Hayfever

With Spring well underway and ,hopefully, a lovely summer just around the corner, we are, with the help of Raj at ‘The Body store’ bringing you some remedies to try and help those who suffer from this problem.
Hayfever affects millions of people each year with symptoms which include watery nasal discharge, sneezing, itchy eyes and nose. Hayfever is a seasonal form of allergic rhinitis and those who suffer can become irritable, exhausted and even depressed.
Although anti-histamine medication is available for sufferers, many opt for a more natural route to manage their symptoms. Thankfully, with a few diet and lifestyle changes, symptoms may be relieved, so summer can be enjoyed to the full once again.
A great deal of evidence suggests that allergies to food play an important part in hayfever. Some sufferers find that certain foods such as wheat and dairy products exacerbate their symptoms. If you suspect that your diet may be contributing to your allergies, be sure to see a nutritional therapist for advice, rather than just eliminating food groups. Eat plenty of fresh foods and include oily fish regularly, as the omega-3 fats they contain have anti-inflammatory and immune-regulating properties.
Additionally, certain nutrients may help. Vitamin C and other antioxidants are thought to provide an important defence, since oxidising agents can both stimulate bronchoconstriction and increase allergic reactions to other agents. Supplemental quercetin, selenium, magnesium and scutellariae have all been shown to help reduce the effect of hay fever allergens.
Taking regular exercise supports immune health as does managing stress and getting adequate sleep.
The four remedies mentioned above are stocked by the Body store. Vitamin C, Omega-3 and are well documented, however, two that are not so well known are Quercetin and Luffa.
Quercetin is widely distributed in the plant kingdom and the most abundant of the flavonoid molecules, quercetin is found in many foods, including apples, onions, tea, berries and brassica vegetables. It has many uses including as an anti-inflammatory where research has shown that quercetin inhibits the release of histamine by influencing two enzymes involved in its release from mast cells. Leukotriene synthesis is decreased through quercetin’s effect on prostaglandins. These are the chemicals of inflammation.
As a Pain Reliever, when compared to aspirin, quercetin has been found to relieve pain and stiffness naturally, whilst fortifying connective tissue. Unlike many glucocorticoids and drugs, quercetin does not cause damage to the gastrointestinal wall.
To help relieve symptoms of Allergies. The inhibition of histamine release by quercetin, prevents leukotriene synthesis and reduces the production of inflammatory prostaglandins. These factors are involved in the allergic response.
As an Antioxidant, Quercetin scavenges oxygen radicals and inhibits xanthine oxidase as well as inhibiting lipid peroxidation in vitro, this effect means that it also inhibits the harmful effect of oxidation of LDL cholesterol.
Luffa, also known as the Sponge cucumber, can also be used to relieve Hayfever, allergic rhinitis and allergies. Luffa is useful as part of a programme for reducing allergic reactions such as sneezing, itchy and runny eyes and nose, blocked or stuffy nose, wheezy chest, etc
This tropical plant is used with a variety of others to combat the symptoms of allergies, particularly those with hayfever-like effects.
The benefit of using this type of natural remedy is that it has none of the side effects common with conventional antihistamine-type medications, such as drowsiness, fatigue and dependency. It can be used long or short term, and is suitable for those sensitive to chemical medications.
There is very little research available to help us with our understanding of the action of this plant. Empirical evidence indicates its effectiveness, but as yet we have no clear picture of the mechanisms of action.
For more information and guidance call into speak to Raj at the Body Store,