Is It Paleo to Use a Neti Pot?

I doubt it.  

Let me clarify; what I mean is that I doubt Paleolithic man used any form of nasal irrigation, but does that mean someone who’s Paleo today should (or should not) use this ancient Ayurvedic technique?

Nasal irrigation is “the personal hygiene practice in which the nasal cavity is washed to flush out excess mucus and debris from the nose and sinuses. According to its advocates, nasal irrigation promotes good sinus and nasal health.”

I was first introduced to it in my pre Paleo days, when I was still consuming dairy, and as a result, experienced varying degrees of nasal and sinus congestion.  During a bout with a particularly horrible cold, I learned that flushing the nasal cavity via a benign saline wash could potentially expedite the passage of much of the excess mucus we all experience when fighting off a cold bug.

The first time I tried it, it was a wash.  Pardon the pun.  I spluttered water all over the place and found no relief.  Fortunately, my stubborn nature warranted another try and the second go was a success.   

I felt as though I’d  never breathed that clearly in my entire life.

Being that I felt such a heightened sense of the ability to inspire and expire so efficiently, I decided to incorporate it into part of my daily regime, right there along with brushing my teeth.

Too much?

Alas, for me it was.

Unbeknownst to me, I began to accumulate small amounts of fluid in my Eustachian tubes which resulted in not only an ear infection, but a six month long sensation of a clogged ear that, despite visits to several ear docs, including a facility right here in LA which is touted to be the best, would simply not go away.

I took my antibiotics straight away (in any case where there’s a documented infection, I feel it’s suitable to do so, for myself), then took my 50 billion units of probiotic tablets for months afterward to replenish what that Cipro had killed, and ultimately it subsided.

I tried the Neti Pot a couple of times after that, but it created a clogged ear feeling again that I can absolutely do without.

For me, it’s no longer something I chose to do.

However, I would certainly not broadly tell all to avoid it; rather, give it a try (and cut out the dairy and gluten- both of which can cause significant congestion) see for yourself if it fits with your own hygiene-routine.