Higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere have led to more potent pollen. Warmer temperatures have led to earlier springs and longer allergy seasons. If you suffer from spring allergies, that means a longer period of time being just plain miserable.

The good news is that natural allergy relief is as close as your local grocery store. Foods rich in vitamin C and folic acid help reduce the inflammation associated with allergic reactions.

Chocolate. If you have a sweet tooth, you’re gonna love this! Cocoa has been found to have some anti-allergy properties by reducing the body’s ability to synthesize immunoglobulin E (IgE).  IgE  has an essential role in most types of sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, and food allergies.

Red grapes, blueberries & red wine. What do berries and grapes in common? A compound called resveratrol.  A study published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that resveratrol helped suppress the IgE allergic responses. Did you need another reason to love red wine?  I didn’t think so.

Onions & Garlic. Quercetin is another secret weapon in the battle against allergies. One of the most abundant dietary flavonoids, it acts like an antihistamine. Onions, garlic and even apples are packed with quercetin.

The C Team

Cruciferous vegetables are from the family of foods called Brassicaceae or  Cruciferae, and include cauliflower, cabbage,

bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and similar green leaf vegetables. Packed with vitamin C, they have been shown to clear out blocked-up sinuses.

Pineapple contains not only vitamin C, but an enzyme called bromelain, a powerful anti-inflammatory and sneeze-stifling supplement. Research shows that bromelain can ease sore throats and irritated sinuses.

Other great sources of vitamin C that can help you battle allergies include watermelon and tomatoes, both high in lycopene. Lycopene decreases the allergic response and the accumulation of symptom-producing cell types in the lungs.

Suffering from allergies this spring?  Maybe a little chocolate and red wine is just what the doctor ordered.

Andrea wants to live in a world where the neighborhoods are walkable, bike lanes are plentiful, and the food is fresh, delicious and readily available. A 20-year veteran of the health and wellness industry, she started her career in the fitness industry while earning a master’s degree in Exercise Science and Health Promotion, and then on to the burgeoning field of worksite wellness. Andrea has competed in collegiate level soccer, worked as a personal trainer, fitness instructor, wellness coach, and master trainer, climbed 14ers, and completed cycling centuries and metric centuries. All of these experiences give her the opportunity to view well-being from many different perspectives. When she’s not helping others to be their healthiest self, you can find her at a farm to table restaurant, down dogging at the yoga studio, or experiencing the Colorado landscape on a bicycle, snowshoes, cross country skis or on foot.