Local Honey Might Help Your Allergies—If You Believe It Will

You may have heard that eating local honey can help curb your seasonal allergies, and now science has investigated.

They did two studies, one where the participants knew if they were getting the real treatment or a placebo, and another where the participants did not know what they were getting. In the study where participants were aware of whether they were eating local honey daily or not, those who got the honey reported statistically significantly lowered allergy symptoms. In the other study, those who ate honey did no better with their allergies compared to those who instead ate corn syrup.

The scientists say it’s possible participants simply weren’t eating enough honey, as the oral consumption of allergens has historically been shown to be an effective way to train the immune system not to overreact. But this isn’t great, as not many people would be able to tolerate eating multiple tablespoons of honey each day. The first experiment shows that the placebo effect may be at play if you feel consuming honey is helping your allergies. If you feel that eating honey actually helps your allergies then go for it, because all that matters in the end is that you feel better.