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  • Hay fever

Pollen season

Written by: Editors

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Pollen season is upon us. For those who suffer from hay fever, this time of year is spent waiting for the inevitable itchy eyes and stuffy nose. However, what many people don't know is that hay fever symptoms are directly related to the release of histamine in our bodies in response to allergens such as pollen. Histamine is a bioactive substance that plays a crucial role in our immune system, but it is also responsible for those pesky symptoms of allergies. Let's take a closer look at the mechanisms behind histamine and how they affect our bodies during pollen season.

What is histamine?

Histamine is a substance our bodies make in response to infections or contact with an allergen, such as food or pollen. It is mainly released by mast cells and basophils (blood cells), which are located in places that are in contact with the outside world, such as the mucous membranes of the nose and mouth. Histamine plays a key role in the body's inflammatory response and regulates various important intestinal functions.  

Where is histamine released from, and what does it do?

Histamine causes various reactions, such as dilation of the blood vessels (vasodilation), which, in turn, sets off allergic reactions such as a stuffy nose, itchy eyes or runny nose. It is also involved in the stimulation of gastric acid secretion, which is important for digestive health. 

  1. Histamine in the brain: Histamine functions as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system and plays an important role in the maintenance of sleep–wake cycles (circadian rhythms) and cognitive processes. 
  2. Histamine in the stomach: Excess histamine is stored in and released by cells within the stomach, which is a key factor for gut health and the regulation of gastric acid secretion. 

Histamine imbalance can lead to symptoms such as headache, itching, skin rash, fatigue and digestive problems. People with conditions such as histamine intolerance may need to adjust their diet to manage their symptoms. 

Histamine and hay fever

Hay fever, a condition that many people suffer from during certain seasons, has an association with histamine. When the immune system detects allergens such as pollen, it stimulates the mast cells to release histamine, resulting in symptoms such as sneezing, itchy eyes and a runny nose. 


Histamine is an essential chemical that plays a key role in allergic reactions and other bodily functions. Gaining an understanding of the impact of histamine allows us to better manage conditions such as hay fever and other allergic reactions. 

What can you do about hay fever? 

There are several things you can do to lower histamine levels in your body and reduce the symptoms of hay fever. 

  1. Change your diet: Some foods are naturally high in histamine or stimulate its release. Avoiding foods such as fermented products, mature cheese, red wine, citrus fruits, smoked meats, legumes and alcohol helps lower histamine levels. 
  2. Antihistamines: There are various antihistamines available that block histamine release to reduce allergy symptoms such as itching, sneezing and nasal congestion. They come in several different forms, including tablets and nasal sprays. 
  3. Natural supplements: Some natural supplements such as Vitamin C, copper and vita,i, have antihistamine properties, meaning they help reduce the release of histamine. 
  4. Air purifiers: Air purifiers remove pollen from the air and therefore reduce exposure to histamine triggers. 

It's always a good idea to consult a doctor before making any changes to your diet or taking supplements or medicines, especially if you have a medical condition or are currently on medication. At Dokteronline, you can request a consultation and get advice and guidance tailored to your needs. 


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