Honey: A Natural Allergy Remedy
Do you suffer from seasonal allergies? Like you, many people suffer the miserable side effects of allergies every day. For fear of sneezing, itchy eyes, and a runny nose, you might even avoid fun outdoor activities that you would otherwise enjoy.
What’s the answer? Some choose to live “naturally” and avoid activities that will spark an allergic reaction. Others bite the bullet and simply try to ignore the annoying allergies – with the attitude that they will not stop living just because they have allergies. Then there are those who give in to the “convenience” of popping antihistamines every day. What could be the harm? They are FDA approved and thousands of individuals take them daily. Right?
Antihistamines work by blocking the effects of your body’s naturally occurring histamine. Histamine is stored in the body in areas that are prone to infection or injury, so they may be quickly released when needed. When something foreign enters the body, it releases histamine to protect you.
Histamine is like your mom: she cares about you and she wants to protect you. But sometimes she is overprotective even when it’s unnecessary. Such is the case with seasonal allergies. The immune system is complex, but in simple terms, in certain people different pollens trigger the immune system (and histamine), which leads to a “fight” response in your body. Your immune system sends out all sorts of cells meant to fight off the foreign intruder (pollen), and this weakens you and causes the allergies.
Taking antihistamines stops the cells from reacting to foreign intruders, but your body doesn’t know how to differentiate between “false alarms” like pollen and real intruders, like infection. Prolonged use of antihistamines is bad because they may cause your body to be unable to fight simple infections, since you shut out the histamine.
Lucky for you, there are natural ways to cope with allergy symptoms without hurting your body’s histamine. One of the best places to start is to see a naturopathic doctor. Together with a naturopath, you can determine the source of your allergy symptoms and assess the possible natural solutions. Sometimes it’s just a matter of adjusting the foods you eat (maybe you were having reactions due to an imbalance in your body), or perhaps the naturopath will prescribe natural herbs or acupuncture.
A no-risk natural allergy remedy you can try out for yourself at home is easy and sweet as can be: honey. It’s so simple, many don’t believe it to be true. Though there are few scientific tests to prove the effectiveness, but many claim that it immensely helped them fight seasonal allergies.
The idea is to eat a teaspoon of local, non-pasteurized, organic honey every day. The honey should be produced that same year. Similar to being vaccinated, eating local honey means ingesting small doses of the local flower pollen. By ingesting these pollens on a regular basis, your body will become accustomed to them and when you are exposed to those same pollens in the air your body’s histamine will not react to them as foreign bodies.
If you decide to attempt this natural remedy, be cautious at first. Some people have experienced allergic reactions to the honey.
Unfortunately, not all grocery stores will carry local honey. Your best bet for finding the right honey needed is probably a local farmer’s market.
Do you know of any natural remedies to fight seasonal allergies? Do you have tips or tricks to share? What has worked for you? Please share with us by posting in the comments below.