Another Spring Returns
Each year, spring rolls around with relief from the frigid temperatures and snow woes of winter. For seasonal allergy sufferers, though, spring comes with a whole new set of pains. Like all medications, decongestants and antihistamines taken for allergies have their share of side effects, and aren’t recommended for long-term use. So, instead of stocking up on medication this season, stock up on these foods that help alleviate allergy symptoms.
Spring and summer are high time for fresh fruits, so you have multiple antioxidant-heavy, vitamin-rich options. Citrus fruits bursting with vitamin C, like oranges and grapefruit, fight histamines that cause allergy symptoms, while fruits high in quercetin reduce inflammation, which alleviates swelling in the nasal passages. Quercetin-heavy fruits include apples, pears, peaches, cherries and grapes.
Omega-3 fatty acids are health power houses that should be part of any healthy diet, but increasing omega-3 consumption during allergy season reduces inflammation and helps you breathe easier. Foods rich in omega-3s include fish, such as salmon, albacore and mackerel, nuts and pumpkin seeds, kidney and pinto beans, and avocados.
The spicy foods you eat that always open up your nasal passages, they do so for a reason. These foods contains chemicals that product their hot taste and cause their powerful effects on the body, which is why they are worth incorporating into your diet in greater quantity during allergy season.
Onions and Apples
Onions, like apples, contain quercetin, which reduces inflammation, but they also contain an enzyme known as lachrymatory-factor synthase, an irritant you know well if you have ever cut into a potent onion and welled up with tears. While it’s a pain to cry while cooking, it also clears out your sinuses.
Garlic and Ginger
Garlic and ginger both contain naturally occurring chemicals that reduce inflammation, according to UCLA’s Integrative Medicine, but garlic also thins mucus. The capsaicin in cayenne and other peppers are also mucus-thinning and stimulate the sinuses, which, according to UCLA, increases air circulation.
According to Time Magazine, a study of children in Crete found that those who ate diets high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil and fish suffered fewer symptoms of allergies and asthma. What you eat matters, and having a pantry full of foods that enhance immunities, reduce inflammation, and are high in antioxidants can get you through the allergy season without reaching for a bottle of pills.