This is something that works really well when my son is sick: Raw Honey For Coughs And Colds. A teaspoon before bedtime does the trick. I can see how he sleeps better and coughs less. Read on to learn about one of the tastiest home remedies for coughs & colds!
Raw Honey For Coughs And Colds
Just a couple of quick notes. This is not meant to be taken as medical advice. Remember to always talk to your doctor about taking any medications or natural remedies. Also, children under 1 should not eat honey. Got it? Good. Let’s check out the benefits of raw honey for cold symptoms.
I am a huge believer in natural remedies. In my experience, they really work and also help the body fight the illness. Please read My Story to learn more about why I believe in them so much.
When it comes to natural remedies for coughs and colds, there are some really strange tips out there! Wear dirty socks to bed. Eat lizard soup. Slather tallow (a nicer word for sheep or cow fat) all over your body. Yet there’s one remedy that’s not only backed by science, but is actually tasty, too! Raw honey!
Health benefits of raw honey
Did you know studies have determined that children who get a dose of raw honey cough less and sleep better than those who get cough and cold medicines?
That’s great news, since cough and cold medicines are NOT RECOMMENDED for children under 6 years old. Not only are they totally ineffective but they’re also potentially dangerous.
That’s not all, though! Raw Honey also boosts the immune system and helps the body fight the colds faster. Ready to give it a try? Let’s talk dosage, then we’ll get into some tips on choosing the right honey.
How much honey should I use?
While there really isn’t an exact dosage guideline for using honey for coughs and colds, the studies were based on two teaspoons given at bedtime, so that’s a good start. Remember, although it’s more natural and better for you, honey is still mostly sugar. Granted, it contains a far more complex mix of sugars than the common white stuff, but it’s sugary, nonetheless. So, don’t overdo it.
By the way, although we’ve talked mostly about the benefits of honey for helping soothe your child’s coughing and cold symptoms, it’s also just as good for you! The big question now is which type of honey to get.
Raw versus filtered: which type of honey is better?
According to the National Honey Board, there’s really no nutritional difference between raw and filtered real honey (more on real versus “fake” below). Raw honey does have more pollen in it (which is good for helping you deal with allergies), but beyond that, they say that the nutritional composition is essentially the same.
So why am I recommending raw honey? Well, first, most of the studies about the benefits of honey used the raw version. Second, the research cited by the Honey Board was done by them, not an independent source, so there’s a bit of experimental bias. Plus, when it’s safe to do so, you should always choose raw (aka “as nature intended”) over processed! I really believe raw is better and the infographic below tells you a bit more about the difference between raw and filtered honey.
Bottom line: Buying raw honey is for sure better. The benefits are amazing, and all the nutrients are intact. Raw honey is full of vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants and anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. There are so many science-backed health benefits if you choose real raw honey. Plus, it tastes a million times better! Once you try raw, you’ll never want to go back to the over-filtered stuff. Now, let’s talk about how to find the good stuff! If you just want a few recommendations right now, check out some of my favorite products below.
Is 75% of honey sold in stores really fake?
Here’s where things start to get a little confusing. A few years ago, a report on Food Safety News came out stating that 75% of honey sold in stores isn’t “real honey. ” There were a lot of misunderstandings with that report, and a few days later NPR told everyone to relax and presented their argument for why it really is all real honey. So, which side is right? Both, really, but the Food Safety News argument made a lot more sense.
Basically, the report said that most store honey contains no pollen, and without pollen, there’s really no way to determine the source to find out if it’s safe. Lack of pollen also means that the honey has been filtered to the point that it no longer resembles what the bees made. They even ran independent tests on honey at major retailers to look at the pollen count. Here’s what they found:
- 100 percent of the honey sampled from drugstores like Walgreens, Rite-Aid and CVS Pharmacy had no pollen.
- 77 percent of the honey sampled from big box stores like Costco, Sam’s Club, Walmart, Target and H-E-B had the pollen filtered out.
- 100 percent of the honey packaged in the small individual service portions from Smucker, McDonald’s and KFC had the pollen removed.
- Samples Food Safety News bought at farmers markets, co-ops and “natural” stores like PCC and Trader Joe’s had the full, anticipated, amount of pollen.
The article went on to mention that in the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration says that any product that’s been ultra-filtered and no longer contains pollen isn’t honey. While that’s not entirely as cut and dry as it sounds, the FDA does have rules regarding the labeling of adulterated honey. Adulteration happens when important parts of the food are removed, or other things are added to bulk it up. So, you could easily argue that removing the pollen “adulterates” the honey, in which case it’s absolutely true that 75% of honey sold in stores is NOT real.
Then how do you know if you’re actually getting “real” raw honey?
So, how do you know whether you’re actually getting raw honey versus filtered? Unfortunately, since the USDA and FDA doesn’t have an official definition for raw honey, you can’t rely entirely on the label. The Honey Board came up with their own definition, calling it “honey as it exists in the beehive or as obtained by extraction, settling or straining without adding heat.” However, as they explain, this definition carries no legal weight.
MyBeeLine has a fantastic guide to determining whether honey is raw or filtered. While you can’t always tell just by looking at it, raw honey is typically thicker and may have crystals and other impurities in it. In this case, those impurities are a good thing! Clear honey almost always means it’s been filtered. If it looks like the picture below, there’s a pretty good chance it’s been filtered.
Raw honey also moves a lot slower when you turn the bottle upside down. In fact, most of the time you’re better off just using a spoon to get it out of the jar! Honey sold at farmer’s markets and other similar markets is more likely to be raw than the stuff sold in stores, although you’ll want to ask to be sure. If you would like to buy raw pure honey online, I recommend Tupelo honey from Florida. I buy it for my family and love the taste.
It is always good to stay informed to make the best decisions for you and your family. If you are interested in more natural remedies, please see 6 Natural Ways To Protect Your Family From The Flu and Detox Baths.
This information should not replace professional advice by a qualified medical or herbal practitioner.
Last update on 2019-11-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API