Honey has been found to be more effective in upper respiratory tract infection, aka the common cold, than antibiotics – we know that most colds are viral which do not respond to antibiotics (they’re made to work on bacteria only). But among the various concoctions to remedy the common cold, honey stacks up better than most – it is particularly effective in reducing the severity and frequency of coughing.
Anti-bacterial properties in honey have also been found against E coli (urinary and gastrointestinal infections), Salmonella (gastro), Staphylococcus (skin), Clostridium (gastro) and Helicobacter (stomach ulcers).
This advice applies for children over 1 year of age and adults (beware of botulism in infants).
In addition, honey has antioxidants, is better than sugar for those with diabetes (and has minimal cholesterol), may help with blood pressure and cholesterol, can support wound healing, and may help with gastro-intestinal symptoms such as reflux and diarrhoea.
Ways to enjoy honey and reap its health benefits include
- Adding honey to sweeten dressings or sauces
- Stirring honey into your morning coffee or tea
- Spreading rawhoney on top of toast, pancakes or crumpets
- Mixing honey into yogurt, cereal, or oats or a shake