If poorly managed, allergy impairs quality of life quite necessary, affects average growth in children, & causes a further economic burden to society.
What are anti-allergy foods? When the winter season starts, so does allergy season. The cold, cough and sore throat are some common seasonal allergies. Perhaps closely monitoring the diet; specifically, the foods one eats could alleviate some common allergy symptoms. Allergies happen because the body’s immune system overreacts to harmless substances, treating them as potential threats when they aren’t. However, no particular food can be used as a cure although an overall healthy diet and consuming anti-inflammatory foods high in healthy fats, omega 3, and fatty acids can help fight against allergies and be called anti-allergy foods. Fresh produce like fruits and vegetables rich in vitamins and minerals can prevent or combat specific allergies. They are stuffed full of nutrients that can keep you healthy and protect you from seasonal allergies. What is the role of the nutritional aspects of food allergy? Once an allergy is diagnosed, the food item must be obliterated from the diet. It should be ensured that related foods are not allergenic, ex- someone with peanut allergy must be tested for allergy with other nuts and legumes. It should be assured that the nutrients are given through other sources, especially when the allergy is to a base food like milk or wheat.
How food allergies affect nutrition? Explains Nutrition Expert Rohit Shelatkar (VP at Vitabiotics)
Due to specific food allergies avoidance of those foods containing the allergen is a must. That could result in the nutritional deficiency of that particular food group as well. It is essential to compensate for finding substitutes and meet the dietary needs with a balanced and diverse diet. Keeping in mind that finding all necessary nutrients is not quite possible from diet alone, supplementing your diet with a suitable multivitamin tablet/liquid could be the right way of balancing one’s nutrition. Few allergies affect nutrition absorption, and these are not seasonal allergies, though. Celiac disease is also known as a gluten allergy, primarily connected with lack of nutrient absorption. Lactose intolerance too can cause nutrition deficiency. Allergies that are related to the stomach are the ones that cause nutritional deficiencies, and one must look out for those.
8 foods that help curb seasonal allergy symptoms
- Yoghurt: Clinical studies have confirmed that people with allergies who consumed Lactobacillus casei (a probiotic found in yoghurt) had lower levels of the antibodies made by the immune system response to allergic reactions. Yoghurt is high in probiotics; hence, you can enjoy eating it without the sneezing and coughing. Probiotics help lower allergic responses and inflammation in the body. Try whipping up a yoghurt and fruit parfait instead of reaching for your allergy medicine.
- Apples and Kiwis: Do you know that apples contain quercetin (a chemical)? And this quercetin acts as an antihistamine. Hence, consuming apples twice or thrice a week may help alleviate allergies. Do you know that magnesium is adequate for combating allergies? And kiwis contain 17 mg magnesium per 100 gms and hence, it reduces the allergic response in your body. Some other foods that are high in calcium include cashews, almonds, avocados and tofu.
- Honey: Local honey has anti-inflammatory effects that can soothe conditions like eczema. A spoonful of honey can help relieve most allergy symptoms, including watery eyes and congestion because it contains the pollen that your seasonal allergies stem from. Honey has been reported to lessen signs in people with seasonal allergies. Honey has anti-inflammatory effects and is also known as a cough suppressant.
- Garlic: The garlic extract has been shown to decrease allergic reactions — and even prevent allergies and produce heat in the body. Garlic unbelievably is a superfood that can help treat and relieve those allergy symptoms. Garlic is one of the best natural decongestants too. Allicin, present in garlic, reduces the inflammation that is contributing to clogged airways and thin the mucus blocking the nasal passages.
- Salmon/Fatty Fish: Healthy omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish and other sources, have been known to ease allergy symptoms. Mackerel, salmon, sardines, trout, tuna, bluefish and herring are all great sources of omega-3s. Adults should get 8 ounces of low mercury fish per week. Strive to exceed or hit this target to increase your chances of allergy relief.
- Strawberries and Blueberries: Another seasonal fruit to add for winter allergies is to add in the diet. Strawberries make a delicious Vitamin C supplement. The quercetin in other berries can reduce symptoms like watery eyes, runny nose, swelling and hives. Blueberries contain natural-occurring chemicals, also known as salicylates.
- Green tea: New testimonies suggest that drinking green tea may provide some allergy relief. Allergy sufferers could add this popular brew to their sniffle-fighting arsenal. Researchers also identified a compound in green tea that blocks an essential cell receptor involved in producing an allergic response in laboratory tests.
- Matcha tea: It is possible that matcha tea provides relief and eases your allergies. According to Japanese researchers the abundant antioxidant compound (EGCG) in matcha tea, stops your body from creating an immune response to an extensive variety of allergens, including pet dander, dust and pollen.
Food Hypersensitivity: Nutritional Aspects in Diagnosis and Management by Holistic Nutritionist, Shikha Mahajan (Founder of Diet Podium)
Many common foods, including cow’s milk, peanut, tree nuts, chicken egg, shellfish, soy, fish, and wheat, may cause food allergies. The prevalence of those immune-mediated adverse reactions to foods ranges from 0.5% to 9% in several populations. In simple terms, the cornerstone Managing allergy is to avoid consumption of foods causing symptoms and to exchange them with nutritionally equivalent foods. Delay in diagnosis could also be an extra incremental factor. Thus, increased awareness of the acceptable procedures for both diagnosis and management is of importance.
Rohit Shelatkar (Nutrition Expert) shares foods to avoid allergies
Most allergies aggravate in the cold season, so avoid cold foods. Banana, yoghurt, ice creams can worsen the symptoms. Foods that are too spicy and have much heat like chillies also should be avoided.
- Fast Food: As fast foods contain high levels of saturated fats which only causes the immune system to produce more inflammatory cells, one should avoid fast food.
- High-Calorie Food: Simple sugars and processed food should be avoided or consumed in moderation. Instead, opt for nutritious meals including fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, fish and olive oil or healthier substitute to refined sugar such as jaggery/coconut sugar.
How to prevent and manage allergy with anti-inflammatory foods? Explains Dt. Shikha Mahajan
There are no known ways of curing allergies till now. Most people with allergies do fine as long as they don’t ingest the allergen. Often A strong allergy can be life-threatening being in the same room as the allergen, and the person must carry an epi-pen with them at all times. Food allergies almost always need to be prevented by avoiding the food in case. However, Anti-inflammatory diet helps ensure that allergenic like pollen or other seasonal allergies do not get as strong reactions, for this one can eat foods rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants like nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, lentils, oats, salmons, eggs, yoghurt, berries, citrus etc.
Takeaway tips to fight allergies naturally
There's much scientific evidence that entirely natural solutions may ease your allergy symptoms. Whether it's hay fever, allergic rhinitis, or seasonal allergies, numerous meds, both prescription and OTC, are available to combat these symptoms. However, natural remedies are entirely free of all the side effects of these. It should be noted that with allergies, the best thing is to prevent than trying to cure. Eating fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants, consuming omegas through eggs, nuts and salmon, and drinking lots of water is the best way to prevent allergies. Here are some natural methods to adopt-
- Cleanse your nose
- Try acupuncture
- Manage stress
- Herbal remedies
- Apple cider vinegar
- Visit a chiropractor
- Detox the body
- Probiotics in your diet
- Add essential oils
- Clean the house properly
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