Allergies can be a seasonal problem or all year problem. If you chronically suffer from allergies you could be low on some essential vitamins that help regulate the immune system. Here are 5 important vitamins for allergies that could help you get relief from your allergy symptoms.
1. Vitamin C for Allergies
Vitamin C could help your allergies fast. It is an antioxidant and works to lower histamine. Histamine is what causes many unwanted allergy symptoms.
Many fruits and vegetables contain vitamin C. Even though it is available in many foods many of us probably don’t get enough. If you are going through a stressful time (emotionally or physically) you will need extra vitamin C.
You can get more by eating more foods high in vitamin C or taking a supplement. Vitamin C is water-soluble and generally considered safe. Extra vitamin C is easily eliminated from the body without causing problems. You should start with a lower dose and work your way up. Starting with a high dose can cause digestive upset.
How Much Vitamin C Should You Take
If you’re having problems with allergies try taking 2gms of vitamin C. Some studies show it could help lower histamine levels by 38% after taking 2gms of vitamin C. I take 1gm morning and night. But when I feel allergies starting I take an extra 2mgs with quercetin and bromalin. For me, allergy symptoms improve within a half hour. If taking 2gms vitamin C doesn’t work you can try taking more or adding quercetin and bromalin.
Vitamin C doesn’t stay in your body for a long time. However, you can take this several times throughout the day for allergies. As long as you don’t experience digestive problems. Taking it with quercetin (one of my favorite things for allergies) can really help allergies.
Vitamin C helps your body absorb more quercetin. Taking quercetin with bromelain and vitamin C can be a fast way to improve allergy symptoms.
2. Vitamin D for Allergies
Vitamin D is something many people are deficient in. It is a fat-soluble vitamin that is stored in the body. We make it from exposure to sunlight. Most people spend their time indoors or live far enough away from the equator that during winter they can’t get enough vitamin D. It is difficult to get through food. Even with supplementation, it can be difficult to get to optimal levels.
Usually, food is the best way to get vitamins but a supplement may be required to get enough vitamin D for most people. Low vitamin D levels and allergies appear to be connected. It is uncertain if the allergies and stress on the body cause low vitamin D or low vitamin D levels can make allergies worse.
You can get your vitamin D tested with a simple blood draw. Most doctors are more than willing to do this. For want more in-depth information about vitamin D, you can read this article. If you are considering a supplement find one with D3.
If you are low on vitamin D it will take time to build up in your body and get to a good level. Depending on the dosage of vitamin D you take or the amount of sunlight you get it could take months to a year or two before you see levels improve.
This isn’t a quick fix but one that is extremely important for improving allergies overall.
3. Vitamin E for Allergies
Vitamin E exists in 8 different chemical forms. Alpha-tocopherol is the most studied and possibly the most beneficial. There have been some mixed studies on the benefits of vitamin E when taken as a supplement. Other forms of vitamin E can cause inflammation.
Avoid foods with soy oil and corn oil. These tend to have vitamin E that causes inflammation.
Increase foods like wheat germ oil, wheat germ, olive oil, nuts, seeds, and green leafy vegetables. These foods have vitamin E that decreases inflammation and can improve histamine levels.
4. Vitamin A for Allergies
Vitamin A improves many different functions in the body. It helps skin, hair, growth, vision, and immune function. It is critical for helping the immune system function. Many people in developed countries don’t have problems with being truly deficient in vitamin A. But they may not have optimal amounts.
If you struggle with allergies and are sick frequently increasing the amount of vitamin A you get could help. It is fat-soluble and stored in the body. It is possible to get too much. Avoid taking high amounts in supplement form. Instead, add in more foods with vitamin A.
This article has more information on vitamin A. It also has a list of foods high in vitamin A.
5. Magnesium for Allergies
OK, I know this is a mineral, not a vitamin but I am including it in this article anyway. Magnesium is, in my opinion, the master mineral. Magnesium is involved in hundreds of enzymatic reactions in the body.
There was a study where they measured histamine in mice who were fed magnesium-deficient diets. Once they were given magnesium histamine levels decreased within two days.
Magnesium can help with constipation, muscle cramps, headaches, heart irregularities, and many other things. You can get it through foods but it can be difficult to get enough. The good news taking a good quality supplement has very few risks. If you do start out taking too much there could be some digestive upset due to its laxative effect.
If you have kidney disease make sure to discuss taking magnesium with your doctor before starting. Kidneys filter out magnesium and if they aren’t working properly taking a supplement may not be a good idea.
Starting with a small dose of around 100mg-200mg. If you have no issues slowly increase up to 300mg-400mg. If your symptoms improve before a higher dose simply stop at a lower dose. I like to take it before bed to help with sleep. I find around 400mg works well for me.
You may not have an extreme deficiency in these vitamins but even slight ones can affect your immune system. Increasing foods that have these vitamins or add a few vitamins and you can see improvements fast.
These vitamins can be taken with over-the-counter allergy medications. Once you find the vitamins and supplements that work for you it may be possible to get off all your allergy medications.
The vitamins typically have fewer side effects (usually none) compared to allergy medication. They are cheap (although don’t go buying the cheapest you can find, stick to a reputable brand) and effective.
Vitamins work together. Even if you don’t want to take a supplement increase foods that contain all of these vitamins. If you are taking supplements continue for a few months before stopping. You may see improvements within days or it could take a few months everyone is different.