5 Natural Ways to Fight Allergies
Not everyone welcomes Spring. People with pollen allergies may think their only choices are to be miserable, take drugs or stay inside. But there are nutritional ways to tweak your immune system so it’s not so sensitive to pollen, mold or dust.
Here are some supplements that can help:
Quercetin is a flavonoid found in onions, garlic, apples, red wine and green tea, can reduce itching red eyes, runny nose and scratchy throat by inhibiting histamine release from immune cells. Histamine amplifies the immune response by increasing capillary permeability and smooth muscle contractions.
Take one or two 1,000 mg tablets of quercetin one to three times a day during allergy season.
2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is the main antioxidant that patrols our airways, reduces inflammation in our lungs and the mucous membranes of our throat. One study found a five-fold increase in bronchial hyperreactivity in people with the lowest intake of vitamin C.
Taking 500 mg twice a day throughout allergy season may improve lung function.
Magnesium has a relaxing effect on smooth muscles, which can help relieve bronchoconstriction. Research shows that as magnesium levels drop, allergy and asthma symptoms rise.
It’s best to get about 350 mg a day, year-round.
4. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant that protects cell membranes and prevents damage to membrane-associated enzymes. Along with vitamin C, it shields cells directly exposed to allergens and airborne inhalants. Studies indicate lower levels of antioxidants such as vitamin E increase the risk of allergies threefold.
Take 400 IU of mixed tocopherols a day.
5. Fish oil
Diets high in omega-3s reduce the body’s response to chronic allergy and inflammatory conditions. Fish oil provides high levels of omega-3s, which help to reduce the body’s production of inflammatory prostaglandins, which are involved in allergic response. Fish oil can also reduce delayed-type hypersensitivity skin reactions, often simply labeled “dermatitis.”
Take about 3 grams of fish oil a day to fight allergies.
There’s no reason to suffer needlessly from allergies! Take advantage of dietary supplements to get your allergies under control.
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Article updated on: April 15th, 2011