Histamine is a natural compound in the body that triggers an inflammatory response due to allergens or injury. This natural compound increases blood flow to your cells, and helps your body fight infection. However, overproduction of histamine can produce unwanted allergy symptoms such as itching, watery eyes, and nasal congestion. Foods with antihistamine properties can improve your allergy symptoms, and reduce occurrence of future episodes by strengthening the immune system.
Salt is a natural antihistamine. Anti-histamines block the affects of histamine in your body, preventing allergic response. According to Dr. James T C Li, an allergy and asthma specialist at Mayo Clinic, rinsing the nasal passage with a saline solution can help to relieve nasal congestion. Saline nasal mist sprays and neti pot solutions can be purchase at your local pharmacy, but homemade solutions are just as effective. Also, sore throats can be relieved by gargling with salt water, according to the Southern University of Illinois.
Vitamins A, C and E
The most powerful antioxidants are vitamin A, C, E. These vitamins have the ability to reverse free-radical damage in the body and strengthen the immune system, which can decrease allergic response in body. Vitamin C, which protects cellular membranes, are found in citrus fruits such as grapefruit, oranges, lemons, limes, broccoli and dark leafy greens. Vitamin A is found in carotenoid vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, ,sweet potatoes, squash, apricots, and dark leafy greens. Vitamin E, which also protects against cellular oxidation, is found in almonds, sunflower seeds, dark leafy greens, avacados and vegetable oils.
Digestive enzymes such as papain, found in papaya, and bromelian, found in pineapple, can decrease inflammation, allergic response, and can aid in digestion. Quecetin is another antioxidant that occurs naturally in fruits and vegetables such as citrus fruits, apples, red onions, parsley, and in tea and red wine. Omega-3 fatty acids are a known anti-inflammatory agent found in flax seeds, walnuts, and cold-water fish such as salmon.
Roots and Spices
Roots and spices with strong, pungent flavors such as ginger, garlic, horseradish, wasabi, ginger, tumeric, cayenne pepper are especially powerful immune boosting anti-inflammatory agents, due to the fact that many of these are also anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-parasitic in nature.
- Livestrong.com; My Plate