How to Control Allergies with Smart Food Decisions

The food choices you make can have a tremendous impact on your allergies. Of course, when it comes to food allergies, the choices you make about what you eat can be a matter of life or death (in extreme cases). But even with more common allergies, like pet or seasonal allergies, you can make a lot of headway just by picking out the right food options.

As always, the general rules for food apply: Avoid toxins by cutting out processed foods, skip on foods that contain additives, and eat organic whenever possible (remembering that 100 percent organic is the best). Just taking these steps can do you a world of good because you’ll eliminate the toxic load from your diet and greatly reduce the stress you put on your immune system.

Here are a few examples of healthful foods that will help you keep your body in tip-top shape and less likely to fall prey to uncomfortable and dangerous allergies:

  • Fish and fish oil: Be sure to keep in mind — and avoid — the types of fish that commonly contain mercury.

  • Fruits: Apples, blueberries, and papaya are a great place to start.

  • Green vegetables: Try broccoli, spinach, Brussels sprouts, and asparagus.

  • Orange or yellow vegetables: Carrots, squash, peppers, and pumpkin are just a few examples.

Choosing locally grown or produced foods is another way to lessen your allergy troubles. One of the top choices is local honey, made by bees that live in your area. This may sound a little farfetched, but local honey can help you with your allergies.

All honey contains very small amounts of pollen, which bees constantly bring back to their hives after visiting hundreds and thousands of plants to collect the nectar that provides their food source. Local honey contains trace amounts of the types of pollen that are most common in your area — the pollens that cause your seasonal allergies to flare up twice a year (or more for some people).

When you eat the honey, you expose your body to just a little bit of the pollen — not too much. Over time, your immune system figures out how to deal with these allergens in a healthy, normal way, instead of going haywire and causing dreadful allergy symptoms like sneezing, wheezing, and itchy eyes.

Even if you haven’t had problems with food allergies in the past, it always helps to be alert when you’re eating top offenders like milk, wheat (gluten), eggs, peanuts, shellfish, soy, and tree nuts. If you experience troubling allergy symptoms after consuming these types of foods, consult your doctor.

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