ACHOO! Rona, is that you?

Right now in a grocery store, somewhere in this great country, there's an allergy sufferer doing everything they can to avoid sneezing and coughing while picking a zucchini to roast for dinner. Long gone are the days when it was socially acceptable to direct your allergy-fuel "ACHOO!" into your elbow. In our current worldwide health crisis, the quickest way to clear an aisle at the grocery store is simply for your cough to sound a bit dry. I've found myself holding my breath while searching for goat cheese to quell an oncoming sneeze. 

In all seriousness, spring unleashes buckets of pollen along with all the beautiful blooms. All that pollen can make simple daily tasks feel like you're competing in American Ninja Warrior, just without a large audience of screaming fans. We decided to compile some of our favorite tips for allergy sufferers who want to take a natural approach to combating nature. 

1. Wear a mask. This tip is a BOGO special. The CDC recommends wearing a mask if you have to go in public to help stymie community spread of the coronavirus. Masks go a long way in keeping allergens out of your nasal passages and throat. Remember to wear your mask when going outdoors and when vacuuming inside (I always forget that one until it's too late).

2. Eat fresh! A clinical study found that participants who consumed fresh vegetables, fruits, and nuts were less likely to develop allergy symptoms. For an extra punch, try to consume foods like garlic and turmeric which are anti-inflammatory. My husband and I make a vegan smoothie each morning that incorporates turmeric. In a future post, I will share that recipe! 

3. Stay hydrated! Keeping your body well-hydrated solves a multitude of issues. Allergy sufferers benefit because it helps loosen thick mucus. Hot drinks like tea are extra beneficial because of the steam you inhale while sipping.

4. Remove artificial fragrances from your home. Nowadays the makers of consumer goods have gone bonkers adding synthetic fragrance to nearly every product you purchase for your home. It's difficult to find a darn trash bag that isn't laced with fragrance! These synthetic fragrances are bad news for many reasons, not the least of which is allergies. The use of synthetic fragrances in your home and personal care products actually leads to increased and new allergies. My husband and I have gone to great lengths to ensure the products we use in our home skip synthetic fragrances in favor of natural scents from essential oils and plant materials. You won't find synthetic fragrance in any products we sell. Natural scents are a game-changer for allergies. 

5. Steam! Dry air makes allergies unbearable. We use a vaporizer at home to keep the air moist. There are many options on the market from budget to luxury. We keep it simple and have a Vicks warm air vaporizer. Cool air humidifiers are sometimes a safer option, especially if you have children and/or pets. If you opt for a cool air device, take care to ensure you clean it regularly to prevent mold build up.

6. Diffuse diffuse diffuse! Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Tea Tree, Cedarwood... the list goes on. Along with buckets of pollen, nature has gifted us many natural remedies that help us maintain our health without unnecessary chemicals. Diffusing essential oils is an easy and safe way to fill the air around you with clean botanicals that can help fight germs, relieve congestion, and lift your mood. Our Breathe essential oil blend was developed specifically for allergy sufferers. We diffuse it next to our bed at night during allergy season. In combination with extra pillows and the moist air from our vaporizer, the Breathe blend helps us get to sleep when congestion would have us up for hours. Be sure to always diffuse essential oils using a cool mist diffuser. Heating essential oils destroys their therapeutic value. 

We hope some of these tips are helpful for you. With some simple natural remedies we can all feel a little bit better while enjoying this wonderful time of year. We'd love to hear any natural allergy remedies you love. You can leave ideas below in the comments. 

until next time,

-Ben Willard

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