Allergy Fighting Foods
Allergy season can leave you reaching for over-the-counter remedies, but if you want to prevent the symptoms of common allergies before they start, following the right diet may help.
Here are some of the best foods that fight allergy symptoms and keep the sneezes sniffles, and watery eyes away.
Purple Foods: Red grapes, blueberries, cherries, and blackberries are all great sources of a unique compound called quercetin. This anthocyanin is what gives these foods their purple colour and protective abilities against allergy symptoms, as an antioxidant.
Dairy Products: Ricotta cheese, cottage cheese and yogurt are particularly good sources of an amino acid called N-acetyl cysteine. This protein also acts as an antioxidant to help break up mucus and ease congestion, while also promoting the natural defense system of your body during allergy season.
Herbs: Stinging nettle and butterbur leaf are especially helpful for reducing the common allergy symptoms. Stinging nettle works like quercetin, acting as a natural antihistamine and offering anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce allergy symptoms. Try it as a tea, or in supplement form for natural allergy relief. Butterbur leaf has been shown in clinical studies to be as effective as leading antihistamine drugs in controlling hay fever symptoms.(1)
Spices: This yellowish spice is used traditionally in Indian cuisine and adds a warm flavour to foods. The anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy abilities of turmeric are due to the content of a compound in the root spice called curcumin. Studies have shown that consuming 1,200 mg a day of this compound was comparable to phenylbutazone (NSAID) therapy (300 mg/day) after two weeks.(2)
1. Schapowal A, Study Group. Treating intermittent allergic rhinitis: a prospective, randomized, placebo and antihistamine-controlled study of Butterbur extract Ze 339. Phytother Res. 2005 Jun;19(6):530-7.
2. Preliminary study on antirheumatic activity of curcumin (diferuloyl methane). The Indian journal of medical research 71: 1980 Apr pg 632-4.
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