Sinus congestion is awful! It can make you feel like you can't focus, your head weighs a ton and it is hard to breathe. Sinus congestion happens for a variety of reasons. It may be from an infection, a seasonal allergy, a food allergy or food intolerance or even an unhealthy gut!
I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist so it is important to me to use natural methods for healing whenever possible. That means getting to the root cause of a health condition or concern. Once the root cause is identified, I create an actionable routine that can easily be followed.
If the sinuses are severely infected, you may or may not be able to get rid of the infection with home remedies. How to know if you have a sinus infection? An infection will show up in a variety of symptoms. The most common are:
Sinus pressure in the face, behind the eyes, ears or forehead
Phlegm with or without green or yellow mucus
Fatigue, headache and mouth-breathing
What does a sinus infection feel like? As you can imagine, it feels pretty awful. Your whole body may ache and you might feel like you have to sleep all the time but can't because of the phlegm and pain.
How to cure sinus infection naturally? Some remedies such as steam inhalation, a neti pot, diffusing essential oils, using an essential oil application or even acupuncture can help. If those are not helping after a couple of days, it may be time to see a doctor to prescribe a medication. While I always try to find a natural method first, there are times when pharmaceuticals are necessary.
Sometimes the root cause of the sinus infection is going to take time to heal. Longer than a person can wait to get the immediate infection out of the body. This is when it is time to take the pharmaceutical to rid the infection so the root cause healing can begin.
One root cause of sinus problems is seasonal allergies and histamine intolerance. Seasonal allergies are just that - something we are allergic to during a specific season. Common allergies are ragweed, grasses and pollen. Histamine is a natural substance in our body that is released to help stop the allergen from becoming more than a nuisance in our body.
A remedy to help prevent sinus infections is to stop seasonal allergies and histamine intolerance. Does this mean taking shots or pharmaceuticals? No! It means finding out what is triggering the allergy or histamine intolerance. Here are a few common ways to treat the root cause.
An easy way to give your sinuses extra support during peak times for seasonal allergies is to take antioxidant supplements. When our sinuses are responding to an irritant, antioxidants are important to give the body the extra boost it needs to fight the irritant. Similar to how most people start thinking about supporting the immune system during cough cold season.
One of my favorite antioxidants that helps with seasonal allergies is Quercetin. Quercetin is found in apples, blueberries and onions. The saying is true: An apple a day keeps the doctor away!
Quercetin has been studied in rats and shown to suppress allergic response. To start taking Quercetin, take at a minimum 200 mg per day. If you don't feel relief in about 5 days, slowly move up to 1,000 mg per day. Definitely take Quercetin with a meal to increase absorption.
Believe it or not Vitamin C is a potent vitamin to help reduce seasonal allergies. If you aren't taking Vitamin C daily, you should. Vitamin C is prevalent in a variety of foods, most commonly in citrus fruits but also broccoli and bell peppers.
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin which means you cannot take too much. Your body can excrete it easily. Take at least 1,000 mg a day. While you can take a pill, there are also powdered mixes such as Emergen C. Some people may experience side-effects such as gas or diarrhea when taking 1,000 mg of Vitamin C all at once. If that is an issue, simply take a lower dose a couple of times a day.
Probiotics are another supplement that reduces allergic responses. Thought they were only good for digestive health? What if I told you about 70% of your immune system lives in the gut? Probiotics benefits are they help populate good bacteria in the digestive tract which in turn, gives you a healthy immune system to fight back against seasonal allergies. Look for products that have both Lactobacillus and Bifidobactrium strains. These are the strains found in our body so you will get the most benefit by taking a product with them.
TEST FOR FOOD ALLERGIES
Histamine intolerance can lead to sinus infections because the body has become unable to breakdown histamine. It can be caused by an enzyme in the body not functioning properly or it can be caused by bacterial overgrowth because food is not been digested properly. An IgG food allergy test is one of the easiest ways to find out if histamine intolerance is causing your sinus issues.
Foods such as avocados, eggplants, spinach, shellfish, tomatoes, bananas and citrus fruits are just a few examples. If you can't take a food allergy test, eliminating foods from your routine for 30 days can help. When the 30 days are over, slowly reintroduce the foods to see how your body reacts to them.
It can be helpful to work with a Certified Holistic Nutritionist during this time. Histamine intolerance could mean your gut is unhealthy and could lead to other symptoms. Symptoms is how our body tells us something is wrong.
