David Owiredu, PharmD, Moye’s Pharmacy
Spring not only brings about the blooming of fresh flowers and later evenings full of sunshine. Spring also brings about pollination and the production of local honey. The widespread transfer of pollen ignites sinus issues and allergies for several people, but who knew that the making of honey could help remedy these seasonal symptoms many of us suffer from?
Not much research was initially made on the connection between honey and allergic rhinitis, which is often referred to as AR. But recent research conducted by the National Institute of Health found when subjects with AR who have a family history of seasonal allergies, as well as a medical history of asthma, were given high doses of honey in addition to standard medication, a reduction of symptoms was found. Studies showed when research subjects ingested the honey, once the antihistamine was withdrawn from their medication regime, symptoms of sneezing and nasal itchiness seized. Research also found that with the use of honey, subjects’ symptoms stopped for 0 to 4 weeks at a time. Scientists discovered the usage of honey was just as effective as the medication loratadine (Asha’ari 2013).
In conclusion, when those who suffer from seasonal allergies introduce their immune system directly to the aeroallergens through the honey, the body builds up a tolerance of the allergens, which decreases the overwhelming immune response. It’s fair to say that bees not only initiate the blooming of flowers but also create nature’s medicine so we are able to truly enjoy the fresh air of spring.
Asha’ari, Zamzil Amin, et. al. 2013. “Ingestion of honey improves the symptoms of allergic rhinitis: evidence from a randomized placebo-controlled trial in the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia”: National Institute of Health
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