Hay Fever

Hay FeverWhat is Hay Fever?

Hay fever is actually an allergy brought about by pollens. These pollens are the fine powder that comes from flowers, trees and plants. They are the ones that are used to fertilize other plants.

 

The risk for contracting hay fever is higher in individuals who have already accumulated a lot of pollutants in their bodies coming from chemicals such as pesticides and paint sprays. These chemicals are considered as the sensitizers of hay fever since the nose and throat membranes already become inflamed and are actually worsened by pollens.

 

The body treats pollens as a foreign object, thereby increasing the inflammation, resulting to symptoms like that of a person having allergies. The more one is exposed to pollution, the more chances for one to suffer from hay fever.

 

What Causes Hay Fever?

Generally, it is the pollens coming from plants, trees and flowers that cause hay fever. But, it cannot be negated that there is a higher risk for developing hay fever if you are in constant contact with chemicals and other pollutants. In fact, those who are living in urban areas, where the use of chemicals is more frequent, are more prone to suffer from hay fever compared to those living in rural areas.

 

Diagnosis, Signs and Symptoms of Hay Fever

Some of the common symptoms are the following:

  • Runny nose
  • Stuffy nose
  • Watery red eyes
  • Itchy feeling in the eyes
  • Itchy nose
  • Itchy throat

There are instances however that the symptoms are not considered as ‘common  symptoms’ yet manifest hay fever. Some of these symptoms are:

  • Headache
  • Loss of smell
  • Pain in the face

In worst cases, the symptoms may be that of an asthma attack and one must be wary when the following are evident:

  • Breathlessness
  • Wheezing

 

Remedies, Treatment and Cure for Hay Fever

Since hay fever is primarily caused by pollens, and puts those persons in close contact with chemicals and other allergens at risk, it is therefore important to ensure a good diet and a healthy lifestyle.

Diet for Hay Fever

  • Go for organic foods. This helps in lessening your exposure to foods that contain additives or preservatives. Foods that are not organic are also sprayed with herbicides and a variety of pesticides that are eventually absorbed by the plants. Just consider this. Non-organic lettuce is sprayed around 11 times before they get harvested!
  • Avoid dairy foods since these could exacerbate your allergic problems. Don’t take in milk for a week. You also have to avoid chocolates and different forms of cheeses.
  • Stay away from foods that have a high content of saturated fats. Some of these foods are Danish pastries, croissant and meat pies.
  • Also avoid white-flour based foods like biscuits and cakes.
  • Sugary foods must be avoided too. Puddings and sweets have to be avoided because sugar lowers the immune function.
  • Take in lots of onions and garlic. These spices contain quercetin, a flavonoid that could help in reducing allergic reactions.
  • Nettle tea could also help in easing the symptoms.
  • Fresh juice made from beetroot, garlic, artichoke, carrots and apple could help in strengthening the immune system.
  • Fruits that have a lot of bioflavonoids like strawberries, blackberries, kiwi and blueberries could help in protecting the mucous membrane.

Vitamins, Minerals and Herbs for Hay Fever

  • Quercetin (400mg, taken 3 times a day). This helps in reducing puffy eyes and nose irritation. This has been considered as a natural antihistamine.
  • Vitamin C (2-3g daily in ascorbate form). This is a milk antihistamine.
  • Ginger, garlic and horseradish tincture could help in easing congestion.
  • Multivitamins. Take those that have high dosage of the B vitamins.
  • Probiotics. This could help in promoting healthy bacteria in the body. It could heal the walls of the gut and also boost immune function.

Helpful Suggestions

  • Before the hay fever season, buy honey and take one spoonful a day for dessert. The pollen contained in the honey could help in protecting you from suffering from hay fever.
  • If you are already suffering from hay fever, you could use essential oils of Melissa and basil so that the sinuses could be cleared. You could put some drops of these oils on a handkerchief. These oils could also be massaged onto the throat and chest if they are mixed with almond or jojoba oil.
  • Invest on an ionizer so that there would be lesser number of allergens in the atmosphere.
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