Can cauliflower help pollen allergies?

By: Contributors

Like other allergies, pollen allergies are an indication of an immune system malfunction. When you breathe in the pollen dust that plants release to fertilize each other, your body mistakenly thinks a dangerous substance is invading. In response, it releases an antibody called immunoglobulin E. This antibody then triggers a team of chemicals, including histamine, to neutralize the invading allergen. Most of your pollen allergy symptoms are a result of the histamine your body released to attack the pollen.

One way to treat the symptoms of a pollen allergy is to take over-the-counter antihistamines to counteract the histamine your body has released. However, some people are averse to using drugs and prefer to find natural ways to relieve their allergic symptoms. Vitamin C has gotten a good reputation as a natural antihistamine. Among the foods that contain vitamin C is cauliflower; thus, including a fair amount of cauliflower in your diet during allergy season is a good way to fight the symptoms. Other foods with large amounts of vitamin C that may be beneficial in reducing the sneezing, runny nose, itchy and water eyes and congestion are strawberries, romaine lettuce, mango, broccoli and kale.


In addition to eating foods with vitamin C, people who prefer natural remedies tend to include foods high in quercetin, which is a flavonoid phytochemical also said to control the release of histamine. Foods with good amounts of quercetin include tomatoes, romaine lettuce, kale and broccoli. Some other dietary ways of dealing with pollen allergies -- also called hay fever -- are by drinking clear liquids (like chicken soup) to thin mucous and by eating spicy foods (like cayenne, turmeric and ginger), which also help to clear nasal passages and relieve congestion.