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Planning Retirement Online

Supplements Guide in later life

No. 2 Alternatives for allergies
                           - July 2003


Continuing our series on supplements  

By Helen Franks


Hay fever is a seasonal allergy which usually strikes with the onset of pollen release. Yet people are starting to suffer earlier in the year. And pollen, it has been discovered, is not the only trigger. Cases of hay fever have risen more rapidly in cities compared to rural areas, which points a finger at pollution as being an important culprit. Exhaust fumes prime the immune system to react, and a running nose, sore throat and itchy eyes can be the result, the symptoms usually associated with hay fever, though the trigger may have nothing to do with hay or pollen. 

How to treat hay fever and other allergies?  Orthodox medication often brings instant relief to symptoms. Identifying the root cause that compromises the immune system is even better.  Allergy clinics attached to hospitals may carry out sensitising tests that can help sufferers identity and avoid some allergens.

What  alternatives are available?

Oralmat (Rye Extract)

An extract of the rye plant, available as Oralmat in the UK,  has been shown in trials to be helpful in reducing allergies of all kinds, including hay fever and asthma. It supports healthy respiratory function by strengthening defences against allergens. Dr Princetta, a specialist in the treatment of allergies in Atlanta, Georgia, reports: 'The South-eastern United States, and Atlanta, Georgia in particular, is a well-known allergy area of the world. Even some of my worst allergy patients responded very well to the drops and suffered a minimum of 50 percent less this past spring.’ Take 3 drops under the tongue (hold 30 seconds or longer) 3 times daily. Children over 12 years can use one drop. 

Oralmat costs 27.61 for 10ml - code ARG73240



A team of Swiss scientists looked at the effectiveness of a herbal extract called butterbur for helping treat hay fever. A group of volunteers were split into two groups and given either the herb or an antihistamine drug called cetirizine. After two weeks they found that volunteers in both groups reported significant benefits from their treatments. Although the conventional drug is regarded as a non-drowsy medication, it still produced symptoms of drowsiness, whereas the herb produced no side-effects.
Antihistamine medications are currently frequently prescribed for hay fever, but the drowsiness causes drawbacks for many people. As a result of the findings, the study authors say, 'We believe butterbur should be considered for treating hayfever, particularly in cases where the sedative effects of antihistamine need to be avoided.'
Butterbur has been medicinally used for centuries and grows naturally in Europe, North America and parts of Asia. It has natural anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic properties and is often used to treat migraines. The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

Butterbur costs 19.95 for 50 capsules - code LIN00309 (not vegetarian).


You can now buy supplements from Nutri Centre (the major suppliers of supplements in the UK) via laterlife with a special 10% discount for UK laterlife visitors. Simply click on the product title below for a specific product or click to browse the full range of Nutri Centre products.

Make sure you quote the coupon code LL010 (that's LL zero one zero) in order to receive your 10% discount.   

Essential Oils

Place a few drops of essential oil of basil and melissa on a handkerchief to help clear the sinuses. Or blend with a little almond or jojoba oil and massage into the chest.


The flower and leaves of Calendula officinalis also known as English or Pot Marigold, and found in gardens world wide, are used in these products. Calendula has been used for centuries for its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities. In Russia  it has the nickname  Russian Penicillin. Products containing Calendula include:

Nelsons Calendula Cream, a soothing multi-purpose skin cream, specially prepared from the Calendula (Marigold) plant. Price  5.50 for 50g.  NEL100242. 

Weleda Calendula Lotion,
price 4.95 for 50ml.  WEL603200


General Advice

  • Try to mimimise  intake of alcohol from your diet during any allergic phase

  • Diet should regularly contain antioxidant rich vegetables and fruit (organic if possible), and seeds to provide selenium and zinc. 

  • If you can, avoid exposure to traffic fumes and pollen.

  • For sensitive skins and conditions like eczema and psoriasis, take care in choice of cleansers and skin creams.   Choose dermatologically proven, preservative free range such as those produced by Allergenics.  Their Face & Body Shower Gel has a gentle cleansing action and is free from soap and harsh detergents. Available in 200ml bottle - 6.89 - Code ESIE1062.  Their Gentle Medicated Shampoo is suitable for sensitive scalps. Available in 200ml bottle - 6.89 – Code ESIE1536



We recommend if you are taking any prescription drugs that you check compatability with your doctor or practice nurse for any drug interaction.

Check quantities of any supplements to ensure the amounts you are taking are safe for you.

Ensure you follow directions supplied with products.


Nutricentre4.jpg (4081 bytes)

To purchase any item from Nutri Centre simply click on the product title above or on the links opposite.

Make sure you quote the coupon code LL010 (that's LL zero one zero) in order to receive your 10% discount).


Oralmat (Rye Extract)


Nelsons Calendula Cream

Weleda Calendula Lotion

Allergenics Face and Body Shower Gel

Allergenics Medicated Shampoo

Browse the full range (make a note of the coupon code opposite to obtain your discount)




Other articles in this series

Edition 1 - Multivitamins

Edition 2 - Alternatives for allergies



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