Healthy Habit | "Beating the Sniffles"

By Kimmi Norvell

"As much as we enjoy the break from the sweltering heat, lots of people dread the first north wind and possibly every one after that. I don't know about you, but my sinuses exploded the day of that first north wind, Saturday September 15th to be exact. I never had allergies until I moved back to Texas from Washington. I don't know why. Perhaps after five years in a completely different environment, my allergies didn't feel as home as my heart when I got back. Perhaps they're still getting acclimated to the tall pines, squatty cedars and wispy grasses. I think we have it pretty good in Rockport, considering our typical southeasterly wind provides us with bay and ocean breezes.

Either way, we're surrounded by people that wish their head would either explode or just crack open to relieve the pressure. There are many things that we can do to help with this situation so don't go beating your head up against the wall quite yet! I'll start with mild symptoms and move onto full blown sinus infections.

This is cold/flu/allergy season and the most important thing is to keep our immune system up. I recommend an herbal wellness formula full of minerals, herbs, vitamins and antioxidants that noticeably enhances my health. An even more natural way to keep the immune system in tip-top shape is by eating whole foods and making sure each meal contains plenty of dark, leafy green veggies. Get plenty of exercise and make sure you're getting quality sleep each night. I use a neti pot nightly, to wash out what a days worth of breathing has brought in. Neti pots are not beneficial if you're too stopped up, they only work as a preventive. A good instructional video can be found here. Know that you don't have to use the fancy neti salt, any non-iodized, kosher or sea salt will do the trick. (I grind mine up so it dissolves faster.) Typically, I don't have any problems on my maintenance plan and plenty of sleep.

What about if you have allergies every year? A daily teaspoon of local honey is a great way to build your system up. Don't expect lightening fast results. This is something that will happen over time so you must be consistent. A friend and customer told me about her regimen: Exbertiox (supercharged Echinacea), Propolis (a bee product), Panothenic Acid (Vitamin B-5) and Quercetin with Bromelain (bioflavonoid, a version of vitamin C). What these products do is boost your immune system by helping with histamine levels, inflammation and too much mucous. Some people will work best with all of them, some only need one or two. I also think fenugreek and thyme are outstanding herbs to help with mucous and inflammation.

Essential oils work really well for seasonal issues. I will put Cajeput on my feet, chest and cheeks at night if I can't breathe very well. For my face, I put a couple of drops in with my moisturizer so it's diluted and keep it away from the eyes. I also use an essential oil blend, Tei-Fu, that works wonders for my head and muscle aches. Once again, not for the eyes.

If you'd like more information, stop in Coastal Bend Health Foods! Don't hesitate, this is a great time to be outside and active!
Kimmi Norvell is the owner of Coastal Bend Health Foods in Rockport, Texas.

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