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Well and Good: The Benefits of Local Honey

A few weeks ago, I wrote here about all the great benefits that honey offers. But I didn’t really go into one of the greatest things about it: Local honey may help with allergies!

The idea is that honey produced locally is made by bees supping on the same kinds of blooms and pollen that give allergy-sufferers fits. By ingesting tiny amounts of these allergens via the honey, you give your immune system the ability to adjust, and decrease the chance that your body will produce an allergic reaction. (It’s a process similar to immunotherapy, in which you gradually, slowly vaccinate the body against allergens.) Some allergy sufferers swear that just a spoonful of local honey a day really relieves their itchy eyes, sneezing attacks and other allergy symptoms.

Ideally, for the best benefits, you’d eat honey produced in your backyard. Since that isn’t practical for most of us, it’s recommended that for allergy relief, you try honey produced from a nearby area, preferably one that has a similar landscape, with similar trees and flowers. It’s also ideal to consume raw honey, which has not been heated or filtered to preserve it better. Raw honey may crystallize quicker in your pantry, but it has more of the pollens, trace minerals, enzymes and other good stuff that makes honey such a good natural food.

We carry a few varieties of Texas honey that you may want to try:

North Dallas Honey Company:  The beekeepers here produce raw, unfiltered honey. The honey is strained to remove odds and ends like bits of wax and bee wings, and gently warmed, but is not pasteurized. That means it preserves more of the good enzymes and allergens that may help you with your allergy attacks.

Round Rock Honey: Wildflower honey produced in the northern Austin suburb of Round Rock, this dark, raw honey is strained through a steel sieve but is never heated or filtered, so the pollens are not altered.

Pure Texas: This unfiltered honey is produced by English Honey Farms, in El Campo, about an hour south of Houston.