As spring is slowly creeping up, so is allergy season. I know I’ll be experiencing the “joys” of hay fever soon enough. Readers Digest interviewed an allergist, a nutritionist, a mind and body expert, and an integrative medicine specialist in hopes of finding the best way to handle allergies this spring and summer. The following is what they came up with:

The Allergist. The news is good. In the past, antihistamines made people drowsy, but newer ones (loratadine, fexofenadine and cetirizine) are much less likely to. Inhaled nasal steroids and antihistamines can help. So can OTC decongestant nasal sprays, but don’t use them for more than a few days, or you could make the problem worse.

The Nutritionist. Variety, balance and moderation are the hallmarks of a healthy diet, so eat nutritious, colorful foods (blueberries, tomatoes, broccoli). Some allergy drugs are dehydrating, so be sure to get enough fluids.

The Mind/Body Expert. Laughter may be the best medicine (as if we didn’t know!). Joyful, not dark, humor optimizes the immune system. And laughing relieves stress, which can worsen allergies, so it may also ease your symptoms.

The Integrative Medicine Specialist. Eat more fruits, vegetables and omega-3s (salmon, mackerel, flaxseed, walnuts) to help modulate your immune system.

How to Handle Allergies – [Readers Digest]

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