Springtime is upon us! The cold chill of winter is finally fading and sunny days are ahead. But unfortunately for some people, springtime also brings with it the dreaded hayfever.
Whilst you may normally have reached for the Claratyne, Zyrtec or other antihistamine, these medications have not been proven safe in pregnancy and are therefore not recommended. Even in breastfeeding, these medications will pass into your milk so it’s best to avoid where possible. So what can you do to reduce the symptoms?
Try these super hayfever-fighting foods
Hayfever occurs when the immune system reacts to pollen from grasses, trees and flowers in the same way it would respond to harmful bugs and bacteria. This leads to excess inflammation causing common symptoms such as itchy, puffy eyes and runny rose. A healthy balance of intestinal bacteria can help balance the immune system and reduce this reaction. Probiotics can help support this balance. Lactobacillus plantarum is a specific strain of probiotic bacteria, which also provides potent anti-inflammatory action to further reduce symptoms.
As well as being great for morning sickness, ginger also possesses natural anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation, swelling and other hayfever symptoms. Try some raw ginger added to juices, ginger tea, ginger tablets or add some ginger to stir fries and curries.
Onion is high in quercetin. Quercetin is a flavonoid often found with vitamin C, which possesses natural anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties. Enjoy some red onion through salads or use brown onion in hearty soups and casseroles.
As with onion, garlic also contains quercetin to provide natural anti-inflammatory action. Garlic also posesses natural antibiotic properties, which can help to fend off further infection. Use garlic through your cooking or try the old fashioned remedy of taping a garlic bulb to the underside of each foot while you sleep. The garlic will seep through your blood stream overnight and you may even taste garlic on your breath when you wake. So probably best to warn your partner about this one!
Kiwi fruit is one of natures richest sources of vitamin C. Vitamin C supports healthy immune function as well as possessing natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties. Enjoy on it’s own, as a juice or toss through a tasty salad including other vitamin C rich foods such as strawberries, mandarins, oranges and mangos.