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Dietary Tips for Sinusitis

Spring is just around the corner --- blooming trees and pollen in the air. For millions, this equates to inflamed sinuses, better known as sinusitis. For those who suffer from sinusitis, symptoms can include cough, headaches, runny nose, stuffy nose, facial pressure or pain, fatigue, and even dental pain.

There are lots of anti-histamines and anti-allergy medications on the market, but what can you do nutritionally to help decrease symptoms? Try out some of these tips: 

Four spoons with spices in them
  • Did you know that spices and herbs such as ginger, onion, garlic and cayenne contain active compounds that can help decrease post-nasal drip, reduce nasal congestion and improve the flow of mucus making your sinuses less inflamed! Add garlic, onion and cayenne pepper to food or make a cup of ginger tea to help soothe aching sinuses.
  • Vitamin C is an antioxidant and natural anti-histamine. Vitamin C is found naturally in lots of fruits and vegetables including bell peppers, guava, mango and kale. Supplements are also available over the counter. Aim for 500-1500 mg Vitamin C daily.
  • Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric root, and EGCG, the antioxidant found in green tea, have both been found to decreased mucous secretions, leading to less runny noses. There are several teas on the market today with both turmeric and green tea in a variety of flavors. Pick some up the next time you are at the grocery store.  

Above all, stay hydrated! Dehydration will only make facial pain and headaches worse. Simple rule of thumb --- to figure out your hydration needs, multiply your body weight in kilograms (1kg = 2.2 lbs) by 35 to find out the number of liters fluid to drink daily.