It is that time of the year again when sneezing, sniffling and itchy eyes become a daily occurrence for those who suffer from seasonal hay fever.
Antihistamines are a popular pharmaceutical medication taken by those sufferers but they come with extensive side effects - especially feeling drowsy much of the time as well as dry mouth or nausea.
Is there something more natural you can take?
Yes, there is - butterbur is one such natural remedy.
A natural antihistamine, butterbur was used to treat coughs and asthma
as far back as the 17th century.
Researchers have since identified the compounds in butterbur that help reduce symptoms in asthma
by inhibiting leukotrienes and histamines, which are responsible for symptom aggravation in asthma.
Not just good to use during the allergy season, butterbur can be used year-round to relieve inflammation, prevent migraines
, reduce asthma symptoms, and even protect the brain and heart from damage. In the past, it was also used as a traditional treatment to help heal wounds, reduce urinary tract infection symptoms
and fight off fevers.
In a German study, 40% of patients taking butterbur root extract were able to reduce their intake of traditional asthma medications.
A word or two of warning
Butterbur is a member of the ragweed family, so if you are allergic to ragweed, marigold, daisy or chrysanthemum, you should not use butterbur.
Also, the raw
herb should not be used because it contains substances called pyrrolizidine alkaloids
that can be toxic to your liver and kidneys. Commercial butterbur products have had these alkaloids removed.
How to take butterbur?
Available in a softgel capsule form, adding butterbur to your medicine cabinet can make a big impact on your health and may even reduce your need for other medications. Extracts from the leaves, stem and roots of the plant are included in the capsule, making it quick, easy and convenient to add to your daily routine.