When spring finally arrives, so do your allergies! Due to this many of us have grown accustomed to being on guard during this time of the year. However, we tend to overlook the fact that a potent type of pollen can also cause problems during late summer and fall.
Ragweed pollen usually kicks in during the month of September, affecting about 23 million Americans with ragweed allergy, also known as “hay fever”. With 17 different species of ragweed, this can be found in all 50 states in the United States, and produces a powder-like pollen from August to November.
Since it can be triggered during several months of the year, as early as mid-July, this allergy can interferes with our daily lives in many ways! Ragweed allergy poses such a high risk due to its versatility in terms of growing, and its capability to release as much as a billion grains of pollen just from one plant. Moreover, approximately 75% of individuals suffering from seasonal allergies are allergic to ragweed, which is quite a high number!
Climate change as a contributor
It is interesting to note that amount of ragweed pollens were much lower a few decades back– however, due to the frequent changes in the climate, which we have been experiencing over the last few years, pollens now find themselves growing in more places and in larger quantities for longer periods of time. In fact, in Minnesota and Canada the allergy season is now 3 to 4 weeks longer than it used to be.
It is a common misconception that the allergy season is experienced more in rural states, however, numerous urban and suburban citizen are suffering from this as well, since the buildings and pavements in urban cities accumulate more heat, making it more conducive for ragweed pollen to grow.
Suffering from Ragweed allergy can be quite frustrating, some of the symptoms are:
- Nasal congestion
- Persistent sneezing
- Runny nose
- Irritated eyes
- Itchy throat
- Recurring headaches
- Aggravated asthma symptoms such as coughing and wheezing
By avoiding various types of food, such as cucumbers, melons, sunflower seeds, and zucchini, banana, melons, and artichoke, you can actually decrease the severity of your allergy symptoms. This is due to the fact that the proteins found in these foods are similar to those found in the pollens of ragweed. Thus, through consuming the same type of proteins through food, a confusing with the immune system can occur, which can cause an allergic reaction. This response is known as cross-reactivity, or oral allergy syndrome in this case.
Chamomile tea and ragweed
While you may usually seek relief from your symptoms through a nice cup of herbal tea, one specific tea may actually make matters worse for you. Despite, tea is known to be an effective antioxidant and a good companion in digestion, chamomile tea in particular, can enhance your allergy symptoms. This is due to the fact that chamomile and ragweed fall under the same family: Asteraceae. This of course, causes a cross-reactivity within the body.
Natural ways to treat ragweed allergy
Over-the-counter remedies for different types of allergies are readily available anywhere and can solve your problem in no time. Unfortunately, as with most conventional medicine, they come with several side effects depending on how it reacts in your body. So what is the best option to alleviate your allergy symptoms? The following is a list of our best suggestions to combat your ragweed allergy naturally:
Drinks. Just because Chamomile tea poses a threat in your current condition, doesn’t mean you have to steer clear of your favorite drink just yet. Turmeric tea, being one of the most effective anti-inflammatory drinks, is a natural painkiller and can easily assist you in alleviating your symptoms, minus the risk of side effects.
Ample hydration also plays an essential role in allergy treatment and maintenance, since lack of hydration can aggravate your symptoms. Therefore, it is important sure to drink around of 8-10 glasses (depending on your requirements).
Food and digestion. When it comes to food, packing your diet with anti-inflammatory ingredients can make a significant difference. This is, because, they are full of mineral that can fight of allergies. You should try to include more organic veggies, leafy greens, whole grains, and nuts to your diet.
Your gut also spells out a lot of things for you and your allergy triggers, as it is the best place to determine your food sensitivities. If you find persistent symptoms, try an elimination diet, which involves gradually taking out certain types of food from your diet for a few days and slowly reintroducing them to your system to figure out, which foods work for you.
Environmental factors. While the streets are inevitably filled with toxins and pollens to trigger your allergies, which we unfortunately cannot control. There is a place however, which is fully in your control: your home.
Prioritize cleaning your clothes and sheets during the allergy season. Moreover, you should always go for unscented cleaning agents or anything that comes with the least amount of chemicals. Normal laundry liquid and cleaning products are usually filled with toxins that further weaken the immune system. Moreover, avoiding spraying artificial scents around your house, and keep your surroundings clean and spruced up as much as possible. Home should be your comfort zone where you can relax and rejuvenate, without suffering too much from your allergies.
There is no easy way avoid the allergy season, however, there are ways to work around them, which can let you go about your daily activities with less struggle. Keep these tips in mind and conquer your symptoms like a pro!