Several studies have shown the positive impact that vegan diet can have on gut microbiota1. At the same time several studies have shown the connections between a gut in a poor status and the occurrence of allergic reactions1,2. Can vegan diet play a role in the reduction (or elimination) of allergic symptoms? Has any study been conducted on this topic?

  • I haven't read the studies, but if the conclusions you've advanced are true it seems that you've answered your own question. – Scb May 31 '17 at 21:14

I assume you are asking about allergies unrelated to foods that are normally excluded from a vegan diet like eggs and dairy. So the question would be whether a vegan diet might reduce symptoms from allergies to non-food items like pollen, dust, mold, animal dander, etc.

An epidemiological study on diet, asthma, and allergies from 2001 showed that young adolescents (age 13-14) had decreased symptoms of wheeze and allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (runny nose, sneezing) associated with increased consumption of cereal and rice, protein from cereals and nuts, starch, as well as vegetables and vegetable nutrients. A more recent meta-analysis from 2017 concludes:

Fruit and vegetable consumption appears to be protective against asthma.

And a recent 2016 publication suggested that high-fibre diets may be beneficial for those suffering from allergies.

... gut microbiome-derived short-chain fatty acids produced from a high-fiber diet have been shown to protect against allergy.

I also came across non-scientific anecdotal evidence of allergy relief after adopting a vegan diet.

I went vegan around March/April last year, so right before summer. I can definitely say that last year my pollen allergy was a lot weaker than it had been the years before.

The evidence is far from conclusive, but it seems safe enough to recommend a diet higher in whole fruits and vegetables (and other foods containing dietary fibre) to somebody looking for ways to mitigate allergy symptoms.

  • 1
    To add a non-scientific anecdotal counter-evidence, I have not noticed any change in severity of my pollen allergy after switching from omnivorous to vegetarian, nor from vegetarian to vegan diet. I appreciate the research you made to answer the question however, it would be great if I could somehow mitigate my very annoying allergy :). – Alexander Rossa Jul 14 '18 at 0:16

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.