Natural Ways to Manage Seasonal Allergies

You know it’s allergy season when those familiar symptoms return — the itchy, watery eyes; runny or stuffy nose, and sore throat. When temperatures begin to warm up, pollen and related seasonal allergies can flare up.

Fortunately, there are a number of natural remedies and dietary approaches for seasonal allergies, whether you are looking to relieve symptoms, manage their severity or even help prevent them. Here are our top picks:

Buy local, raw honey

It is believed that eating raw, local honey (containing small amounts of pollen) may actually help you build up your immunity before symptoms occur, and therefore provide relief once allergy season begins.

Eat well to stave off allergies

There seems to be a link between diet and nasal allergies, with diets higher in fresh vegetables, fruits and nuts corresponding to fewer allergy symptoms in those studied. A plant-based diet has many health benefits, including giving our immune system an overall boost.

Add Quercetin

In particular, certain foods containing a heart-healthy, anti-inflammatory flavonoid called quercetin may offer a protective effect in blocking histamine’s effects before they arise. Foods that contain quercetin include tea, onions, grapes, apples and tomatoes. Your naturopathic doctor may also suggest taking a quercetin supplement, together with Vitamin C.

Eliminate food triggers

Foods which trigger food intolerances and allergies may also contribute to the impact of seasonal allergies. Dairy, for example, can increase mucus production, adding to your seasonal allergy woes. To be certain what your triggers are so you can avoid them, consider a laboratory assessment for food intolerances.

Some experts also suggest avoiding melon, banana, cucumber, sunflower seeds and chamomile, if allergic to ragweed, pollen or other weed pollens.

Drink more fluids – Keep hydrated

Drinking more water, as well as teas, broths and soups, can help reduce nasal congestion and postnasal drip.

Consider herbal remedies

Herbal remedies such as butterbur and licorice may be effective in reducing allergy symptoms. There are some contraindications however, so always speak to your naturopathic doctor first before incorporating in treatment regimen.

Try nasal rinses

You can purchase a neti pot at your local health food store and many drug stores. These work by flushing out dust and pollen and cleaning mucus from the nose, rinsing away bacteria, and helping decrease postnasal drip.

Inhaling steam is another good option for opening sinus passages. Sit at a safe distance from a bowl of hot water with a towel over your head to trap the steam. To boost effectiveness, add a few drops of an essential oil such as eucalyptus to the water.

Allergy-proof your home

Pollens and ragweed can quite easily find their way into your home. To minimize the spread of these and other allergens from the outside in:

  • Take off your shoes right away as you enter the house.
  • Wash clothing that may have come into contact with pollen.
  • Shower after longer periods being outside (and if you’re out mowing the lawn, consider wearing a hospital grade respirator mask to block tiny allergen particles).
  • Keep windows and doors closed as much as possible during peak allergy season.
  • Use a HEPA filter and remember to replace it as needed.
  • Regularly vacuum rugs and furniture, and damp-mop floors, to remove allergens.
  • Clean with natural products such as lemon, vinegar and baking soda.
  • Avoid chemical fragrances, aerosol sprays and other fumes that can aggravate symptoms.


Our NEX Wellness naturopaths in Burlington and Binbrook offer naturopathic care to help prevent, reduce and manage seasonal allergies; as well as laboratory assessment of food sensitivities and allergies. Call or email us for to book your appointment today.