Allergies in Hawaii

Allergy season is in full bloom and the lovely islands of Hawaii are not exempt from these heinous conditions for allergy sufferers. There’s nothing quite like the misery of suffering through a gorgeous day in Hawaii because you’re sniffling and sneezing. No one wants to have to put “Kleenex” on their list of things to bring to beach day or on a tropical hike, yet despite being a somewhat small state, Hawaii has the second-highest asthma rate in the nation, and hay fever is also quite common among Hawaii residents. This is because, really, there is no allergy season in Hawaii. Flowers bloom year round, the humidity stays fairly consistent, and mold spores tend to thrive.

Mold allergies are particularly bad, and can contribute to severe hay fever symptoms. The fungi spores thrive in Hawaii’s moist, humid climate. And while Hawaii’s extensive list of different plant and flower species give the island its breathtaking magic, the non-stop blooming and pollen floating around can get particularly miserable for allergy sufferers.

So how does our sniffly, sneezy population catch a break in Hawaii? Well, in a way they can get vaccinated by taking part in a natural and tasty treat. Using local honey acts as a kind of natural vaccine, because the pollen from the local plants and an enzyme naturally occurring in raw honey fights infection and builds the immune system. Eating just a tablespoon or two per day of the stuff, according to theory, could gradually expose the body of the allergy sufferer to the pollen they’re allergic to, and help them to overcome it, just like a vaccine.

While there is no strong scientific proof that honey is a cure to all allergies, many people swear by it, including Malcolm Yorkston of Hawaiian Rainbow Bees. Malcolm’s allergies were so bad at one point that he could no longer read out loud to his daughters because he was so congested. He spent hundreds of dollars on prescription allergy medication after standard over-the-counter drugs proved useless, but also found no luck with his expensive medications. His allergies seemed to be a problem that couldn’t be fixed even after extensive doctors’ visits. However, Malcolm found his saving grace the natural way. Having heard of the health benefits and allergy-relieving traits of consuming raw, local honey, Malcolm decided to give it a shot and set up a few hives. Consuming his local honey worked wonders for Malcolm, and he no longer has the same harsh symptoms he had before the bees. The honey is natural, healthy, and side-effect free, and he encourages other allergy sufferers to give raw honey a try for these same reasons.

It’s very important, if you end up trying honey as a natural alternative to allergy pills, that 1) you get honey that is local to your area, so that you’re getting “vaccinated” for whatever is causing you problems, 2) that the honey is unprocessed, so that you get the full pollen content in the honey, and 3) that you eat a couple tablespoons per day consistently so that your body can build immunities to the allergens.

Allergies in Hawaii are no joke, and can make life miserable on a year-round basis. Instead of giving up and packing your bags, give local, Hawaiian honey a try. It just may be the difference between a puffy eyes and a mound of Kleenex and a clear, happy sinus.