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Foods That Lead to Congestion

By Sara Butler

This time of the year, feeling stuffy is almost a given. This season lends itself to stuffy noses, even when you're not sick. If you are experiencing this, then part of the problem may be what you're eating. If you find yourself congested more often than not, then it may be due to what you're putting on your plate. Here are some of the most common offenders of congestion so you can avoid them if you find they're causing you problems.

What's Going On?

Some foods impact people more than others, it largely depends on your body. If your body doesn't like a substance or finds it irritating, then it will create more mucus in an attempt to flush out the irritating substance. The problem is that all that mucus just irritates things even more, making you feel stuffy.

Refined Sugar

Sugar is a food that is very pro-inflammatory, so it kicks up the production of mucus in the body. A little bit of sugar won't cause problems, but if you eat a lot of sugar and your body is sensitive to it, then you may be in trouble. Refined sugar is hidden in a lot of foods, so make sure to check the ingredients list on foods you buy to make sure more sugar isn't sneaking into your diet.

Spicy Foods

Some people are sensitive to spicy foods thanks to the histamines your body creates, which can be triggered by indulging in something a little spicy. If you already have allergies, your body is already making histamines. Adding spicy foods to the mix can make you even more uncomfortable. It may be best to lay off the spice when you're in the midst of allergy season.


Dairy products tend to thicken mucus, which means that the mucus takes longer to flush out of your system. The problem is, studies have found that dairy tends to make mucus thicker as well as kick up its production, which can leave you feeling congested and miserable. You may want to find other sources of calcium in your diet if milk becomes a problem for you.


Tomatoes have a reputation as an anti-inflammatory food, but they can sometimes make your allergies worse. That's because they can increase your histamine levels and promote the production of mucus. If you have a problem with acid reflux, tomatoes can make the problem worse.

If you're struggling with congestion, then avoid these foods to help you feel better!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Mukilteo, Wash.

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