7 Ways To Beat Hayfever

So many people are struggling with hayfever right now including me. I'm not quite at the stage where I'm locking myself in darkened rooms with the windows closed, but it's still a war I'm fighting on a daily basis.

Hayfever, is an overzealous histamine response to pollen, moulds, grass and a whole host of other stuff that comes with spring and summer. Symptoms appear depending on when each allergen begins to make an appearance.

Hayfever symptoms can be amplified in pregnancy, and with no drugs (anti-histamines) to fall back on you might feel a bit desperate at times. Here's a quick guide to eating well to support your body (particularly your immune system) during sneezing season.

  1. Reduce avoid saturated fat - dairy and red meat. These foods can encourage the production of arachidonic acid which fuels inflammation, making hayfever symptoms worse. They also encourage the production of mucous so they are best left well alone if you are suffering.

  2. Reduce/ avoid sugary foods as they can weaken your immune system which will already be struggling.

  3. Eat lots of brightly coloured fruit and vegetables - the potent antioxidants found contained in the vibrant hues can help quench inflammation. Homemade smoothies, soups, salads and juices are the way to go.

  4. Include ginger - ginger is a great anti- inflammatory. Add to stir fries, make fresh ginger tea and enjoy hot or iced like this recipe.

  5. Quercetin, a flavonoid (antioxidant),can be useful in quenching allergies. Good sources include apples (raw with skin), onions (red and white), buckwheat, green tea, capers, red grapes, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, peppers (red and yellow) and shallots. Quercetin inhibits the release of histamine.

  6. Eat plenty of essential fatty acids found in oily fish, nuts and seeds. Alternatively you can take a good quality supplement.

  7. This has nothing to do with eating it’s just plain common sense but I’d overlooked it until recently: Protect yourself - wear sunglasses and use a barrier such as Haymax to create a physical barrier to pollen.

If you’d like some bespoke help to beat hayfever or any other immune related condition, like asthma and eczema please get in touch. This is the tip of the iceberg. There’s so much you can do to support your body.

Anna Firth