Be Fit For Life

with Ellen Cohen-Kaplan

Happy Spring! Tips for seasonal allergies.

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Jeff, Peter, Ellen and Jordie at NPR's Wait, Wait, Don't Tell me in Chicago

Jeff, Peter, Ellen and Jordie at NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell me in Chicago

HI all,
I love spring! Who doesn’t? Plenty of people with allergies don’t, so I’ve included some information from the health section of the Boston Globe on April 22nd and an excellent website to help those of you who suffer from them. Read on!

Of course, there are a lot of good reasons to love this season. Outdoor activities, one layer instead of several layers of clothing, putting off housework and playing in the garden you’ve been thinking of planting or already have, and the lack of slippery outdoor surfaces, to name a few. I’m very glad to be home from France, then college trips to D.C., Baltimore, St. Louis and Chicago. We had fun going to see “Wait, Wait, don’t tell me” a current events game show of National Public Radio fame. Here’s a picture below of Jeff, Peter Sagal, Jordie and me at the taping. Also, If any of you have questions about colleges in those cities, I’d be happy to talk to you! It’s been a whirlwind month, and as much as I really love to travel, it’s great to be back into my exercise and work routine. We walked and cycled many miles, but I missed weight training and zumba and seeing so many of you!

Have you started sneezing yet? Pollen counts have been rising in Massachusetts, leaving many wheezing, sneezing, and dealing with itchy eyes.Here are some tips to manage the allergy season:
-Keep windows closed and go for the air conditioning to keep pollen outside where it belongs.
-Try to leave outdoor shoes at the entryway or mudroom, to avoid tracking pollen around the house.
-For many people, dairy foods increase mucus, so limiting their intake decreases its production.
-Avoid inflammatory foods. I found a very useful website you can visit this for a list of these foods-

Here are the Boston Globe’s tips from April 22nd:
1. Using allergy drops under the tongue. These could replace allergy shots to desensitize people to grass or tree allergies. Widely used in Europe, the drops aren’t available here since they’re not approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.

2. Allergy-fighting foods. Research suggests that foods rich in antioxidants or anti-inflammatory nutrients can lower your chances of getting allergies. These include green tea and red foods such as apples, red onions, grapes, and raspberries.

3. Exercise. Physical activity could relieve some allergy symptoms by helping maintain the immune system. But don’t exercise outdoors, especially when pollen counts are high.

4. Acupuncture. The technique may help alleviate symptoms of seasonal allergies at least somewhat, according to a February study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Twelve treatments over eight weeks provided modest relief.

5. Dripless nasal sprays. Prescription steroid nasal sprays have gotten easier to use with versions that deliver a less drippy mist instead of a liquid, according to Dr. Karen Blatman, an allergist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Several are now available as generics, including triamcinolone (Nasacort) and fluticasone propionate (Flonase).

Of course, check with your allergy doctor to find out which ones may be best for you.

Yours in health,

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