It has been a long winter.
There was ice on top of ice, and when one layer thawed, the ground was still solid. The sky was grey, and it took everything not to dial everything in and surrender to the sweet call of Netflix. It is the human version of hibernating.
Thank goodness spring always comes. Some years, spring butts head with summer and brings the sizzle right after the frost. Most of us take this time to bow to the sun god — in our own way, of course. I like to do so under the safety of an umbrella with SPF50.
Except…if you suffer from allergies. Then the renewed season brings trepidation. Trees, grasses and weeds release pollen and it can seem like Mother Nature is out to get you.
My partner is one of the Kleenex carriers each spring. While in the past, I blamed his red spider-webbed eyes on his work, now I realize that it’s the fault of the blossoming world around him.
Sorry, Great Outdoors – but sometimes I curse you.
If you’re finding yourself relating to the allergy ads that pop up at this time of year, you might be grappling for a solution. Holistic remedies abound…but do they work?
We asked around to see how these common remedies work.
Honey contains traces of the pollen that makes people sick. The theory is that small doses of local honey will get your body used to those snot-inducing substances.
Verdict? I have not met one person who has claimed that this has even helped one iota, even though I have met many people who have tried it. It’s a great idea…in theory.
The first time I heard about neti pots, I was like, “You do what?!” However, this Ayurvedic treatment comes highly recommended by family doctors. It’s an irrigation system of sorts, using salt and water to flush out the nasal passages.
Verdict? It can help. The trick is to not do it all the time, which can remove some of the protective mucous membranes (and who wants that?). Blowing your nose in between sides can help with the – er – clearing. You’ll eventually get over the weird sensation of rinsing your nose with a genie lamp.
This natural compound has been found to fight inflammation and even acts as a natural antihistamine. Quercetin-rich foods include lemons, apples, onions and black tea. If you eat a plant-based diet, chances are that these foods have made their way into your pantry.
Verdict? Questionable. Even the “evidence” only comes from animal or test tube studies. Healthy diets are great, but unfortunately, they can’t cure everything.
Apple Cider Vinegar
I feel like apple cider vinegar is to 2019 what Windex was in My Big Fat Greek Wedding: a cure for everything. You probably assumed it would be on this list and bam, here it is.
Verdict? This proclaimed panacea is not an antihistamine, and there have been few studies backing up its potential. It likely isn’t a solution.
April showers bring May flowers, and for some people, it takes a team to learn how to enjoy those flowers.