There have been so many articles and blog posts recently trying to either prove or debunk the old adage that local honey can help you with your allergies that I figured I should write down a few of my thoughts.
For some reason, many of the articles talking about local honey not being an effective treatment were published in the tabloids, which I found interesting, as I seem to remember that they were pushing local honey as a useful cure just a few years ago. Not sure what their agenda is, other than sensationalism, but this is about my personal experiences, anyway.
I never suffered from hayfever, but a friend of mine used to have lots of problems every Spring, so I advised him to eat local honey. Unfortunately, it didn’t work for him, but it did work for his wife who also used to suffer from hayfever. What we figured out (using trial and error and muscle testing) was that she was allergic to birch pollen and he was allergic to oak pollen. The honey they ate was local birch honey, which seems to suggest that eating local honey is only effective in curing your pollen allergy if it is made from the allergen your body reacts to. Obviously, this is just anecdotal evidence, but I found an interesting medical study here that suggests that patients with birch pollen allergy had significantly significantly better control of their symptoms than the control group.
So it seems that you need to eat local honey made from the pollen you’re allergic to in order to get useful results. I wonder if this also works with maple syrup or maybe nettle tea if you’re allergic to either of these substances.