderberries have many wonderful purposes, one being a great immunity booster.


Vitamin C: Helps with healing. Found in fresh fruits (like citrus), berries, green vegetables, tomatoes (and the list goes on...). This vitamin helps resist infection. The common cold and any other time your immune system is compromised this vitamin is going to help your body fight. My kids take a daily chewable vitamin C as does my husband and I (along with our multi-vitamin). Anytime we stat to feel bad we up our vitamin C dose. The kids take between 500-1000mg of vitamin C a day when they feel "off". Your body can't fight anything- cold or allergies- with a weakened system. By multi-vitamin, I don't mean a Flintstone vitamin either. I'm talking about one that doesn't contain artificial dyes or flavors. You do have to search for them, but it's worth it! You can even find ones that contain whole foods. You have to find one that fits your family, but just because someone puts "vitamin" on the label doesn't automatically make it healthy! I'm sorry... the vitamins lose some of their healthiness when they are coated with yellow #6!


I also begin them on a teaspoon of honey a day! It isn't just any honey, it's local, raw honey!

Another item I keep on hand specifically for allergy season is a bottle of Nettles & Eyebright. I buy it specifically for kids, because that's who uses it, but you can buy it for adults. You might even be fortunate enough to make your own tinctures! One of the benefits of nettles is that they are rich in Vitamin C and we know how good vitamin C is for you. They are also rich in Vitamin A, iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. History shows nettles being used to help treat coughs. The real helper is eyebright. Eyebright contains several B Vitamins as well as vitamins A, D, E, and, my favorite, C! It's astringent properties is what helps relieve excess mucus and infectious conditions typically associated with allergies- or colds.

Tea is another item we use especially during allergy season. My youngest isn't too fond of different teas, but my oldest will drink them willingly. Her personal favorite is peppermint tea. Peppermint tea has many wonderful uses and one of them is to help clear congestion and coughs related to allergies (and colds)! An even better choice would be some chamomile tea. However, I do know that if you are allergic to ragweed, chamomile tea is probably not for you. Chamomile helps to relax, so it's a great tea to drink even if there aren't allergies involved. You can drink it for an upset stomach, to help relieve insomnia, menstrual cramps (because it relaxes the uterus), etc...

I am not a medical doctor, nor do I play one on TV. Please use your own wisdom and research what works best for you and your family. Even natural items can interfere with other medicines...

How do you fight seasonal allergies?

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