Does any of this sound like you?
👉Diarrhea and/or constipation
👉Bloating and gas
👉Congestion, coughing, wheezing
👉Brain fog, difficulty recalling words, short term memory issues
👉Headaches and migraines
👉Acne and itchy skin
👉Tired all the time
👉Sensitivity to fragrances and chemicals
If you said yes to just one of the above, your body is telling you something is not right. Discovering the root cause and how to have a healthy gut can be confusing and hard! I am here to help.
I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist obsessed with teaching people just like you how to heal their gut so you can stop suffering and get back to living!
I offer a FREE 30 minute strategy session where we will talk about your specific symptoms and how the Simply Great Health program can help.
How would eliminating your symptoms improve your life? You could:
✅Be more present with your children
✅Focus at work
✅Have more energy
✅Stop running to the bathroom
✅Workout without fear of an accident or farting
✅Restore your confidence
✅Be able to cook healthy meals for you and your family
✅Take an active vacation
✅Reclaim your life!
Simply Great Health is a customized 5 Step plan that heals your body and fits your busy lifestyle.
It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE.
If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now.
If it is a fit, we can take the next step and get you started on the path to healing.
DRINK MORE WATER
Hydration is key to help our nasal passages fight allergens and pathogens. No one drinks enough water, not even me. It is one of the simplest yet hardest thing for us to do. The goal is to drink half your body weight in ounces every day. Does coffee or tea count as water? Some of it does. Since coffee is a diuretic, it can count as about 1/2 a cup of water. Tea can count as about 3/4 of a cup of water.
The benefit of drinking herbal tea is there are teas especially designed to relieve nasal congestion. Hyssop Tea has a sweet taste, helps to relieve congestion and has anti-viral properties to reduce the risk of infection and promotes healing. Licorice Root relaxes the lungs and reduces the amount of time we need to cough or sneeze. Spearmint Leaf soothes the throat from irritation caused by post-nasal drip and coughing. It also breaks down mucus.
The Neti Pot is a great way to clean the sinuses and promote sinus drainage. Make sure to use clean, filtered, lukewarm water when cleansing the nasal passages. Don't use tap water because you will be introducing chemicals into the nasal passage. The nose is very sensitive to chemicals so try to avoid knowingly putting chemicals into it.
Neti pots are great when you already have stuffed sinuses. But neti pots are also great to use as a preventative therapy. Cleaning the sinuses gives your body that much more ammunition to avoid irritants and allergens, which will stop sinus infections. Try using a neti pot at least a couple of times a week.
Essential oils are helpful for clearing nasal congestion. Eucalyptus oil in a diffuser is great to help loosen mucus. But when a diffuser isn't practical, there are necklaces and bracelets that can be worn and diffuse the oil throughout the day. For sinuses I would recommend using a necklace with a lava stone. You simply add a drop of oil on your fingers and rub it on the lava stone. Put it back in the necklace to enjoy nasal congestion relief all day.
Healthy and Natural World reports that peppermint oil is great for congestion relief. Inhaling it reduces the amount of phlegm which will help you breath easier. Lemon oil is also known for reducing nasal mucus and treating throat and mouth inflammation. A great side-effect of lemon oil is that it helps to reduce stress. So when you are inhaling lemon oil for allergies your mood will brighten as well. Isn't that fantastic?
Exercise promotes strong blood flow in the body and it heats up the body helping to kill pathogens. Exercise does not have to be very strenuous to work. Committing to moving your body at least 30 minutes a day will help you manage seasonal allergies and nasal congestion.
Yoga is a great way to relieve sinus congestion. Take a class in a studio or at home via YouTube, where you spend time with your head below your chest which clears nasal congestion. This doesn't mean you have to go upside down! Poses like Downward Dog, Rabbit, Puppy Pose, Fish Pose and Alternate Nostril breathing will help your body breakdown the congestion. You can go to LiveStrong to learn more about the poses.
I hope you enjoyed learning about natural ways you can cure sinus congestion. Getting to the root cause of why you get sinus infections is key. Supplements, hydration, sinus cleansing and maintenance and exercise are just a couple of ways that you can naturally avoid sinus infections. Histamine intolerance may be one of the root causes of sinus infections as well as other symptoms you may be experiencing. Working with a Certified Holistic Nutritionist can resolve your symptoms and restore your sinuses.
Do you think you will try any of the above natural sinus solutions? Let me know by leaving a comment below.