Allergic rhinitis is an inflammation of the nasal passages. It happens when your immune system overacts to environmental allergens. These allergens include seasonal pollen, moulds and dust mites. It manifests as sneezing, a congested nose, a sore or scratchy throat, swelling in the affected area and watery eyes. Sometimes you may end up with severe nasal congestion, which can make it difficult to breathe.
This illness affects 30% of the world’s population, particularly teenagers and young adults, and the number of those affected is on the rise. Studies have shown that most asthma patients also suffer from allergic rhinitis, and the two illnesses are often linked together.
Black seed – a natural remedy
Currently there is no cure for allergic rhinitis, and medical professionals will often prescribe medication such as antihistamines, steroids and decongestants to treat the symptoms. However, some of these medications may have side effects, and decongestants only offer temporary relief.
Try a natural remedy instead. Black seed, or Nigella sativa, has a long history treating various ailments, particularly those related to the respiratory system. Known as Habbatus sauda in Islamic history, black seed is touted as a panacea “for all diseases except death”. This spice is also found in the tomb of Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamun, emphasizing its high importance in Egyptian culture.
How black seed can help
Black seed contains many components, but the active ingredient in black seed is thymoquinone (TQ). It is TQ which drives a majority of the positive effects against allergic rhinitis, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties.
TQ has been shown to inhibit the pathways of cyclooxygenase (COX) and lipoxygenase (LO), two main enzymes that mediate the inflammatory response. For allergic rhinitis patients, this means a drop in the severity of the inflammation, allowing for less swelling and decreased allergy symptoms.
TQ is also able to inhibit histamine release from mast cells. This reduces the amount of mucus generated in the nasal cavity, ensuring an unimpeded airway and ease of breathing.
Research carried out on rhinitis patients demonstrates TQ’s ability to reduce nasal mucosal congestion, nasal itching and other related symptoms within 2 weeks. Hence it is a natural alternative to using anti-allergic drugs, which may have undesirable side effects when consumed for long periods.
Taking black seed supplements can help bolster your respiratory system and keep it in peak condition against allergies. Look out for a supplement that contains high strength black seed (500mg) to ensure that you are getting a sufficient dosage for your needs.