The Free Allergy Cure That's Backed by Science

Victoria Hoff
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Lisa Says Gah

Spring arrives quite early in southern California, and after all the rain we received in January, the February blooms were gorgeous—and in turn, my hay fever was brutal. After wheezing, sneezing, and sniffling my way through the past couple of months, my symptoms are finally starting to subside—but I feel for my friends in many other parts of the country, for whom allergy season is just getting started.

But while I've always been a proponent of finding allergy relief naturally, said remedies have always involved consuming something, whether it's bee pollen or some kind of similar plant-based supplement. I wasn't aware that there was a much simpler cure available to me this entire time—and what's more, it's backed by extensive research.

It seems quite counterintuitive to breathe through your allergies. ("The whole point is that I currently can't breathe," you're saying.) But according to scientists, forcing yourself to do so is a highly effective way to alleviate your symptoms. And a lot of that stems from the fact that it relieves stress, which only exacerbates the inflammation from hay fever.

"When our stress levels run high, our brain starts telling our body to secrete hormones like cortisol and chemicals like histamine and other neurotransmitters," explains Heather Moday, MD, to MindBodyGreen. "Several studies have shown that this can make us more inflamed, create more congestion in our nasal passages, and even worsen asthma." Basically, if we're sensitive to certain allergens, our body undergoes a release of the chemical histamine, which causes our symptoms. Stress tells the body to release more of that chemical.

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