Some people find that altering their diet could help alleviate hay fever symptoms, which occur between March and September. According to a registered dietitian, here are the foods to watch out for if you suffer from Hay fever!
These are higher in histamine.” Histamines are chemicals that are produced by the immune system in response to an allergy. As part of the body’s defence system, they cause inflammation and symptoms such as a runny nose.
Most types of dairy make symptoms of allergic reactions more Dairy products like cheese and milk along with grains can stimulate the production of mucus in the nose making blocked noses and ears worse.
Booze contains histamines which can make those itchy eyes and sniffly noses worse during hay fever symptoms. Darker drinks like beer, cider and red wine are higher in histamines which can exacerbate symptoms.
Sugar and processed foods can also cause the body to produce more histamine. This could make hay fever symptoms worse.
Some Fruit and Veg
Sometimes people with hay fever also have to contend with the pollen-food syndrome, otherwise known as oral allergy syndrome. This food allergy causes a person to experience an itchy throat, itchy inner ear and swelling in the tongue or lips after eating some fresh fruits. The proteins in foods, particularly fresh fruit, resemble pollen, and so the body reacts accordingly. For example, someone who has a grass pollen allergy (hay fever in the summer), may react to melons, tomatoes, potatoes and oranges. Those with a tree pollen allergy (spring) should steer clear of apples, pears, peaches, carrots, almonds and hazelnuts.
Coffee is another drink that must be avoided. As well as triggering the release of the hay fever sufferer’s enemy, histamine, it has been found to cause liver congestion, which makes symptoms even more severe.
What should you have instead?
There are still plenty of tasty foods that aren’t just perfect for summer but can help ease hay fever symptoms too. Anti-inflammatory foods, such as berries, fish, and broccoli, are great at keeping swelling down. Pineapple is another tasty hay fever reliever, as it is full of enzymes that soothe inflammation. And if you run out of antihistamines, go for onions – they contain a natural antihistamine called quercetin, which calms cells that react to the allergens.