Some supplements should be considered to ease allergy-related seasonal misery. Many of those mentioned below are sold in combination to give you the best chance at relief. Consider remedies before the allergy season starts. Symptoms are often easier to prevent than treat. Those with symptoms that last several months or longer will need to consider being more aggressive with their regimen.
Please note that many of these vitamins take at least 7-14 days to take effect, so allergy sufferers should time their regimens in anticipation of the season.
- Vitamin C. Vitamin C, at 1,000 mg daily, has shown benefit in balancing histamine levels [Source: Clemetson]. Made by the body, histamines are linked to allergy symptoms. Vitamin C has also been shown to help decrease the sensitivity and reactivity of our airways to histamines [Source: Bucca].
- Nettles (a.k.a. stinging nettles or Urtica dioica). Nettles have been found to be helpful with runny nose symptoms [Source: Mittman]. Dosage is 250 mg twice a day.
- Quercetin. With research to support its benefits, quercetin relieves nasal allergy symptoms, but clinically can take up to 2 weeks to take effect [Source: Otsuka]. To your regiment, add 500 mg of quercetin 2-4 times a day 7-14 days prior to typical seasonal symptoms.
- Fish oils (omega-3 fatty acids). Omega-3 fatty acids provide many benefits to the body, usually by controlling inflammation. Chronic sinus problems can lead to prolonged inflammation. Fish oils may help curb inflammation that leads to lower respiratory problems, as found true with asthmatics [Source: Nagakura]. Clinically, extra fish oil is very helpful for dry eye that may follow allergy symptoms.
- Turmeric (from the spice curry). Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory that may help with the inflamed airways that occur during allergy season [Source: Aggarwal]. Dosage is 250-500 mg daily.
- Bromelain. Bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapple, has historical use in nutritional medicine as an anti-inflammatory and digestive aid. Previous research has documented its effects assisted with the treatment of sinus infections [Source: Seltzer]. It’s commonly combined with the other nutrients and should not be used by those intolerant of pineapple. Take 250 mg twice a day.
- N-acetylcysteine (NAC). NAC has long been used to help the body deal with mucus in those with long-term disease [Source: Kiefer]. It is often used in combination with the other nutrients listed to offer relief for congestion. Take 600 mg daily.
For more information about allergies and allergy treatments, see the next page.