Talk about an overreaction!
That is exactly what an allergic response is. According to the AAFA (Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America)…
“An allergy occurs when the body’s immune system sees a substance as harmful and overreacts to it. The substances that cause allergic reactions are allergens. When someone has allergies, their immune system makes an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE). These antibodies respond to allergens. The symptoms that result are an allergic reaction.”
There in lies the problem. Your immune system has taken on this conditioned behaviour, so allergies are generally not curable overnight. Which leaves us with two short-term solutions. Avoid the allergen or try to minimise the symptoms.
A natural alternative is to enlist the help of Essential Oils.
3 Essential Oils for relief from allergies, hay fever and all the fun that goes with it, stuffy nose, watery eyes, rashes and itches et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
Three fantastic Essential Oils to use for allergies are Lavender, Peppermint and Lemon.
I’m someone who wants to know the how come about everything. So I’m going a bit scientific in this post and I’ve added links to where I found my info. How it works doesn’t interest you? You can ignore the links. I have tried to keep it as simple as possible.
A powerful anti-inflammatory and antihistamine, Lavender has been shown to inhibit allergic inflammation and soothes skin irritations.
Remember in the definition above it said..
When someone has allergies, their immune system makes an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE).
Immediate type or immediate hypersensitivity, which may involve the skin, eyes, nose or gut is brought about by IgE. Think runny nose, itchy eyes and rashes.
Lavender has been proven to suppress immediate-type allergic reactions in mice and rats.
So it’s going to work on a cellular level to prevent hypersensitivity, which may involve the skin, eyes, nose or gut… think runny nose, itchy eyes and rashes.
(If you want more info on what ‘immediate type allergic reaction’ means see Type 1).
Supporting respiratory function and an effective antioxidant, Lemon Essential Oil is generally an easy and safe oil to have on hand.
In 2012 a study of 100 people was conducted to test a Lemon based nasal spray and it’s effects on allergic rhinopathy (disease of the nose). A before and after comparison showed a total reduction of eosinophils granulocytes.
It’s one of the immune system components, white blood cells, that are responsible for reducing infection and parasites in humans.
Just worth a mention…. Ravensara was also included in the spray, which incidentally is in doTERRA’s respiratory blend – Breathe/Easy Air.
Peppermint contains L-menthol which was found to curb the production of three inflammation mediators. Mediators cause and regulate inflammatory reactions. (See this cool slide show explanation about inflammation mediators).
If you have allergies, your body thinks you are under attack and triggers inflammation. Peppermint curbs the production of that which causes and regulates inflammatory reactions. How cool is that.
The last sentence of the study really caught my eye and I quote…
“Therefore, clinical trials investigating the potential therapeutic efficacy of L-menthol for treatment of chronic inflammatory disorders such as bronchial asthma, colitis and allergic rhinitis seem worthwhile”
I have a bottle of pure unadulterated Peppermint oil sitting on my counter top. How empowering is that! Seems like a worthwhile investment.
3 Ways to use Essential Oils for Allergies
- Inhalation: Add a few drops of Lavender to a diffuser or in your hand, cup it over your mouth and nose and inhale. Alternatively place a few drops on your pillow at night or a tissue during the day.
- Topically: Apply a drop of Peppermint on the base of the neck twice a day. Any of the oils can be applied to the bottom of the feet. Dilute the oils to minimise sensitivity.
- Internally: For airborne allergies, combine 2 drops of Lavender and Lemon with 2-4 drops of Peppermint in a capsule. Take every 3-4 hours.
For the quickest relief, it’s best to start as soon as allergies rear their head or when you feel an allergic reaction is likely.
Quality care starts with quality products, especially if you are going to take Essential Oils internally. For more information about how to measure quality, please visit this post.
doTERRA has done the hard work of filling capsules with this supplement called TriEase. Available from the US warehouse, it contains the three oils, Lavender, Lemon and Peppermint in an easy to take softgel capsule.
Retailing at $36 USD, wholesale only $27 USD*