The Healing Powers of Honey for Autumn
By Cal Orey
Cures From Your Kitchen
I'll describe 50 common health ailmentsfrom A to Z, and provide amazing at-home honey cures. I include tried-and-truefolk remedies, real-life stories, scientific studies, and medical experts'words of honey wisdom--and my own experiences with honey. But caution, consult your health care practitioner before putting to work any honey cure.
1 ACNE (Brush off blemishes) Red dots on your face, back, and shouldersare the scourge of the young and beautiful. But adults aren't immune from adultacne or flare-ups. As a teen, I blamed my mom and dad on a blotchy face. (Genesand hormones can play a role in acne.) I turned to gooey Clearasil cream andsmelly Stridex pads and went to war like a fearless Indian using war paint andgetting ready to go to battle. But my efforts didn't work.
I ended up goingto a dermatologist and using a potent topical medicine. After applying morethan less (I don't follow instructions) I ended up tying a navy blue bandanaacross my forehead to hide the unsightly blotch--and was grateful for the hippiefashion trend. If I had known that there was a gentler cure to clear up myface--I would have used it in a heartbeat.
What Honey Rx to Use: Put a dab of honey (a darker variety such asmanuka) on blemishes. Repeat twice per day. Sip a cup of chamomile tea tochill--and drink 6 to 8 ounce glasses of water daily and stay clear of emptynutrition sugary beverages with caffeine.
Why You'll Bee Happy: It'sthe antibacterial compounds in honey that work to help fight redness,inflammation, infection, and dry up the blemish. Manuka honey is antioxidant-rich that canhelp give you a clearer, smoother complexion. "As a teenager," recalls onehoney lover, "I would smear raw, organic honey on my face and did it after Icame home from school, every day." Twomonths later, he recalls seeing sweet results--a 50 percent clearer complexion.The credit goes to using the right "type" of honey--not processed kinds.
2 ALLERGIES (Stop seasonalmisery) Dealing with annoying acneis no picnic, but sneezing, a runny nose, and coughing can ruin an indoor oroutdoor event, thanks to seasonal pollen. Every year when the yellow pollenarrives like an uninvited visitor at Lake TahoeI hold a tissue in one hand and am on the phone to pharmacist with the other. Iam always on a mission to find the natural remedy to stop my sniffles.
What Honey Rx to Use: Tryeating a tablespoon of locally produced honey. Proponents of honey tell me thatyour immune system will get used to the local pollen in it (it should be withina 50 mile radius from where you live).
Why You'll Bee Happy: By taking the honey cure, you may lose yourallergy symptoms. Or not. It's worth the effort and is less pricey than a visitto the doctor or an allergist. Also, honey is a natural remedy and doesn't comewith unknown side effects linked to allergy medications or pricey shots. One summer day, I looked outside and theTahoe yellow pollen was everywhere--cars, trees, and the ground. I startedputting honey (not just the local alfalfa variety) in my tea, yogurt, andbaking. Two days later, my sniffles were history. If it was coincidence or ahoney cure it doesn't matter. It worked.
If you have mildrespiratory problems, from allergies to asthma, honey may enhance the immune systemto build up a better arsenal against airborne allergens--and help you breatheeasier. Honey enthusiasts like D.C. Jarvis, M.D., believe honeycomb isexcellent for treating certain breathing problems. The honey prescription,according to him, was chewing honeycomb which may line the entire breathingtract. (2)
Also, eating honeyon a daily basis was recommended. "As far as I have been able to learn, Vermont folk medicineuses honeycomb as a desensitizing agent; from the results obtained by its useit appears to be anti-allergic in its action." He gives credit to the honeybees. (3)
Beekeepers tell methat honey may help allergies linked to trees and ragweed--the culprit of hayfever and its irritating symptoms during spring and autumn months and often rightbefore. If mold and food allergens arebothering you--honey is not going to be your allergy cure. As beekeepers arebusy at work selling local honey to allergy sufferers, I am busy including alltypes of honeys in my diet because I want to be covered when both seasons. Andif honey can help me cope with congestion and sneezing--I'm in. While furtherresearch is needed, I'm not going to wait for scientists to go to their labrats for a go-ahead. More honey, please.
3 ANEMIA (Iron up) Allergiescan affect people of all ages, but anemia may be more of a problem for peoplewho are dieting or vegetarians who are not getting sufficient iron. Simply put,anemia is a lack of red blood cells and hemoglobin, the protein in red bloodcells that moves oxygen to cells in your body. The symptoms can include feelingtired and lightheaded.
What Honey Rx to Use: Try incorporating a dark honey, such asbuckwheat, in your daily diet. Pair it with Mediterranean iron-rich foods,including fish, seafood, apricots, and figs.
Why You'll Bee Happy: Ifyou're borderline iron deficient, you need to pump more iron into your body.The Daily Value of iron is 18 milligrams. If you are borderline anemic, you cantake boost your iron intake by increasing iron-rich foods and dark honeyscontaining iron which can help boost the lack of red blood cells in the body.
4 ANXIETY (Beat the jittersmonster) Anemia sometimes comes with warnings of symptoms, but when anxietyhits (often worsened by stress) you know it like when an earthquake strikes.Anxiety can wreak havoc on your nervous system and up your odds of heartproblems, stress eating, and other chronic health problems.
What Honey Rx to Use: Ifyou're under pressure and feeling high anxiety or sense a stressful event is inthe works, make a cup of chamomile tea. Put in one teaspoon of your favoritehoney. Repeat twice a day as needed.
Why You'll Bee Happy:Honey--all varietals--is touted by folk medicine healers for its calming effects.The natural superfood can help soothe your nerves rather than put you in higheranxiety mode. The relief it provides may be due to its multiple vitamin Bcontent--anti-stress vitamins. Pairing itwith calming tea or milk (which is rich in tryptophan, an essential amino acidwhich helps to alleviate feelings of anxiety and stress) can help you tochill. So next time you want to relax,one of the best cures is carbohydrates--and the fastest worker to giving you achill pill is nature's sweet honey.
5 BAD BREATH (Freshen up yourmouth) Feeling anxious about if you breath is not as sweet as it should be?Bad breath can be linked to a variety of causes, from a bad tooth, gingivitis,eating onions to sinusitis.
What Honey Rx to Use: Try 1teaspoon of honey in a cup of herbal tea. Repeat as needed.
Why You'll Bee Happy: If youare suffering from post nasal drip, drinking hot tea with honey (which hasantibacterial properties) can help clear up mucous and that'll help sweetenyour mouth. Drinking a cup of honey and chamomile tea will also soothe inflamedgum tissue because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Onions, like anypungent food, will take a while to fade out but a honey and tea remedy mayoffer a quick fix. And if you have a tooth that needs attention, seek it and save that sweet tooth.