Sinus and congestion are inflammation of one or more of the paranasal sinuses which causes congestion/ mucus to block the passages and cause pain, pressure, inflammation or headaches.
Some causes of this complaint are: allergies (airborne and internal), leaky gut in the digestive tract, liver congestion, hayfever, digestive candida, dairy intolerance, pollution and smoking, bacterial infections, recent coughs or respiratory tract infections.
Foods to decrease during this time are:
• dairy foods due to increasing mucus and congestion (a small amount of yoghurt is recommended).
• mucus free diet – avoid sugar, refined foods and fried foods.
• avoid any allergic foods – common allergens are citrus, nuts, dairy, eggs, wheat, gluten and peanuts.
Foods to increase are:
• Herbal teas such as fenugreek, rosehip, licorice, lemon and ginger may help to reduce sinus congestion.
• Start each day with a small glass of warm water with half a lemon squeezed into it – this promotes cleansing of the digestive system, bowels and sinuses.
• Drink plenty of water – at least 2 litres per day.
• Consume more garlic, ginger, onions, turmeric and chilli in your diet as these have a decongestive effect.
• Take a probiotic supplement such as Synbac to recorrect any bowel flora troubles.
• Increase alkalising foods such as miso soup, vegetable juices, barley grass, lemon juice, brown rice, sprouts, fruits and vegetables.
• Add manuka honey to a warm glass of fresh lemon and ginger tea.
• Do steam inhalations with Eucalyptus oil.
• Gently massage the area along the eyebrows, alongside the nose and cheek bones if you are experiencing sinus congestion. You may find tender spots here, if you do just hold the pressure for 10 seconds and this helps to break up the congestion and disperse it.
• Consume more pineapple in your diet as this has an enzyme called Bromelain which helps to break down congestion.
• Cod liver oil contains vitamin A and D which are specific anti-inflammatory for the mucus membranes and immune system.
• Take a vitamin C supplement which contains bioflavinoids, take at least 6g per day.
• Buy a neti pot and fill it with water or sea water to help clear the sinuses.
Addressing digestive complaints such as dairy intolerance and constipation will also be of benefit to improve your situation in the long run. The following is a general diet plan which will help to alkalise the body, improve the digestive processes and reduce congestion:
- dairy free smoothie
- lemon juice
- vegetable juice
- fruit salad with nuts and yogurt
- sourdough bread with avocado
- tahini and tomatoes
- millet porridge with berries
- scrambled eggs
- miso soup or any soup
- vegetable juice
- avocado and salad wrap
- crackers with humus, tomato, avocado etc
- vegetable soups
- steamed chicken and vegetables
- miso soups
- chicken soup with vegetables
- rice noodles with vegetables and meat
The information presented on this page has been prepared by a fully qualified naturopath and is for educational purposes only. It does not take into consideration your specific circumstances and is not intended to replace the services of a health practitioner. Any application of the material in this text is at the reader’s discretion and sole responsibility. If you have a persistent health condition or your symptoms are severe please consult a qualified healthcare provider.