An allergic reaction means your immune system is responding to certain food, dust, pollen, or any other allergens by triggering a protein called histamine.
Histamine may have an inflammatory response to your healthy cells, by swelling them up and leaking fluid from them. (1)
Histamine intolerance in your body is responsible for all the painful symptoms of an allergic reaction. A seasonal allergy may get you down with symptoms like a runny nose, clogged up sinuses, chest congestion, and itchy-reddened eyes, etc. (2)
What are Natural Antihistamines?
An antihistamine is a drug that can prevent the activity of histamines. That means it can stop an allergic reaction and its symptoms from affecting you. (3)
The drug stores are full of antihistamine medicines. But these over-the-counter antihistamines come with the serious backlash of side effects, which may even outweigh their benefits.
Most of the antihistamines have sedating effects that can affect your normal life. In the long run, these drugs may cause memory defects, irregularities in heart rhythms, and hamper your psychomotor and cognitive functions. (4)
But you need not resort to these life-risking medications in case of an allergic outbreak. Numerous herbs, foods, and supplements can effectively work as natural antihistamines.
These natural antihistamines may work as alternatives to benadryl or other allergy medications. Natural ingredients are fully secure and at times more efficient in preventing the painful symptoms of allergy. (5)
Let’s dive in and learn all about these natural ingredients.
Quercetin is a potent flavonoid antioxidant that you get naturally in green vegetables, tomatoes, broccoli, onions, grapes, apples, berries, etc.
Health specialists often call it plant pigment because it is richly present in leafy vegetables and colorful fruits. Quercetin is you natural antihistamine to prevent an allergic outbreak. (6)
Quercetin can fight the free radicals in your body because it is antiviral, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. A quercetin-rich diet can lower the rate of respiratory inflammations, cancer, and allergy.
It can also provide you with longevity, improved heart health, stamina and strong immune system.
A study shows the positive effects of quercetin on the rats with respiratory allergies. (7)
Bromelain is a medicinal food enzyme. You can get it in plenty from pineapple juice and its stem.
Bromelain is also available in supplement forms. Bromelain as an antihistamine is especially active against respiratory inflammations, a symptom of an allergy.
A recent experiment shows the fascinating results of bromelain for allergy relief. All the participants took 400-500 mg for bromelain thrice daily to get rid of allergic symptoms. (8)
3. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant and can lower the oxidative stress in your body. It is a powerful source of natural antihistamine. You have plenty of vitamin C enriched fruits and vegetables at your arm’s length.
Some of these foods include kiwifruit, banana, tomatoes, papaya, berries, orange, lemon, broccoli, parsley, guava, etc. There are no toxic and harmful side effects of this vitamin.
You can comfortably treat the symptoms of seasonal allergies such as a runny nose, sinus pressure, chest congestion, etc. with this natural antihistamine. The health experts recommend intaking 2 grams of vitamin C every day to get rid of allergic symptoms. (9)
Papaya is full of vitamin C, antioxidants, and beneficial enzymes. Papaya juice can work as a natural antihistamine to prevent the activities of histamine in your body. You can also massage papaya pulp on your affected skin to relieve allergic rashes.
Jewelweed is a therapeutic plant of Impatiens capensis family. It has oval almost trumpet-shaped leaves. This savior plant in your backyard is a natural antihistamine. Jewelweed has chemical compounds such as lawsone that can counteract against the offending allergic reaction in your body. (10)
You can take some jewelweed leaves and the tender stems and crush them to release the juice. Apply the herbal juice to the allergy affected skin. The sooner you do this, less the risk of allergic reaction and developing a rash.
6. Stinging Nettle
Stinging nettle or Urtica dioica is a medicinal herb for Urticaceae family. It is a flowering plant and is native to Asia, Europe, North America, and Africa.
From ancient time onwards people have been using this pharmaceutical plant for relieving muscle pains, arthritis, eczema, gout, urinary dysfunctions, and anemia.
A recent study in Northwestern Health Sciences University, USA has come up with the revelation that stinging nettle can act as a natural antihistamine.
As an experiment 58 participants used 300 mg of dried and refrigerated stinging nettle leaves. They reported to finding relief from allergic reactions. (11)
Goldenseal or oregano root is a great home remedy for all sorts of digestive disorders, eczema, menstrual cramps, acid reflux, and allergic rashes. Its chemical component berberine is anti-inflammatory and can effectively bring down the symptoms of histamine reactions. (12)
You can boil goldenseal powder and apply the lukewarm tincture on the affected skin to relieve the symptoms.
8. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is a power pack of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Apart from stopping the histamine secretions and blocking the allergic symptoms in your body, it has some extraordinary health benefits. Vitamin A contributes to an improved vision, healthy skin, brain functions, etc.
You can add vitamin A rich fruits and vegetables to your diet for getting the very best out of this vitamin. Some of these natural antihistamine foods include: mangoes, carrots, cabbage, spinach, apricots, eggs, liver, green leafy vegetables, etc. (13)
Flavonoids are phytonutrients or polyphenols in plants. When you consume the produce of these plants as food, they can work as potent antioxidants in your body. (14)
Flavonoids are another source of natural antihistamines. Especially the carotene flavonoid in certain tea, sweet potatoes, strawberries, citrus fruits, red wine, and soy products can work as antihistamines. (15)
10. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega -3 fatty acids in salmon fish, fish egg, spinach, soybean, walnuts, flaxseed oil, cod liver oil, mackerel, hemp seeds, etc. are your natural antihistamines. They can prevent the outbreak of allergic symptoms.
