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
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
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
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
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
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
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
- You’ll get better.
- 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!