There are several alternative treatments that people often use for seasonal allergic rhinitis, though their effectiveness has not been proven. Some people find that acupuncture helps relieve symptoms of allergic rhinitis. Other alternative therapies like hypnosis and yoga may help, as well. Herbal supplements, especially butterbur, are also commonly used to help treat seasonal allergic rhinitis.Check with your Doctor before taking any herbal supplement.
A Answers (2)
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI) answered
Peter Bongiorno, ND, Naturopathic Medicine, answered
One of the best herbal remedies to treat seasonal allergies is Butterbur. Studies show it to be as effective as the drugs, with fewer side effects.
Although not well-publicized, Butterbur (its Latin name is Petasites hybridus) has been shown to be equally as effective as the leading allergy medications fexofenadine (Allegra) and cetirizine (Zyrtec). A study compared Allegra directly to Butterbur in 380 patients in a double-blinded, randomized study – a type study conventional research considers the most stringent and trustworthy. In this study, both the drug and the herb were equally as effective. A second controlled and blinded study of 131 patients comparing the herb with Zyrtec also found equally effective benefits. The drug group was shown to suffer from drowsiness and fatigue, despite the fact that this medication was touted as being ‘non-drowsy.’
Butterbur is thought to work by lowering levels of the inflammatory molecule leukotriene in our bodies.
From a naturopathic standpoint, it is equally as important to modify your diet to avoid inflammatory foods (like cow's milk products and any foods a person is specifically allergic or sensitive to) as well as get plenty of bed rest, use nasal rinses, and high quality air filtration in the home and office. I also recommend a little local honey comb, which many of my patients have told me is also quite helpful.
For more information about butterbur for allergies and references, please see:http://www.innersourcehealth.com/news_blog.aspx?EntryID=417