Herbs, Vitamin C, and Folate-Rich Foods Help Fight Spring Allergies
Spring allergies cause a host of symptoms that can range from mild to severe. Many resort to taking prescription or over-the-counter drugs such as antihistamines and steroids, which may not be completely safe or without side effects. A healthy alternative is to include foods in your diet known to be beneficial for reducing inflammation symptoms from allergies.
Foods that are generally rich in vitamin C are known to ease allergy symptoms. These include common grocery items like broccoli, citrus fruits, and green leafy vegetables. Researchers have found that consuming about 500 mg of vitamin C a day can help improve symptoms. By eating a variety of vitamin C-rich foods in a day, such as oranges, grapefruit, kale, and collard greens, in the form of snacks or meals, one can avoid having to depend only on medication.
Elderberries are a fruit rich in flavonoids, known to strengthen one’s immune system, and relieve symptoms of flu and allergies. Garlic and onions are rich in a substance called quercetin, which is helpful in fighting allergies by acting like an antihistamine. Parsley, a common food ingredient, also exerts anti-histaminic effects.
Other alternatives to natural treatment of spring allergies include herbal supplements like butterbur, which scientists claim is as effective as the prescription antihistamine cetirizine (Zyrtec). It has been shown to relieve symptoms like sneezing, itching, runny nose, stuffiness, and watery eyes in less than a week.
Zerbe, L. “10 Foods that Fight Spring Allergies.” Rodale. 2012 April.