Allergy season has been hitting us about two weeks earlier than normal for the past few years. The culprit? Climate change: Drier, warmer air is prompting trees to release their annoying pollen prematurely. Stay sniffle-free with 5 foods and herbs that will build your defenses.
- Red Onions
The outer flesh of this aromatic bulb is high in quercetin (about 40 milligrams per onion), an antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory and antihistamine powers. It may work by reducing DNA damage and a number of histamines our bodies make in response to dust, pollen, and other allergens. Quercetin is also found in apples (7 mg per apple) and in red wine (two mg per glass). While every little bit counts, you will need to take a supplement to get the recommended 500 mg/day.
- Nettle Tea and Extract
Extract from nettle, leafy herb, a thorny, can help protect mast cells by lessening their breach during an allergic backlash, according to a study in Phytotherapy Research. This means fewer chemicals like prostaglandins, cytokines, and histamines get spewed into your body to bring on nasty symptoms. You can take nettle as a capsule (500 mg/day), or drink a tea or tincture the extract in liquid mode.
This classical Chinese herb may help the body adapt to illness and stress with its anti-inflammatory, antiviral properties, and antibacterial. One study found that it helps reduce allergy symptoms. Try dried astragalus root in capsule form (about 1,500 mg/day) with your doctor’s grace, of course.
Extract from the roots and leaves of this shrub were found to be just as effective at fighting allergy manifestation as some over the counter antihistamines, according to researchers in Europe. Take 50 to 100 mg twice per day, recommend by Evangeline Lausier, MD, assistant professor of medicine at Duke University.
This fruit can pack up to 100 milligrams of vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, and antihistamine that can help block the chemicals that cause a runny nose, itchy eyes and swelling. Preliminary research suggests that allergy symptoms may increase when you eat high doses of vitamin C (up to 2,000 mg per day). “Try to drink several glasses of orange juice every day,” says Marianne Frieri, MD, chief of allergy and immunology at New York’s Nassau University Medical Center.
Author: Yogi Chetan Mahesh