Little girl is blowing her nose while sitting on green meadowIf you’ve ever attended any of my live workshops or virtual classes, you know that I always teach about the foods, herbs, colors, and spiritual energies that are guided by every season, just like an orchestra is guided by its conductor.

Throughout the Torah, there are countless references to our connection with the natural world.

We have a deep need for this connection on every level of our being.

A Season for “Sowing”

Tu B’shvat fell on January 26th this year, and it marked the beginning of the spring “sowing” season that we’re currently in.

Spring will continue until the 15th of Sivan, or May 24th.

According to the Torah, the spring season is all about “sowing the seeds” of rebirth and allowing ourselves to experience the freshness, the cleansing, the detoxifying, and the deep renewal that is all around us at this time.

But what if you suffer from seasonal pollen allergies?

If you’re sneezing, rubbing your itchy eyes, and wiping your nose all day, you simply will NOT have the “chayos” and energy to experience the fabulous freshness and renewal of the spring “sowing” season. I want to help.

In the United States alone, it’s estimated that a whopping 60 million people suffer from hayfever.

Some of the most pollen-heavy trees in the United States are:

  • Oak
  • Ash
  • Elm
  • Mountain cedar

Pollen from these plants (and many more) increase potency during the spring season.

Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Washington, Utah and California have trees with the highest pollen release in the west. Here, trees like the juniper and acacia start flowering as early as December.

In the south, Florida, Texas, Alabama and Georgia are the hardest hit. The pollen season hits a little later here, around March, and goes on until May. Trees like the Oak, Walnut and Elm abound.

Up north, hayfever hits around April and continues until the end of May. New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey have a peak sneezing season at this time.

So What Is Hay Fever Anyway?

Hayfever is a seasonal form of allergic rhinitis. Symptoms can include itchy, red sore eyes, frequent sneezing, sinusitis and excess mucus. The symptoms can lead the sufferer to become tired, irritated and depressed.

Pollens enter your body and your immune system takes over and does what it can to deal with the “foreign invaders” quickly. This is known as an “allergic” reaction. Your immune system recognizes these pollens as foreign invaders and quickly brings out the “big-guns” to eject them – out of your nose, ears, eyes.

But you need to know that when your immune system is in excellent working order, your body can actually manage these minor “invasions” without experiencing any crisis whatsoever. You can think of hayfever in the same way that you’d think of catching a virus. If you’re living an unhealthy lifestyle, your body will struggle when harmful germs or bugs enter your body. Your immune system simply cannot cope.

It’s Time To Go Back To Traditional Foods As G-d Intended

Our modern food inventions are based on a fast paced lifestyle that is completely disconnected from the natural world. It’s shocking how far we’ve gone, how “ungrounded” our food supply has become.

With neurotoxic chemicals like MSG, aspartame, and artificial colors and flavors, as well as artificial fats and even genetically altered seeds, the time has come to breathe, get grounded, and sit with the principles that our wise ancestors from previous generations understood.

Traditional foods that were enjoyed by our ancestors are the most important tools we have to boost immunity and live healthy, stable, balanced lives today. Traditional preparation techniques have been handed down from generation to generation, but only recently were brushed aside in favor of cheaper, processed foods with a longer shelf life.

Processed foods have led to the multitude of chronic disorders that affect millions in our modern world, and most tragically our younger generations. Lowered immunity and greater sensitivity to allergens are a direct result.

Taking More Pills Won’t Help Us. Eating Real Food Will.

The Torah tells us that Hashem creates the CURE before He creates the disease. The “dis-ease” of modern living is causing an epidemic of lowered immunity for the vast majority of the population, and an unprecedented need for superfoods from around the world. And for the first time ever, we now have access to them.

Extreme-potency superfoods have existed for a select few for thousands of years, but are only NOW available to us all – in this extraordinary time, Hashem has given us the cure for our “extraordinary” needs.

Hayfever symptoms CAN be brought under control through the proper nutritional support. Emphasizing the following superfoods and herbs in your daily meal plan can help get you well on your way to increased immunity and fewer hayfever symptoms – quickly.

Superfoods and Supplements

Beta carotene rich foods such as red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are also rich in bioflavonoids and vitamin C. Hayfever sufferers require greater amounts of these nutrients. Try to find good quality food – organic if possible. The vitamin levels will be higher and it will be free of synthetic pesticide residues, which can harm the liver and lower immunity.

