Nutrition for Allergy Sufferers
||Your first step to allergy relief should be to reduce your total allergen load through environmental control and allergen avoidance, but you cannot ignore the importance of good nutrition in your battle against allergies.
Prescription and over-the-counter drugs simply suppress allergy symptoms, whereas proper nutrition (along with proper exercise and rest) will strengthen your immune system and help you avoid allergy attacks.
Vitamin C naturally lowers histamine levels and bolsters allergy-fighting hormones in the adrenal glands. (Histamine is the chemical in your body responsible for allergy symptoms.) Allergy sufferers should take 2,000 milligrams of vitamin C daily and another 1,000 milligrams during allergy season. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, tomatoes, and leafy greens.
Bioflavonoids are natural pigments in fruits and vegetables, and they also naturally strengthen the immune system and reduce histamine production. Bioflavonoids slow the breakdown of vitamin C in the body, thereby prolonging its benefits to your body. Foods high in bioflavonoids include green peppers, oranges, blueberries, grapes, and cherries.
Vitamin B5, or pantothenic acid, plays a central role in the metabolism of food and is often referred to as the anti-stress vitamin. Vitamin B-5 naturally stimulates antibody production and helps maintain a healthy immune system. Vitamin B-5 is found in many foods, and a multivitamin or B-complex vitamin would provide an adequate daily dosage.
Essential fatty acids cannot be synthesized by the body and must be obtained from food. Essential fatty acids naturally reduce the inflammation that accompanies an allergic reaction. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish oils and plant oils, appear to improve lung functioning in adults with asthma. Eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, and whole grains to get your essential fatty acids.
Avoid excess alcohol and tobacco, as both substances increase the release of histamine. To avoid unwanted exposure to toxic chemicals, eat 100% organic foods.