As the grass starts to grow, the flowers bloom, and the pollen flies, many start to experience the effects of seasonal allergies. Hay fever affects roughly 1 in 5 individuals, and so we have written up a list of medicinal herbs that are shown to help reduce signs and symptoms of inflammation, histamine response, congestion and more. While herbal remedies are not guaranteed to treat hay fever symptoms, they have been shown to relieve symptoms effectively.
Stinging Nettle ~ A fresh tincture, fresh or dried tea, or fresh steamed leaves can alter the body's histamine response to relieve seasonal allergies. Nettle can be effective in reducing inflammation to the upper respiratory tract, ease coughing, congestion, sneezing, and itching. It is an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and is wonderful for supporting immune function, its antihistamine effects, as well as its ability to decrease allergy symptoms by decreasing inflammation in the body.
Chamomile ~ Chamomile is a natural antioxidant and antihistamine. The dried flowers can be steeped in a bowl of hot water as a steam, or in a cup to sip as a tea. A chamomile steam, breathed deeply into the nose, helps to reduce pain and relieve congestion.
To prepare a steam combine ½ cup of dried or fresh flowers to 3 cups of boiling water in a bowl. Drape a towel over your head, and breath in the steam for up to 10 min, taking breaks when needed. This can be done 2-3x/day.
A tea to sip can be brewed for its healing, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. Brew 2 tsp fresh or dried flower per one cup of boiling water. Steep covered, and enjoy 1-3 cups/day. Sipping the tea will help to clear nasal and sinus passages, fight infection, and reduce inflammation of mucous membranes.
Mullein ~ Mullein is known to be used in hot, dry respiratory conditions such as hay fever, laryngitis, whooping cough, asthma, and bronchitis. The tea or tincture moistens mucous membranes, reducing inflammation, and stimulating the flow of mucous to clear and open the lungs and sinuses.
Rosemary ~ Rosemary is a common culinary herb, but also has incredible medicinal properties. It has been found to have anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant effects. Rosemary has been found to reduce inflammation caused by allergies, as well as improve symptoms of asthma. It can be steeped as a tea, and enjoyed 1-3 times per day.
Ginger ~ Ginger is a culinary and medicinal herb that can effectively treat hay fever. It’s anti-inflammatory nature can reduce nasal swelling, and it is a natural antihistamine, which is known for boosting the immune system. Chewing fresh ginger root, or sipping tea three times per day until recovery can be effective in relieving cough, runny nose, and headache symptoms. Ginger contains warming, stimulating, and antiviral actions, and helps to thin and move mucous in the respiratory system.
When using medicinal herbs, always take caution. Start with small amounts in order to feel your body’s response to them, consult a healthcare professional, and always ensure that your herbs and teas are of good quality. Buying from a trusted local company, like New Moon Tea Co ensures that your herbs are of highest quality, and it supports local small businesses. Always ensure that your herbs are grown and harvested with care, and if they are wildcrafted ensure that those harvesting them have consulted the indigenous groups in your area, and have been given permission to harvest such medicinals.
Written by; Violet Johnson for New Moon Tea Co.