Allergic reactions occurring in a particular season are commonly known as hay fever. Around 8 percent of Americans suffer from it. Commonly experienced in the summer months, these seasonal allergies can be triggered all-year-round and their symptoms include runny nose, sneezing, and watery eyes. If a person suffers from asthma as well as hay fever, he can suffer from a full-blown-out asthma attack during the season.
Hay fever occurs when the immune system overreacts to an allergen such as airborne pollen. Since each plant emits pollen at different times of the year, depending on your body’s reaction to them, you can experience allergies in more than one season. The body’s immune system reacts to these airborne substances and releases histamine in the bloodstream which causes allergic reactions.
There are many over-the-counter medications available to control and manage these allergic reactions. However, they include side effects such as drowsiness, dizziness, and dry mouth. While extreme cases of allergies necessitate the use of these medications, mild cases can be effectively controlled using natural, at-home remedies including herbal teas and essential oils.
Read on to find out several ways to get a break from the allergies this season.
Load up on vitamin C
Oxidative stress plays a key role in allergic diseases. It is caused by free radicals and is the damage caused to the cells of the body. A powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, vitamin C can play a significant role in the management of allergic reactions. It decreases the body’s production of histamine, by slowing down its reactions to environmental triggers. It is also great for boosting the body’s overall immune system which enables it to fight off infections and diseases more effectively. Foods such as pineapple, most citrus fruits, and strawberries are loaded with vitamin C. Pineapple also contains the anti-inflammatory enzyme bromelain which further helps with allergies. Having these fruits in the form of fresh juices, smoothies, or as it is, especially in the allergic season, will prove to be quite helpful.
Include omega 3 in your diet
These fatty acids are anti-inflammatory in nature and help to combat inflammatory conditions such as allergies and asthma very effectively. They work by helping to decrease the narrowing of airways that occurs in asthma and some seasonal allergies. The fatty acids also incorporate into the cell membranes which help to stabilize them. In case of an allergen entering the body, they quickly help to prevent or reduce any inflammation from occurring. Many foods contain omega 3 fatty acids, including salmon fish, walnuts, chia seeds, and flax seeds. The seeds can be added to smoothies or sprinkled on to your favorite dish.
Foods containing quercetin
A naturally occurring anti-histamine, quercetin is great for managing allergic reactions. It is naturally found in onions, apples, garlic, red grapes, and blueberries. This poly-phenol helps with allergic symptoms like itchy eyes and runny nose. It also helps to reduce the inflammation caused by allergies. Having these food options two to three times a week will prove to be effective.
Take your greens
Most green vegetables are loaded with nutrients and anti-inflammatory components that help with seasonal allergies. Broccoli, kale, spinach, Brussel sprouts are all go-to options when it comes to taking control of your symptoms. Kale and spinach are loaded with vitamin C and E. Broccoli is one of the healthiest veggies and can help you fight off environmental pollutants. Collard greens contain a component known as carotenoid which helps in the prevention of developing an allergy in the first place. Brussel sprouts contain omega 3 which has been proven to be quite helpful in the management of allergic symptoms. So next time, don’t turn up your nose if there are greens on the menu because they might just be what you need.
Have a cuppa
Herbal teas are a great way to combat your seasonal allergies. They are loaded with flavonoids, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory components. Peppermint tea will help with decongestion, and breathing in the essential oil will help clear up nasal and air passages. Nettle tea is an antihistamine and is particularly effective in treating seasonal allergies and helps to relieve the symptoms of itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, and runny nose. Rooibos tea contains bioflavonoids, rutin, and quercetin that block the release of histamines. Lemon balm tea is a natural relaxant and helps to soothe headaches and respiratory symptoms associated with allergies.
A seasonal allergy may be triggered by one or more allergens. However, treatment and management are easy and effective if one is aware of what helps with the symptoms. While over-the-counter medication gives results almost instantaneously, long-term prevention can be obtained by incorporating food items that help combat the allergic reactions or prevent it in the first place. An overall boost in the body’s immune system can be obtained from these foods which will further enable the body to fight off allergies better.