Hay Fever Diet
Hay fever is nothing but a form of allergic rhinitis, which occurs seasonally. It is basically caused by the stimulation of the immune system (IgE). Allergic inflammation takes place when the allergens enter the body via inhalation. This disrupts the normal functioning of the immune system. People suffering from hay fever will experience physical distress all along the nasal region.
Symptoms of hay fever can be reduced to some extent by controlling the diet and nutrition. Food state vitamins are also required for extra nutritional support as these are more easily utilized by the body. If you are prone to hay fever, a detoxing period is recommended to cleanse the system before the hay fever season (late summer to spring) starts. All these methods are extremely important to control hay fever. If not controlled properly at the right time, the allergy can become more serious.
Foods to Include
The following foods should be included in everyday diet to avoid hay fever:
- Foods rich in beta carotene such as red, orange and yellow colored vegetables and fruits. These are also enriched with bioflavonoids and vitamin C.
- Organic foods should be preferred over inorganic ones. This is because inorganic foods often have preservatives that are not good for health, especially at the time when one is trying to avoid the onset of hay fever.
- Dark green foods should also be consumed. They work as a treatment for hay fever by eliminating the excess toxins from the body. They are also rich in beta carotene. Foods like chard, watercress, broccoli, kale and seaweeds help to keep hay fever at bay.
- Supplements such as blue green algae, chlorella, spirulina and wheatgrass should be added in diet for avoiding hay fever.
- Bean sprouts and sprouted seeds must also be consumed in salads and soups.
- Garlic is very beneficial and reduces the excess catarrh.
- Yogurt should be included if a person is diagnosed with hay fever. It acts as mild anti-histamine.
- Pollen, half a spoon in a day, should be eaten as a precautionary measure.
- Aloe Vera should also be used as it has anti-histamine properties that could help keep you healthy.
- Oats contain vitamin B and minerals and thus should be taken regularly.
If you experience symptoms of a cold around spring time, you might have succumbed to hay fever. Consult a doctor for proper diagnosis as the cold symptoms could be signs of some other underlying infection or disease. Treatment would involve antihistamine medication, as prescribed by the doctor, a good diet, plenty of fluids, and rest.
Foods to Avoid
Some of the foods that worsen hay fever are as follows:
- Mucus forming foods
- All dairy products, except yoghurt. Soya milk products are more preferred over cow milk products.
- Do not consume refined foods such as white bread, white rice, brown sugar, white pasta, etc. Have whole grain versions instead, for instance, maple syrup, agave syrup, and brown rice syrup.
- Try and avoid pre-processed foods that comprise additives
- Alcohol should be restricted
- Tea and coffee must be limited as they contain caffeine
Hay Fever Health Tips
Some of the health tips to reduce symptoms of hay fever are as follows:
- Consume high amounts of EPA, that is, eicosapentaenoic acid.
- Consume high doses of vitamin E
- A nasal wash helps in removing the excess mucus from the nose
- Allergens like pollen or dust
- Mold spores
- Celery, raw tomatoes, apples, kiwi, etc.
The symptoms of hay fever differ from person to person, depending upon the immune system of each individual. Some of the common symptoms are as follows:
- Itchy, sore red eyes
- Excess catarrh
- Runny nose
- Problems in memory
Diagnosis and Treatment
Hay fever can be diagnosed by a special blood test. Eosinophil white blood test may help in diagnosing allergies. A skin prick allergy test may also help detect hay fever. A very easy and simple treatment of hay fever is avoiding exposure to pollens. People suffering from this disease must consult a doctor before the hay fever season begins. Some of the treatment options include:
- Chinese herbs
- Medical herbalism
- Bach flower therapy
- Steroid nasal sprays
- Reduce intake of oleic acid containing products, for example, red meat and seed oils
- Stay away from pollen producing trees, especially during spring
- Increase intake of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids
- Stay indoors during late spring and summers
- Clean the carpets every alternate day
- Avoid smoking as it is more likely to develop allergies
- Exercise helps to boost immunity of the body
- Electrostatic air filter should be installed in the car for ventilation
- Make use of wraparound sunglasses to prevent exposure to pollens