With the warm months coming to an end, the sounds of summer are quickly being replaced by the unwelcomed sounds of allergy season: sneezing, stuffled noses, and congested coughs.
Seasonal allergies, or allergic rhinitis, are brought about by excessive exposure of seasonal irritants to the respiratory system. These microscopic, airborne irritants include ragweed, dander, and pollen from grass, trees, and flowers. They are at their most concentrated levels during the Spring and Fall months and cause miserably unpleasant symptoms such as:
There are a variety of ways to combat the relentless effects of seasonal allergies, the most common being:
Prescription and over-the-counter medications
Keeping your personal exposure to the allergens at a minimum
Maintaining the cleanest indoor air as possible
Additionally, however, simple changes and/or additions to your diet can go a long way in preventing and fighting allergies. The following four foods have impressive allergy fighting attributes. Consider adding one – or all – of them to your plate for a breathe-easy, sneeze-free allergy season this year!
Yogurt – Yogurt contains probiotics which help to level the immune system, lessening its sensitivity to irritating allergens.
Berries – These little fruits contain the compound quercetin which blocks the effect of allergy-inducing histamines.
Green Tea – This refreshing beverage is overflowing with not only quercetin, but also epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG, which plays a major role in decreasing the creation of mucus.
Walnuts – Walnuts are rich in magnesium and vitamin E. Magnesium fights the wheezing that accompanies asthma, while vitamin E boosts immunity and fights inflammation which is often caused by seasonal allergies.