Omega-3 fatty acids can fight inflammations and have a great contribution to lowering heart disease, arthritis, and cancer. Because your brain is full of concentrated omega fatty acids, it is also good for cognitive and behavioral functions. (16)
11. Fennel Seeds
They come from the aromatic fennel herbs and are an essential ingredient in Asian cuisine. These sweet-scented seeds contain a long list of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, quercetin, and flavonoids. (17)
Fennel seeds can effectively treat your allergic symptoms.
People use fennel seeds as a home remedy for stomach disorders such as gas, acid reflux, etc. You can munch on a teaspoon of fennel seeds few times a day or have a cup of fennel tea to relieve the symptoms.
12. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is rich in anti-inflammatory properties and flavonoids. This herbal tea has various health benefits apart from acting as an antihistamine.
Chamomile tea can relieve stomach pain and as an antidepressant can deal with your stress as well. (18)
Drink 2-3 cups of chamomile tea on a daily basis to lower the symptoms of allergy.
13. Fenugreek Tea
The aromatic fenugreek seeds or methi come from the fenugreek herbs. Fenugreek seeds have a long tradition of medical uses in the Indian subcontinent. It has a pungent taste and strong smell.
The anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties of fenugreek seeds make it a potent natural antihistamine. (19)
You can soak 1 teaspoon of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water overnight. In the morning, strain the water and warm it up. Mix a teaspoon of honey with the fenugreek tea and drink it up.
Garlic has a sulfur compound called allicin. Allicin is the primary healing agent in garlic. There are also antiviral enzymes hidden in every clove of this natural antihistamine. (20)
It is high in antioxidants and prebiotics to relieve common allergic symptoms like sinus pressures, respiratory problems, runny nose, headaches, itchy skin, etc.
15. Holy Basil
Holy Basil or Ocimum Tanuiflorum comes from basil family. People admire its subtle mint flavor. Basil is an adaptogen and a natural antihistamine. (21) It can stabilize your mast cells and neutralize the histamine intolerance in your body. You can prepare your salads with a garnish of freshly chopped basil leaves. Alternatively, you can treat yourself to a cup of basil tea to get the best out of this medicinal herb.
Thyme or Thymus Vulgaris is full of vitamin C, flavonoids, and antibacterial properties. These super chemical compounds make it an ideal antihistamine to fight off the inflammations and neutralize histamine activity. (22)
Peppermint leaves or Mentha Piperita is popular for its sweet menthol flavor. These aromatic leave have a rich store of flavonoids to fight against nasal allergic rhinitis. Thus peppermint makes an efficient natural antihistamine or H2 antagonist. (23)
18. Himalayan Salt
The aesthetic looking pink Himalayan sea salt is more than what meets the eye. It has an extensive list of therapeutic benefits. There are over 84 minerals along with calcium, potassium, iron, and magnesium (24).
For centuries people have used it for different home remedy. The antihistaminic and sulfur nature of Himalayan salt make it a potent remedy for the allergic rash. You can consume a pinch of salt when the allergic symptoms break out. You’ll observe the good results in no time.
You’ll be surprised to know that turmeric has a long tradition in Indian culinary and Ayurvedic history. As an antihistamine agent, it can boost your immune system and prevent histamine secretion.
The health benefits of this herbal root come from its most active compound- curcumin 1.
A 2015 medical journal on curcumin reveals some fascinating facts about curcumin 1; present in turmeric. It shows that curcumin 1 has strong anti-bacterial potency against four different types of infections. (25)
20. Thai Ginger
Thai Ginger or galangal is a citrusy flavored root that comes from ginger family. It is high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Thus it makes a great antidote to histamine or allergic reactions.
Experiments on its medicinal benefits have proved that Thai ginger can balance the mast cells of your body and stop anaphylaxis (26). It is also a potent agent to curb respiratory disorders, seasonal allergies, cold, and flu.
You can crush 2 pieces of galangal roots and prepare galangal tea. Drink this tea thrice a day to prevent allergic outbreaks.
21. Black Cumin Seeds or Black Seeds
Black cumin or black seeds come from the miraculous herb Nigella Steiva. Father of modern medicine Avicenna, mentions its medicinal values in his ‘The Canon of Medicine.’
A medical journal published in 2013, reports the anti-microbial, anti-oxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties of black seeds. It has the protein kinase C to fight against allergies and bronchial asthma.
Notably, it is a master in treating skin infections. An active component Thymoquinone is antifungal to cure skin infections. (27)
Black seeds can treat disorders of the respiratory system, kidney, heart, digestive tract, liver and boost the immune system.
You can use this kitchen ingredient generously to prepare your food items
22. Pomegranate Juice
You can resort to delicious pomegranate juice to prevent the activity of histamine in your body. This royal-red fruit is full of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, tannins and anthocyanins polyphenols. (28) These can be active antihistamine agents and curb allergic outbreaks.
Magnesium is responsible for initializing more than 300 enzymes and biochemical activities in your body. It is evident that a lower intake of magnesium enriched foods can lead to higher rates of inflammatory diseases among adults. (29)
So make it a point to add magnesium-rich foods to your daily diets to keep inflammations and allergic reactions at bay. Some of the magnesium-rich antihistamine foods include almonds, cereal, spinach, pumpkin seeds, yogurt, etc.
By now you have come to know that the solution to seasonal allergies is at your arm’s length. So don’t panic the next time you experience any of the usual symptoms of an allergic outbreak.
Natural antihistamines may act as substitutes for benadryl or other medications.
Moreover, it is advisable that you lead a stress-free life, indulge in physical activities, and take enough rest on a daily basis. Also do yourself a favor by avoiding foods that your body doesn’t agree with.
In case the allergic symptoms persist and lead to complications consult with a doctor.
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