Quercetin (pronounced kwair-sih-tin) is an antioxidant flavonoid found in many different fruits and vegetables. Evidence suggests that quercetin may also be helpful in reducing blood pressure, pollen allergies and possibly cancer risk. Research indicates that quercetin may slow the growth of, or even induce the death of cancer cells. A form of quercetin is now being used experimentally to treat some cancers.
Alternatively minded physicians have long suggested quercetin supplements to help ease pollen allergies. There’s good reason for the recommendation. A Japanese study of 20 people with pollen allergies found that quercetin supplements reduced eye irritation and itching. The subjects were given 200 milligrams of quercetin for eight weeks. Meanwhile, an animal study found that quercetin significantly reduced asthmatic reactions. Still other research has found that quercetin reduces the reactivity of mast cells, which release histamine during allergic reactions.
What You Should Take: To ease pollen allergies, start with 250 milligrams of quercetin daily. If it doesn’t alleviate symptoms, slowly increase the daily amount to 1,000 milligrams.