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Allergy, Asthma And Nutrition


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Allergy, Asthma And Nutrition

Allergy, asthma and nutrition

A very small dietary change can make a huge difference to the quality of our lives. Let’s pay the farmer, not the pharmacy.

Pollen, pets, dust mites and foods are common triggers for skin allergies and/or asthmatic episodes. Sometimes a hyperactive immune system triggers a battle between our antibodies and some foods, creating all the familiar allergy symptoms. (See section on anti-inflammatory foods below)

Some allergies including eczema are alleviated by avoiding dairy, gluten, peanuts, eggs, honey and highly processed foods. Some of these are easy to identify through allergen tests. A dietary cure though is trickier, requiring careful monitoring & record keeping and will vary from person to person. Here are three tips.

1. Become familiar with anti-inflammatory foods. These include whole grains, tomatoes, green leafy vegetables, berries, cherries, oranges (in season), almonds, walnuts, olive oil, and spices like turmeric, ginger, garlic.

2. Choose natural and organic foods where possible. Chemicals in foods and vegetables include pesticides, fertilizer and synthetic preservatives, that can trigger allergies

3. Avoid sodas, ultra-processed foods, fried foods, sugar, HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) and sulfites. They do no good for your allergy or asthma.

Asthma: triggered by airway inflammation, but the right diet can help

While no diet can prevent or cure asthma, some foods have been shown to subdue or aggravate the condition. High saturated fats & processed foods containing preservatives like sulphites increase asthma symptoms. Natural, unprocessed vegetables & grains rich in lycopene, Vit D & E, fiber, and flavonoid-rich herbs & spices like ginger, turmeric, lemon, garlic, oregano fight inflammation, and help you reduce the severity of asthmatic symptoms.

Mediterranean diet to help your newborn breathe better

Built on natural whole foods, the Mediterranean diet is rich in antioxidants, fiber and good unsaturated fats. It’s no surprise that asthma sufferers have found relief from their symptoms when adhering to this diet. Studies have also found that maternal adherence to the Mediterranean diet transferred a protective effect on the newborns against asthma and allergic reactions.

Building immunity against allergies

Developing strong immunity and overcoming inflammation are important in the battle against eczema. Besides quercetin (a flavonoid) and powerful antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables, fiber rich wholegrains feed the good gut bacteria which in turn build up immunity. However, heavy metals in whole grain such as nickel and cobalt may trigger eczema. Eating whole grain together with food rich in vitamin C such bell pepper, oranges, will reduce the absorption of these heavy metals.

Eczema: skin allergies caused by irritants to the immune system

Eczema is genetic or triggered by pollution or stress. It’s also linked to undetected food allergies, but it’s recommended to test for food allergies instead of simply eliminating various nutritious foods from the diet. However, most physicians agree that highly processed foods and fatty, oily foods aggravate eczema. It’s also noticed that diets based on fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, antioxidant-rich foods greatly reduce the symptoms.