Whether your allergy medicine just isn’t cutting it anymore or you just want to research healthier alternatives, natural medicine can be a healthy and effective way to reduce your allergy symptoms.

You’ve probably heard by now about how good omega 3 fatty acids, also known as “good fats”, are for your body. They have been shown to prevent many diseases and are considered good for your overall health. Plus, people who consume a lot of these fatty acids tend to suffer from fewer allergies. You can put more omega 3s into your diet by eating more fish, flax seed, and certain nuts. If you just can’t stomach these foods and choose to take a supplement, be sure to research safe products first so you know what you’re taking won’t cause adverse effects.

Quercitin is another compound found naturally in food that can help ease your summer allergies. It acts by preventing the production of histamines. You can get quercitin in your diet by eating fruits like citrus, tomatoes, and apples, certain green vegetables like lettuce, broccoli, and parsley, and even from tea and wine. However, you’ll probably find more relief by taking a supplement. As a bonus, quercitin is an antioxidant, which means it can reduce your risk of certain types of cancer.

Of all the things you’d think to use to treat allergies, weeds are probably one of the least logical choices. Surprisingly, stinging nettles and butterbur are both common weeds that have been found to reduce the production of histamine in the body and to provide allergy relief. They can be found as supplements, or you can buy freeze-dried plants and brew them into your own tea.

Many people rely on allergy shots to treat allergy symptoms. For these shots, a small amount of allergen is injected under the skin. They are administered every week for several years. Eventually, the patient builds up a tolerance and no longer needs medication to control allergies. The problem is that injecting these allergens into the body can cause an adverse reaction in itself. There is a new, more gentle method of the same type of procedure. It is call sublingual immunotherapy and requires allergens to be put under the tongue. This is a less invasive process that provides the same effect as shots.

If you’re worried about putting chemicals into your body, natural or otherwise, then nettie pots are a great alternative. These devices operate similar to a nasal spray, but instead of antihistamines, they contain only salt and water. They act by flushing allergens out of your sinuses (which is where most summer allergens get into your body), preventing a reaction before it starts. They’re safe, natural, and have been used for hundreds of years. If you really want, you can skip the pots altogether and just flush your nose with salt water, but nettie pots make the process faster and easier.

The real beauty of natural products is that you can use many of them with your allergy medications for an extra boost. Just check with your doctor first to make sure there are no interactions or adverse side effects. You should also remember that unlike medications, natural medicines can take a while to work, so you may need to start using them before allergy season to get the full benefit.