For many of us, the transition from winter to spring may not be as sweet as it seems. Plenty of sunshine and warmer weather also brings up an unwelcome response from our bodies. Yes, allergy, the bothersome retribution of the season. Dr Oz in his recent episode discussed this timely topic when many of us are reeling under allergy attack. The effective remedy could be right inside our refrigerators.
Christine, an allergy sufferer was in the audience and volunteered to share her allergy symptoms. The symptoms are very common and encountered by many of us, itchy watery eyes, sneezing and scratchy throat, however, the severity varies from person to person. Definitely, children experience the worst. Common allergy medications may not work every time and for all of us. Allergy is body’s response to ‘allergens’ or allergy causing substances. Whenever the body comes in contact with allergens, it produces a substance called ‘histamine’, that causes most of the symptoms we experience including itchy eyes, sneezing and scratchy throat. Most of the over the counter medications contain anti-histamines that block the effect of histamines thereby reducing the severity of symptoms. However, there are other factors that contribute to allergic response, such as leukotrienes, prostaglandins and other immunomodulators that do not respond to antihistamines.
Dr. Oz: Allergy Fighting Foods
Dr Oz provided an efficient way to reduce the severity of allergy attacks, through allergy fighting foods. He revealed an allergy fighting diet from breakfast through dinner that incorporates essential nutrients naturally working against allergic response.
For Breakfast: he recommended vegetables and fruits that contain enough vitamin A, C and E. Vitamin A is abundant in carrots and peppers and it helps with runny nose. Vitamin C could be found in any citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruit, also strawberries and could work to bump up our natural antihistamines. Vitamin E helps to ease respiratory problems thereby helping to breathe better. A good breakfast example could be an omelet stuffed with broccoli, asparagus and peppers to obtain the allergy fighting vitamins in the morning when the pollen (one of the potent allergens) counts are really high. People who suffer from itchy eyes could add rosemary leaves to their omelet as an additional component that is known to alleviate this condition.
For lunch: he put the emphasis on flavonoids. These are plant compounds especially found in dark colored fruits like apples, blackberries, blueberries and even grapes. Flavonoids are rich in anti-histamines and can work to reduce the classic symptoms of allergy. A typical lunch should contain any of these dark colored fruits in order to get their allergy fighting benefits. For an example, Dr Oz mentioned about chicken salad with red grapes and apples. Green tea, a good source of antihistamines and an overall health infusion can be added to lunch or dinner as well.
For Dinner: he talked about eating fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids. This particular kind of fatty acid has been touted by nutritionists to be good for cardiac health for a long time. However, it turns out that it also has anti-inflammatory properties and it supports respiratory health and aides in breathing during times of severe congestion. An example could be cooked salmon with freshly grated ginger on top. Ginger has been found to be effective against sinus inflammation and congestion. Using ginger with salmon doubles up their individual allergy protection benefits.
Dr. Oz: Allergy Headache Remedies
Some of us also experience headache during those intense allergy attacks. Dr Oz has some very specific tips for those individuals who experience headache during allergies as well as on a day to day basis and reach for that painkiller pill for much needed remedy. Dr Oz tells us that some of these headaches can be preventable. In his recent episode, he outlined the general causes for developing chronic headaches and how to avoid them. To start with, for a general understanding, he revealed a model of the human brain encased in the skull and pointed out how nerves travel into and out of the skull in order to explain how we sense the headache. He described that the empty space between the skull and the brain, which is normally filled up with blood vessels and nerves, is the area that senses the pain, not the brain. Most of the common headache triggers generally affect this area around the brain.
Common headache triggers sometimes are avoidable. Most common is ‘smartphone’. We all have it and spend a lot of time using it. However, continuous usage gives us ‘digital eye strain’ leading to headache. Dr Oz talked about his ‘20:20:20′ rule to avoid this. When looking at a smartphone, every 20 minutes, one needs to look at something that is 20 feet away for 20 seconds to avoid digital headaches.
The second most common cause is ‘painkillers’. The same medication that relieves pain can be a cause of more pain because the body gets used to it and insists on putting more in order to elicit a response. Dr Oz recommends pain medications should not be used more than 3 times a week.
The last common trigger that can be avoidable is ‘cheese’. Dr Oz mentioned that cheese contain a compound called ‘Tyramine‘ that has the ability to trigger headaches. It turns out that the more aged the cheese, the more tyramine it has. In order to prevent headaches from cheese we need to avoid the high tyramine aged cheese like blue cheese, swiss cheese and cheddar cheese. Choosing low tyramine cheese could prevent headache triggers in individuals that are sensitive to it.