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 Diet & Nutrition

March 2012
Sinusitis De-clogging is the Mantra
Nitika Sharma
Sinus congestion can ruin a perfectly fine day. When your sinuses clog, the world looks different, irritating and annoying. The best, the fastest and the easiest way to get rid of this uneasy feeling is to try de-clogging foods and non-mucous forming diet.

The best natural foods to unclog your sinuses are as follows:

Drink plenty of water: It helps dilute secretions, loosens up hardened mucous and promotes drainage. Soups and juices are commonly recommended during such times, though sweetened juices should be avoided since sugar and additives can promote the thickening of mucous.

Have a hot cup of tea: This is an effective home remedy for relieving pressure and draining mucous. Drink up caffeine free herbal teas and avoid flavours that give you heartburn. Ginger tea helps treat a congested nose.

  • Chocolate, soda, candy, pastries and other foods high in refined sugar as sugar helps the bacteria to proliferate.
  • Wheat, oats, rye, and barley contain gluten. Undigested gluten acts as an irritant to the body, increasing mucous production resulting in nasal congestion.
  • Avoid sodas, alcohol and late night meals to prevent acid reflux.

Add spices to your food: Garlic, chilli powder, onions, cayenne pepper, black pepper and other spicy foods stimulate the thinning of the mucous to water, soothing dry sinus passages and encouraging drainage. Chewing a candy with a strong peppermint flavour can also help. However, take caution in adding spices because too much can cause heartburn or acid reflux, thereby worsening the sinusitis.

Foods rich in Vitamin A: They help to prevent and cure sinus infections by strengthening the epithelial layer of the nasal tract and sinus cavity. Some foods rich in Vitamin A include carrots, spinach, whole milk, pumpkin, egg yolk, apples, tomatoes, green leafy vegetables and beetroot.

Vitamin C for strengthening the immune system: It helps build the immune system and also fights microbial afflictions. Foods rich in vitamin C are lemon, orange, guava and grape fruit.

Oil of oregano: It is an essential oil known for its ability to strengthen the immune system and improve respiratory health. Add 2-3 drops of oregano oil to any juice and drink it 3-4 times a day to treat nasal congestion.

One of the best ways to cure sinusitis is to strengthen the immune system and the integumentary system by consuming a balanced and regulated diet. The crucial components of a balanced diet are --- vitamins, minerals and fibre. They are present in plenty in fruits and vegetables. Drink lots of water and take enough rest to prevent and cure sinusitis.

Experts opine that “Milk does not lead to mucous formation” (B. Wuthrich et al., 2005). Therefore, milk and all dairy products would not affect congestion or sinusitis. Only those who have previous allergies should avoid them.

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