Millions of people suffer from hay fever every year but amazing new supplements like Altrient C’s liposomal vitamin C can offer new hope for sufferers.
According to the Met Office there are three main pollen seasons. If your hay fever falls on roughly the same month(s) each year then you can easily gauge which type of pollen your body is reacting to.
Tree pollen season tends to be from late March to mid-May. Typical tree pollens which people react to include hazel, yew, alder, elm, willow poplar, birch, ash, plane, oak, lime and pine.
Grass pollen season tends to be from mid-May to July and all the grasses fit into the poaceae family and 95% of hay fever sufferers are allergic to grass pollen.
Finally weed pollen season tends to be from the end of June to September and common weeds that trigger hay fever include dock, mugwort, nettle, oil seed rape and plantain.
The histamine connection
Hay fever is a standard allergic reaction that takes place when levels of pollen are detected by cells that line the airways. These cells release large quantities of histamine to alert the body that a potentially hazardous substance is finding its way into the body.
The release of histamine attracts special immune cells into the airways which function to destroy the pollen and flush as much of the pollen away from the body as quickly as possible.
Mucus is used to wash the pollen from the eyes and nose and sneezing is initiated to expel pollen from the lungs. The histamine also triggers inflammation and swelling which functions to contain the pollen and prevent it from reaching other areas of the body. This inflammation causes redness, soreness and even headaches to occur.
Here are our 5 top tips for an easier hay fever season
Boost your immune system with liposomal vitamin C
Vitamin C has a great reputation for destroying viruses and boosting the immune system but who’d have thought that this clever little vitamin could also disarm and neutralise the powerful actions of histamine!
Itchy eyes, sore throat, streaming nose and bouts of sneezing are all signs that your hay fever season has begun and it’s histamine that trigger allergic reactions to pollen.
Vitamin C has natural anti-histamine activity meaning that this clever little vitamin helps to dampen down the cellular response to mobilised histamine – a bit like putting a dampener on the fire.
When it comes to selecting a good vitamin C product for your hay fever tool box make sure you choose a liposomal vitamin C such as Altrient C as this form has a superior absorption and bio-availability when compared to other (often cheaper) forms of vitamin C.
Use a barrier
It’s virtually impossible to filter pollen out of the air you breathe but it’s not impossible to reduce the amount of pollen entering your airways!
There are plenty of bees wax natural barrier creams that can be used within the nostrils that capture pollen entering the nose preventing it from coming into contact with your cells. Many sufferers find this a good way of reducing their symptoms.
An age-old tradition for combating hay fever is to include locally produced honey into your diet. This helps your body build a natural defence to the pollens that you are exposed to within your local area.
Wine, alcohol and beer all worsen the symptoms of hay fever and this is because all of these alcoholic drinks also contain histamine the chemical that naturally sets off the allergic reaction to pollen.
According to research published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition a diet rich in omega-3 fats decreases the risk of hay fever. This makes it important for you to include oily fish, walnuts, flax seeds and chia seeds into your daily diet for a hay fever season omega-3 boost!
It is also worth remembering that stress can heighten the body’s sensitivity, meaning that lower levels of pollen that would normally be tolerated suddenly start to trigger symptoms. Other air pollutants such as traffic fumes can also irritate the nasal passages making it easier for hay fever to take a grip.
And, foods such as dairy products encourage the body to produce more mucus which can enhance the severity of your allergic reaction.
So, get prepared for this hay fever season so you can really start to manage your symptoms and take back control of your summer!
Susie Perry Debice
BSc Hons, Dip ION Food Scientist and Nutritional Therapist