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The Calhoun County Gazette of Calhoun County Alabama presents local news, sports, and features of interest about the area. It is dedicated to the people of Calhoun County and to others who would like to know more about us and the great opportunities for travel, fun, and business in our region.
Feature Story 
Yummy Local Bee Honey Good for Allergies?
 
It just may be your local cure for those nasty summer allergies in Calhoun County, Alabama featuring Oxford Alabama, Anniston, Alabama, Piedmont, Alabama, and Jacksonville Alabama!
By Norman Morrison                    

 

Local Yummy Bee Honey may be what you have been looking for!
Local Bee Honey...Cure For Allergies?

     I have always been fascinated by how connections are made. In the case of this article about honey and allergies, it began with flux for lead.
            Ok, hopefully I have your attention. You see, among other things, I love shooting muzzle loading guns, and I like to shoot my own home made bullets.
            Bees wax is supposedly a good flux for melted lead…It makes impurities float to the top where they can be skimmed off, so that the lead that goes into the bullet molds makes better ammunition. Better ammunition makes for better shooting, etc.

Man makes bullets and discovers allergy cure!

            As luck would have it, I was out of the bees wax and mentioned it to my son who pilfered a mostly eaten bottle of honey from his in-laws for me with the wax honeycomb in the bottom.
            I never used to care much for honey, but tastes change. One day I dipped a spoon in the bottom of that jar and ate what little honey was left. It was delicious! So, a few weeks later, while at a local farm supply store, I greedily grabbed up a couple of quarts of locally grown honey for my new sweet tooth. My original goal was solely about dipping a spoon into my honey for the taste. Along the way, a funny thing happened.
            Like many people, I suffer from allergies, particularly food allergies. My worst time is spring, through the long summer until the dead of winter. It seems like just about everything that is abloom is out to get me. When the flowers proliferate, the problem foods that I could eat sparingly in the winter must be laid aside. It’s a constant tradeoff, as anyone with food allergies can attest. Airborne allergens sensitize the body and serve to heighten allergic reactions.
            Even people who claim to have no allergies can become sensitized during periods of high pollen counts. Witness your friends and co-workers who get a little more snarly during the spring fruit tree bloom or the awful ragweed time. I have known people who were great pollen barometers. I could judge the pollen count by observing their antics. Some would become a third meaner, and others would similarly become a third more goofy…all the time vehemently denying their allergies. At the end of the bloom, they would return to their usual goofiness levels. You have seen this, or been this, or will look for it next time.
            The most commonly used allergy relief, as you know, is chemical. Many flee to the drugstore for pills, and others go whole hog with weekly allergy injections. Both treatments have their place, especially for folks used to having their way RIGHT NOW, but there may be a better…and cheaper way.
            I have always advocated opting for the simplest cures first, before bringing out the heavy guns. Why shoot a man with a bazooka if a short length of lead pipe will suffice?
            If you suspect that you are allergy prone, the cheapest way for confirmation is something called an “elimination diet” wherein you systematically remove suspected foods or substances that may be causing your problem. Then, by and by you add them back into to your life to see what happens.
            I prefer my own modified brand of elimination diet that works more like an “addition diet”. If you suspect that a food is causing problems, load up on it and see what happens. If you become sicker, then eliminate it, wait for your symptoms to subside, and then load up again. After a couple or three episodes, you’ll pretty well know how you stand with your former favorite food.
            So back to the honey… As mentioned earlier, my only purpose for buying the honey in the first place was just to eat the darn stuff. Then, one day, when I rode by that same farm supply store, the owner, on one of those flashing road signs, had a very simple message that went something like, “Honey for sale. Good for allergies.”
            Now, I doubt very seriously if he thought that up on his own. More likely, the honey supplier put a bee in his ear. Well, no matter, the flashing sign put a bee in my ear! I did a quick health inventory right there on the spot and that’s when I made the connection. A half quart of honey later I was feeling better!
            Of course, this was no proof. So, I stopped eating it…got worse…and started eating it and got better. That’s where I am as I peck out this article. I confess that more personal research on my part is needed before I put a nail in it, but it is promising!
            Information on the World Wide Wait is sparse. Except for one lone scientist at some college or the other who claims that fructose has the same incidence of allergy alleviation as honey most of the rest of the claims are anecdotal. (Is there any test-tee out there who can’t tell the difference between Karo syrup and honey?? Give me a break!) However, chances are good that you know someone who swears by bee pollen. It continues to be a good seller, so there must be something to it.
            I’m not alone, however, in postulating that the best help comes from locally grown honey. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that local honey contains the richest source of ingredients for your local allergies. For example, no help may be obtained if you are ingesting honey rich in stinkweed pollen if you have never been exposed to a stinkweed blossoms. All you are likely to get is a honey high and all the other beneficial effects claimed for the tasty elixir.
            The accepted theory of allergy immunization is that when you are given minute amounts of what you are allergic to, you build up your natural defenses. This doesn’t make a dab of sense to most people, but it works, never the less. Local honey contains minute amounts of what makes you sniffle, ache, or suffer pollen induced grouchiness.

Recommended Daily Dosage

             Any time you try a new health regime, particularly if it includes slurping down something you aren’t used to, it’s best to monitor your reaction very closely. Taking the recommended daily dosage of honey will most likely cause one of three results:

Results of Local Honey Bee Honey Ingestion (Means putting it into your mouth):

  1. Nothing.
  2. You’ll get better.
  3. You’ll get worse.

            Obviously, if you are allergic to the honey itself, you’ll do more damage than good, so don’t be pig headed and use it if it makes you sick. Like any substance allergy, it can run from immediately life threatening to mildly irritating. You have to use a little common sense. If you don’t possess common walking around sense, have someone who does look after you.
            If you want to be scientific about it, use my addition diet modification. Go on the daily spoon of honey for two or three weeks and if you think you feel better, discontinue, and see what happens. If you get back into your same old rut, start it up again. Do this as often as it takes to confirm or dismiss your honey theory. And, if you are going to take the plunge, be sure to use only locally grown honey. Honey from elsewhere may or may not work, but why jade the experiment? That’s a whole other experiment.
            At the time of this writing, you can obtain locally grown, fresh, seasonal honey, at  Farm Systems in Oxford, Alabama. No doubt there are other sources. The key is to use honey produced by happy bees who make it from what makes you sick. If you are really feisty, you can locate a wild bee tree and try robbing it yourself. Naturally, though, this may lead to another fairly common allergy problem…bee stings. It’s your choice!
 

If you like Bees, you'll love these articles: .Chiggers., Roaches and Noseeums
 

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