Seasonal Allergies Begone with Raw, Local Honey & Acupuncture

Raw Local Honey
Could allergy relief be found in a daily teaspoon of raw local honey? As bees pick up pollen from one flower to the next, that pollen is then transferred to their honey. Eating a small amount of that honey can help strengthen the immune system to elicit a lesser response to that seasonal allergen over time.

But does it work?

Research suggests yes. One study examined 44 patients with a physician-diagnosed birch pollen allergy who consumed either regular honey or honey with birch pollen added in incremental amounts over the span of five months. Those who consumed the honey with the added birch pollen showed a 60% reduction in symptoms, 2x as many days without symptoms, 70% fewer days with severe symptoms, and they used 50% less antihistamines. So, the gradual introduction of an allergen can give you significant control over your symptoms during allergy season. A gradual introduction is key. Honey itself can trigger a severe allergic reaction, so do not use honey if you’ve experienced an adverse reaction in the past. And use sparingly until you know you can tolerate it. Another reason to use honey sparingly is because approximately 70-80% of honey is fructose. Fructose is naturally occurring in fruit and honey and is the sweetest of all sugars. Too much of this sweet stuff can drive high blood sugar and exacerbate the pre-diabetes condition, metabolic syndrome.

Tip from our Nutrition Therapist: One teaspoon of honey has approximately 4 grams of fructose. Limit your total consumption of fructose to 25 grams per day, which includes fruits.

And why raw, local honey?

The honey should be raw so it contains the living enzymes necessary to protect your body from an over-active histamine response. It should be local so that it contains the same types of plants, from the same area, that you are reacting to. Also make sure that it’s seasonally appropriate. If you have Spring allergies, choose a raw, local honey harvested in the Spring. And the same goes for Fall allergens. Remember that raw, local honey only works on pollen allergies. 

For a local option in Castle Rock, check out the raw, unfiltered honey at Busy Bee Farm. [http://busybeefarm.us/collections/raw-unfiltered-honey]

Acupuncture
Acupuncture can be used for a variety of purposes – stress reduction, digestive function, pain relief, improved sleep, emotional well-being, and relief from allergies.

How does it work?

Acupuncture improves the function of all systems and organs and promotes the body’s ability to self-heal by stimulating specific sites – acupuncture points. The benefits of acupuncture can be further enhanced by heat, pressure, electrical stimulation and cupping. 

The premise of acupuncture is that the balance of opposing forces, yin and yang, bring health to the entire body. Energy, or qi, flows through specific pathways of the body called meridians. This flow of energy is what keeps yin and yang in balance. If the flow of qi gets blocked, like water behind a dam, it can cause pain, dysfunction, or illness. Acupuncture can release blocked qi in the body, stimulate systems and organs to function better, and induce the innate response of the body to heal.

This premise of healing has been tested on those who suffer from seasonal allergies. A study of 422 people with pollen allergies found that after two months of treatment, 71% reported improvement in their symptoms and less use of antihistamines than those in the study that did not receive acupuncture. So, acupuncture is an effective treatment for seasonal allergy relief. 

Other herbs and nutrients you might find beneficial for seasonal allergy relief include:
Nettle (Urtica dioica)
Wild Yam (Dioscorea villosa)
Dandelion Root (Taraxacum officinale)
Eleuthera (Eleutherococcus senticosus)
Quercetin
Vitamin C

If you find your seasonal allergies are not improving, we can help you get to the underlying cause of the issue to restore balance from within.

Explore all of the ways acupuncture and natural medicine can benefit your health by contacting Colorado Natural Medicine at 303.688.6698 or visit us on the web at coloradonaturalmed.com.

Sources:
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/05/27/can-eating-local-honey-cure-allergies.aspx
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21196761
http://www.diynatural.com/local-honey-for-allergies/
http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA401459/Acupuncture-for-Allergies.html
http://cim.ucsd.edu/clinical-care/acupuncture.shtml

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