Help for hay fever sufferers

Summer isn’t rosy for all of us. About 1 in 6 of us suffer from hay fever in the UK. It often develops during adolescence, and leaves us with puffy eyes, sneezy noses, and itchy rashes – not much fun on a sunny day.

Many people reach for the antihistamines but there’s also some other options that could help to ease your hay fever symptoms.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is now a household name as an immune booster, with many taking a daily supplement.

Foods that are high in Vitamin C include: Papaya, bell peppers, dark green leafy veggies (e.g., broccoli, brussels sprouts), strawberry, pineapple, citrus fruit (e.g., orange), kiwi fruit.

If you’ve currently got hay fever symptoms, you may want to take 2,000mg Vitamin C on a regular basis. Since it’s excreted from the body within six hours, it’s best to take it in divided doses – either 1,000mg in the morning and 1,000mg at lunch or if taking larger amounts, 1,000mg four times a day.

Vitamin C promotes a strong immune system, immediately calms down allergic reactions and is also anti-inflammatory.



70% of your immune system lies in your gastrointestinal tract as your GALT (gut-associated lymphoid tissue). There are many dynamic immune modulatory functions the GALT is involved in, and maintaining a good balance of gut flora helps. This is why taking a good high volume; multi-strain probiotic may help reduce hay fever symptoms.

Fermented foods containing probiotics may also help.  Foods such as natural Greek yogurt, fermented vegetables e.g., sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles; miso (fermented bean paste), tempeh (fermented tofu), kefir, kombucha can easily be added to your diet.

This breakfast/snack of mixed berries, coconut yogurt, cacao powder and cacao nibs have a great combo of quercetin, vitamin C, raw honey, and probiotics to help hay fever.


One of the most persistent symptoms of hay fever is a stuffy nose. Turmeric contains curcumin, an antioxidant with many benefits including powerful inflammatory effects. This makes it a useful remedy in any hay fever sufferers’ itinerary.  You can add fresh turmeric to a curry or dried turmeric to warm milk to make a turmeric latte or consider taking a turmeric supplement.

If you’re going to take a supplement, look for one that contains black pepper, which contains piperine.  Piperine is a natural substance that greatly enhances the absorption of curcumin.

Omega-3 Fish Oil

Several studies have shown a positive link between increased omega 3 fish oils decreasing hay fever symptoms, which may be due to omega 3’s anti-inflammatory effects.

Foods containing higher amounts of Omega 3 fats include: oily fish (e.g., salmon, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, herring, trout), hemp seeds, walnut, flax, chia seeds.

Omega-3 may also be taken as a supplement – don’t exceed more than three grams daily from food and supplement sources.

Raw Honey

Locally sourced raw honey is thought to be helpful in reducing hay fever symptoms.  It’s believed that being exposed to the bee pollen may help develop immunity to pollen allergies.  However, hay fever may not only be due to pollen but also the grasses and trees that the bees don’t visit but it’s certainly worth a try as the immune-boosting benefits of raw honey may just help!

A dosage of one tablespoon of honey a day before the pollen season begins may build your body’s tolerance and keep away those stuffy noses and watery eyes.