Hay-fever sufferers may think they’ve been spared this year, but experts suggest that although the season is starting late, it is likely to be severe.
Here are some supplements which may ease the symptoms.
Nettles contain histamine and formic acid, as well as vitamins and minerals.
Supplements containing dried nettle extract have been shown to curb the release of the chemicals that trigger hay fever.
Some studies report an improvement in symptoms. You can also drink nettle tea.
A tropical plant that appears to act as a natural antihistamine. It can reduce symptoms such as sneezing, itchiness and runny eyes and nose without causing drowsiness.
A recent Dutch study showed 75 per cent of those with hay fever reported a large reduction in symptoms when taking a supplement.
Beta glucans are plant nutrients found in yeasts on fruit and grains that are thought to normalise the immune system, reducing the risk of it overreacting to harmless substances such as pollen.
Dr Paul Clayton suggests the widespread use of fungicides and ultra-filtration of wines and beers is responsible for the lack of beta glucans in our diet.
A shrub that has been used to treat respiratory conditions.
The flowers and berries are thought to have anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties.
It contains anti-inflammatory agents and anecdotal evidence suggests drinking chamomile tea regularly helps soothe hay fever symptoms. After use they can be placed on eyes to reduce puffiness and soreness.
This alpine herb is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties to help soothe eyes and mucous membranes. David Hoffman, author of The Herbal Handbook, says it may act as a decongestant and anti-catarrahal.
A vine used in Ayurvedic medicine for various conditions and to boost immune functions. In one study, the majority of hay fever sufferers given 300mg of a standardised extract three times daily for eight weeks reported a significant improvement in symptoms.
Extracted from the bark of French Maritime Pine, this reduces the amount of histamines released and relaxes constricted blood vessels.