The vibrant blooming of flowers and lush foliage of leaves on shrubs and trees heralds the arrival of spring. While the pleasant warm weather in springtime is indeed a welcome break from the freezing cold surroundings in winter, alas, the change in seasons also brings with it a plethora of health problems, the foremost of them in spring being dust allergies.
Owing to the several types of particulate matter in the atmosphere such as chemical pollutants and sand/gravel residues, vast amounts of dust accumulate and float about. When people inhale the air around them, it invariably causes these dust particles to enter their respiratory tracts via their nostrils and induce allergic reactions. Ayurveda, the time-tested practice of Indian medicine that originated thousands of years ago, states that dust particles aggravate the Kapha dosha in the human body, which in turn results in an imbalance of the three doshas – Vata, Pitta, Kapha. This triggers immune reactions and results in the accrual of Ama toxins in the system, which give rise to discomforting symptoms. These comprise sinus infections and inflammation – sinusitis, hay fever and allergic rhinitis, congestion of the nasal and throat passages, sneezing, coughing and continuous itching, irritation of the nose and throat.
Undoubtedly, the persistent and annoying symptoms of dust allergies hamper the productivity of the affected person at work and home, making it difficult to even carry out simple tasks without coughing and sneezing constantly. However, there is no need to worry, for Ayurveda provides spectacular natural solutions to the rather common and unavoidable problem of dust allergies in springtime. Proven herbs recommended in the age-old ayurvedic scriptures are imbued with anti-allergic, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial qualities that effectively help in fighting dust allergy symptoms and clearing nasal and throat congestion.
Astonishing Herbs To Combat Dust Allergies:
Called “Krishna Jeeraka” in Sanskrit, black cumin or kalonji is a storehouse of antimicrobial agents that thwart infection and inflammation in the respiratory tract. A proven herbal remedy for allergic rhinitis is black cumin seed oil, which when applied and massaged on the nose and throat twice a day aids in decongestion of the nasal and oral passages, relieves clogged sinuses and minimises persistent coughing, sneezing due to allergens.
Known as “Madhu” in Sanskrit, honey has been used since time immemorial as a traditional remedy for respiratory complaints and breathing difficulty. This viscous natural sweetener is a storehouse of phytonutrients with expectorant properties. Mixing 2 tsp of honey in a glass of warm water and consuming it once daily aids in removing accrued mucus in the upper respiratory tract and the lungs.
Turmeric, designated as “Haridra” in Sanskrit, is a powerful spice that works as a panacea for myriad health issues, including dust allergy symptoms. Housing profuse amounts of curcumin, a plant-based compound with strong anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric reduces constant coughing and swelling from environmental irritants. Drinking a glass of warm turmeric milk at night before bedtime works wonders in banishing dust allergies.
This tiny green bounty called “Amalaki” in Sanskrit and Indian Gooseberry in English comprises profuse amounts of anti-allergic and antimicrobial compounds, that significantly thwart respiratory infections. Consuming a tonic prepared from 1 fresh amla fruit crushed to derive the juice, with 1 tsp cinnamon powder in warm water once a day works wonders in fighting off pathogenic bacteria in the nasal and throat passages and relieving allergy symptoms.
Containing ample volumes of cooling bioactive components as well as antimicrobial elements, tulsi is an age-old home remedy for a host of respiratory complaints, including dust allergies. Boiling the leaves in warm water, distilling the extract to prepare a herbal drink and sipping on this tulsi tea in the evening as part of the regular diet efficiently resolves incessant coughing and headaches and alleviates signs of inflammation and dust allergies.
Echinacea, also known as coneflower, is a well-known herb for boosting the immune system. When you suffer from dust allergies, your immune response may need a little nudge. Echinacea helps fortify your body's defences, making it better equipped to fend off allergens. You can consume it as a tea or in supplement form.
Butterbur is a potent herb that acts as a natural antihistamine. It can help reduce the production of histamines, which are responsible for many allergy symptoms like sneezing and itching. This herb is available in various forms, including capsules and extracts.
Nettle leaf, or stinging nettle, is a versatile herb. It acts as a natural decongestant, helping to relieve stuffy noses and congestion that often accompany dust allergies. You can brew nettle leaf tea or find it in supplement form.