Quercetin is a powerful antihistamine and though it is present at a low level in fruit and veg it is most concentrated in onions. According to researchers from a university in the Netherlands, quercetin works in a similar way to over the counter remedies by blocking the activity of mast cells in the nose and chest. To reap the benefits remove the onions outer layer and prepare, simmer on a low heat (avoid browning) and eat up! If you don’t fancy repelling everyone with a ten mile radius try quercetin capsules instead.
Lock lips with someone
Though you may not feel particularly in the mood for passion whilst runny nosed, a recent study conducted in Japan has found that kissing can reduce the histamine secretion in your body. Scientists from a hospital in Osaka found that a 30 minute kissing session significantly reduced the hormone that triggers the body’s response to pollen.
Eat local honey
Some hay-fever sufferers take a daily spoonful of honey from their local area as a way of desensitising. Though this is not a scientifically proven way of reducing hay-fever, pollens contained in honey are thought to help build immunity. Jonathan Brostoff, Professor Emeritus in Allergy and Environmental Health at Kings College London and Chairman of the Allergy Research Foundation, says: “This old folk remedy can work for some. But remember that bees only collect pollen from coloured flowers, as this type of pollen is heavy and sticks to the bee. Grass pollen is light and airborne and does not stick to the insect. Therefore, honey does not contain it and so won’t help to ‘treat’ grass-pollen sensitive patients.”
Block your nose
Try applying a thin layer of petroleum jelly to the inside of your nasal passages. Sounds bizarre but it actually helps to trap the pollen to its tacky surface stopping it from going right up your nose! Simple but effective.