Well, they’re regular foods but if you eat them in sufficient quantity they’ll give you allergy relief – especially the airborne variety. The problem most of us have is that we lead crazy lives with too much to do and too little time. So, what do we do? We skimp out on the basics of life-like healthy, nutritious foods made by nature to fuel our bodies. You wouldn’t put diesel in a gasoline engine, would you? So why insist on putting highly processed foods and chemicals in your body when it’s not designed to run on that?
Study in Crete
Look at the Island of Crete (Mediterranean sea – near Greece), a place with plenty of airborne allergens. In a study conducted in 2007 about airborne allergies, it was reported in Thorax that out of 690 island children, 80% of children who ate fruit at least twice a day and 68% of vegetables at least as often had fewer allergy symptoms than those children who ate less.
What’s an allergy?
An allergy is when an
“overactive immune system responds to harmless substances as if they could cause disease. Inflammation is an early step in the immune response. Most of the foods that relieve allergies are anti-inflammatory, modulating the immune system response.”
— Leo Galland, MD, Foundation for Integrated Medicine – September 15, 2009, Bottom Line Personal.
So what super foods are anti-inflammatory? Here’s some feedback from the Crete study:
Crete Study findings:
Year-round, try to eat at least two pieces of fresh fruit or portions of berries daily. If you are especially congested, the following are the best choices – an orange, a cup of strawberries, an apple, a cup of grapes or a medium-sized wedge of watermelon. The skins of red grapes are loaded with the antioxidant resveratrol which was found to relieve wheezing in the Crete study.
Nuts, in particular almonds, hazelnuts and peanuts, are a great source of vitamin E, which helps decrease inflammation. Eat a single one-ounce helping of any of these nuts every day year-round to help prevent symptoms. If you do have symptoms, increase the servings – try two tablespoons of peanut butter and one ounce each of hazelnuts and almonds a day.
Cold-water fish (mackerel, trout, wild salmon, herring and sardines), as well as walnuts and flaxseed, contain omega-3 fatty acids, which also help reduce inflammation. Eat a minimum of two servings of cold-water fish every week all year-round and three servings during the seasons when you get airborne allergies. Also have 12 walnuts and one tablespoon of ground flaxseed each day.
Oysters, shrimp and crab, and legumes, whole grains and tofu, are all rich in zinc, which have antibacterial and antiviral benefits that provide relief for immune systems overtaxed by battling allergies. Try eating six oysters, six shrimp or a couple of crabs every week, and two times that when your allergy symptoms bother you. Also have one helping of whole grains (unless you are wheat intolerant or have celiac disease) and either beans or tofu once a day.
Other beneficial foods: Tea (black or green) – drink first thing in the morning with lemon and honey to activate the cilia, the small hairs in the nose that sweep pollen and dust from the airway.
to be continued tomorrow …