Dark green foods are also helpful as they help to eliminate excess toxins in the body. They also contain large amounts of beta carotene. Choose dark green leafy salads like watercress, rocket and chard; vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, freshly picked nettles, wheatgrass, green beans and kale. Seaweeds are also beneficial due to their high mineral content and detoxifying properties. Supplement your diet with spirulina, blue green algae, or chlorella.

Sprouted seeds and bean sprouts are also very beneficial. Add to salads and soups.

Garlic helps to reduce excess mucus and boosts the immune system. Eat two raw cloves a day (you can stir into food at the end of cooking) or take a garlic supplement.

Probiotic Foods have a mild anti-histamine effect and boost the immune system IMMEASURABLY.

Bee Pollen (half a teaspoon per day) is ironically a well-known traditional remedy for hayfever. But always check for an allergic reaction to pollen granules by taking one pellet before you try a larger dose. In the unlikely event that you feel any itching or tingling in your mouth, do not use this superfood.

Aloe Vera has mild anti-histamine properties, is a potent anti-inflammatory, and boosts the immune system. Take the juice internally diluted in water.

Reduce Mucus Forming Foods

You’ll notice a marked reduction in symptoms by simply by reducing the intake of the following:

Dairy: All dairy is mucus forming. Ideally you’d remove it entirely, excepting small amounts of raw, unsweetened yogurt or kephir.

Refined foods: Cut out white bread, white rice, white pasta, white sugar, and brown sugar (still a highly refined product). Even Rapadura (dried sugar cane juice), agave syrup, maple syrup, and brown rice syrup are processed and mucus forming. Use stevia, licorice root, raw honey, or xylitol instead.

Processed foods: Avoid pre-packaged foods that contain additives that you’d avoid in your own cooking.

Alcohol: If you can’t avoid it dilute with water, or alternate each drink with a large glass of water.

Tea and Coffee: Regular consumption of caffeine drinks make it more difficult for the body to cope with stress. They also deplete the absorption of minerals. Substitute them with Green Tea, Rooibos Tea, or Dandelion Coffee.

Wheat: Some people find that avoiding wheat and wheat products altogether (and in some cases any glutenous grain) during the hayfever season helps to alleviate symptoms.

Aromatherapy

Essential oils that are beneficial for hayfever include: LavenderChamomile Roman or German (all calming and anti-inflammatory); Pine (strengthening and clearing); Juniper (detoxifying); Eucalyptus – choose the gentler Radiata (clearing); Cedarwood (good for chesty conditions); Niaouli (particularly good for sinus congestion); and Rosemary (uplifting and clearing).

Let your intuition be your guide as to which one would be most beneficial for you. The oils may be used in baths, sprays, and massage oils, or a few drops may be inhaled from a tissue. Try adding one drop of Niaouli to 5 ml of jojoba oil and massaging into the sinus areas on either side of the nose and the forehead.

Herbal Therapeutics for Hayfever:

Herbs may be taken as teas, tinctures, juices or capsules – and even in the bath or as a steam:

Teas:

Ephedra; Elder Flowers; Eyebright; Euphorbia; Yarrow; Vervain; Comfrey leaf; Nettle; Goldenrod; Chamomile German; Plantain; Lemon Balm; and Dandelion.

Start drinking these herbs as tea infusions as early as possible. Drink the tea 2 or 3 times a day, every day. Some of these herbs should not be taken by people who suffer from high blood pressure or glaucoma.

Soothing Eye Wash:

Eyebright tea may be used in an eye bath.

Fresh Herbal Juices:

Fresh herbal juices are extremely beneficial for hayfever. Nettle (stronger anti-histamine action than the tea or tincture); Plantain (particularly good for excess mucus and wheezing). Freshly pressed carrot juice is very beneficial as are other freshly pressed or blended vegetables and low-glycemic fruits.

Tinctures or Capsules:

Euphrasia (irritated eyes); Goldenseal or Oregon Grape Root (excess mucus); Plantago (excess mucus and wheezing); Propolis (irritated throat); Echinacea (immune system); Nettle (itchiness and to support detoxification).

Important Note: If you:

  • Are pregnant, breast feeding or plan to become pregnant;
  • Have a long standing illness;
  • Have undiagnosed health problems;
  • Are on medication;

It is always best to seek advice from an experienced herbalist.

If taken as directed, herbs are very safe. But they are powerful medicines. Do not use them lightly; do not exceed the recommended dose.

When self-prescribing, be aware that you are responsible for your own actions, watch carefully how you react to the remedies.

If you notice any adverse reaction, stop taking the herb immediately and seek the advice of an experienced herbalist.