When the ground begins to thaw and buds spring to life on the trees, seasonal allergies also blossom for many people. Allergies refer to an abnormal immune response that can produce a wide range of symptoms ranging from a stuffy, runny nose, sneezing, and red eyes to coughing and hay fever. Over the counter treatments such as anti-histamines, intranasal steroids, etc. can help provide temporary relief, but won’t address the underlying cause. As a proponent of holistic health therapies, food and lifestyle modifications should always be considered first.
Reach for the refrigerator.
A first line of defense should always be food. Spring is the perfect time to increase your fresh and seasonal produce loaded with vitamins and minerals that can help combat some of those irritating symptoms.
How are the top 5 foods to fill your fridge with during allergy season:
01. Greens, such as broccoli, spinach, kale, Swiss chard and leafy herbs offer a boost of folic acid, which is a natural anti-histamine. Juice these beauties, lightly sauté, or incorporate into soups and stirfrys.
02. Citrus fruit and berries can help reduce mucus build up in the nose and sinuses, and help clear nasal passages.
03. Garlic, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, apples, etc. contain quercetin which works to inhibit the release of histamine and decrease inflammation. You can also supplement with quercetin to help improve absorption. Take with extra vitamin C, and vitamin C rich foods for an extra powerful punch.
04. Anti-inflammatory foods such as salmon, nuts and seeds, turmeric, ginger, etc. are beneficial to reduce the inflammatory action that is on overdrive due to excess histamine.
05. Foundational nutrients such as high quality whole-foods multivitamin, omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil, and vitamin D3 are basic essential nutrients that help support the body as a whole.