Category Archives: hay fever

A Natural Remedy for Hay Fever? Your Diet May Hold The Key

While many of us look forward to the warmer spring weather hay fever sufferers are dreading it. Distressing symptoms such as explosive sneezing, intensely itchy and watery eyes and nose, congestion, headaches and fatigue are caused by excessive allergic reactions to tree or grass pollen, molds, spores and fumes. Although many people rely on antihistamines and other over the counter remedies to ease the symptoms many people prefer natural health remedies. There is evidence that your diet may hold they key in considerably easing the symptoms.

Some nutritional doctors have pointed out that there was an association between the increase in sugar consumption in the more affluent classes from the middle of the 19th Century and an increase in hay fever. Although it may just be coincidence sugar and grass pollen, the commonest trigger of hay fever, are both in the same botanical family. Interestingly, wheat a common food allergy is also in the same family.

The Food Allergy Connection

There is no doubt that people with hay fever who are allergic or intolerant to some foods will benefit from excluding them from their diets. This has often worked for people who don’t respond to other treatments. By reducing the some of the load on your immune system your tolerance to pollen and other hay fever triggers may be increased.

While this may not produce results in the short term the long term effects of excluding reactive foods together with following a healthy diet free of refined carbohydrates and food additives and the correction of any nutritional deficiencies often brings about considerable reduction in symptoms the following year.

Natural Yogurt & the Immune System

Although many naturopaths recommend excluding cow’s milk products to lessen mucus and congestion eating live yogurt for 3 months prior to the pollen season has lessened hayfever for some. A lot of research has shown that the good bacteria in your bowel play an important part in how your immune system functions. Hay fever occurs when the immune system reacts excessively to certain substances releasing histamine which causes the majority of the symptoms.

Vitamin C and Bioflavanoids – Nature’s Antihistamines
Some recent studies have shown that Vitamin C can act as a natural antihistamine remedy. Adults who took 2 grams of Vitamin C a day reduced their blood histamine levels by 40% . Citrus fruits, peppers, new potatoes, green leafy vegetables, and tomatoes are high in vitamin C so it makes sense to eat more of these foods.

In fact Greek children who ate a lot of oranges, grapes, apples and tomatoes were less likely to get hay fever. The high levels of bioflavanoids in these foods help prevent the release of histamine from cells.

Quercetin, a natural plant chemical is another natural anti-histamine as well as an antioxidant and inti-inflammatory. Eat more citrus fruit (only if not allergic to them), apples, grapes, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries and onions to get more quercetin.

Carotenoids and Vitamin A

Carotenoids, the substances in plants that give them the wonderful red, orange and yellow colors, can be converted in your body to Vitamin A an essential nutrient for the health of the respiratory system. They are also found in spinach, kale, and collard greens. A group of people with the highest intake of carotenoids had the lowest rates of hay fever. Eat plenty of carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, tomatoes, apricots, mangoes and green leafy veg.

Omega-3 a Natural Remedy for Inflammation
Omega-3 fatty acids can benefit hay fever sufferers as they have an anti-inflammatory effect. Good sources of these essential fats are oily fish (make sure its low in mercury), walnuts and flax seeds.

Making an early start on including all these healthy foods in your diet could provide you with a natural health remedy for hay fever this season.

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Beat Hay Fever Naturally

Hay fever affects at least 20% of the population every year. Many people’s lives are made a misery with constant sneezing, runny noses, watery, red, gritty and itchy eyes when they are exposed to pollen in spring and summer.

The symptoms of hay fever are caused by the release of histamine triggered by over reaction of the immune system to substances that should normally be tolerated. Substances like house dust, house dust mite and animal fur can also trigger symptoms.

But now researchers have found that diesel fumes are causing “Urban Hay Fever” in up to 60% of city dwellers because pollen attaches itself to exhaust fumes and becomes even more irritating. Dr Adrian Morris says that exhaust particles are particularly adept at carrying the pollen deep into the airways.

Sales of antihistamines and decongestants soar at this time of the year as people try to subdue the symptoms that make their lives a misery. Researchers in Switzerland have shown that the herbal remedy Butterbur has similar affects as antihistamine medication and does not have any side effects.

But it is possible to beat your hay fever naturally with regular detox, an anti-allergy diet and some anti-allergy supplements. A healthy body should be able to cope with pollen, dust and other potential allergens. But the immune system can malfunction if your body is overloaded with toxins.

Many people find that as they reduce their toxic load they react less and less to pollen or other trigger substances. Regular detox will help to get rid of chemicals and metals that can interfere with the normal function of your immune system. Of course it helps to start to detox early in the year but it is not too late to start one now or at least try an anti-allergy diet.

1. Avoid gluten grains like wheat, rye, barley, oats. People with hay fever often react to other members of the grass family.

2. Avoid dairy products and red meat as these can contribute to the inflammation caused by the allergic reaction

3. Eat plenty of different coloured fresh fruit and vegetables, especially raw, to get increased nutrients.

4. Increase Omega 3 oils from oily fish, pumpkin seeds, walnuts and linseeds (flax seed) to help to fight inflammation.

5. Avoid alcohol which overloads the liver, slows down detox and interferes with digestion making allergy more likely.

6. Drink plenty of pure water. The body works better when well hydrated.

7. Increase red onions, citrus fruit, berries and apples which contain quercetin, a flavanoid that acts as a natural antihistamine.

8. Get tested for hidden food allergies and exclude foods that you react to.

Nutrients that can help you beat hay fever naturally are:

Quercetin is a powerful antioxidant and natural anti-histamine. Take 500 mg a day as well as eating more red onions, apples, citrus fruit, and berries.

Vitamin C promotes a strong immune system, is anti-inflammatory and can immediately calm down allergic reactions. 2 – 4 grams a day would be a good dose taken throughout the day as it goes out of the body within 6 hours. Increase your vitamin C intake through food by eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, although you would have to eat an enormous amount to get up to 2g.

Omega 3 fish oils are potent anti-inflammatory nutrients, with many other health benefits. Although you can obtain these from eating oily fish (avoiding those fish such as tuna, swordfish and sea bass which are often high in mercury) you can supplement 1,000mg of combined EPA and DHA a day.

Glutamine helps to support good immune function and can reduce allergic reactions as it repairs the linings of the digestive and respiratory systems. Take 500mg a daily.

MSM has significantly reduced hay fever symptoms in many people in studies and is another extremely powerful natural anti-inflammatory substance. Take 500 – 1000mg a day.

Bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapples, has considerable anti-inflammatory and anti-swelling properties. Take up to 300mg daily if you are having an allergic reaction or 100mg daily to reduce your allergic potential.

Improving your general health with regular detox, enough relaxation, restful sleep, exercise, a healthy diet and ensuring your body has all the right nutrients can, in time, cure your hay fever.

To find more about detox visit www.TheDetoxSpecialist.com

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