Thursday, April 14, 2011

Ah, Spring

Warmer weather, fresh veggies, flowers blooming everywhere, and...and...and...ACHOO!  Oh, yeah.  Pollen.

That yellow stuff has a nasty habit of clinging to cars, patio furniture, swing sets, that book that I left outside this morning - everything.  I went outside the other day, sat down on the deck for a few minutes to read and enjoy the sun after three days of rain, and my black tank top was promptly covered in pollen.  When I went to brush it off, I sneezed.  A lot.  Nothing unusual there.  My mom and I both start sneezing and getting headaches at the beginning of spring.  But later that day, my friend's dad told us that a teaspoon of honey can help with hay fever.  (Ironically, hay fever usually has nothing to do with hay.  It's caused by an allergic reaction to some kinds of pollen, generally ragweed.  For a good description of ragweed, click here)  That got me interested in all-natural remedies for "allergic rhinitis."  Turns out, there are all kinds of cures that don't involve Benedryl, which makes me kind of sleepy.  Not good for doing schoolwork.

  1. Like I said, honey can help hay fever.  Apparently, this is because of the little traces of pollen left in it from when it's made.  So, every time you eat it, it builds up your immune system.  Of course, this works best if you have local honey, because then you have the same pollen in your honey that's making you sneeze.  And then there are all the other reasons local food is great.
  2. If you have a clothesline, that's awesome.  I've wanted one for forever.  Anyway, clotheslines are great, but during the spring, you don't want to be hanging your clothes outside if you have a pollen allergy.  Your clothes will wind up full of the stuff.  So hang up your clothesline, just until hay fever season's over.  (If you absolutely refuse to use a dryer, use a set of bars over a heat vent or in a sunny window.)
  3. Take a shower every night before you go to bed, just to get rid of all that pollen stuck in your hair or clinging to your skin.  You could use an air purifier, too, if your allergies are really bad.  Or if you hate being unable to breathe, like me.
Of course, there are also lots of herbal remedies you can try.  Click here for some more information on them.

So hopefully I've given you some good advice on how to fight hay fever.  I have just one thing left to say:  Gesundheit!