A number of natural remedies are considered good for colds and flu. Manuka honey appears to be one of them.
One study found that a component in this super food can stimulate the immune response. So, when you’re sick, manuka might be an alternative to taking an over-the-counter cold formula, which can have potentially serious side effects.
Manuka honey is harvested from bees that visit the flowering manuka tree, which grows in New Zealand. This honey has nutrients, enzymes and other medicinal properties that far exceed those found in regular honey.
Because the island nation of New Zealand is less polluted than many other parts of the world, manuka honey is very pure.
Many alternative health experts recommend manuka for general infection fighting. It may be put on a closed wound to help with healing. (In fact, it’s now used for this purpose in some hospitals, in wound dressings, for patients with bacteria-resistant skin infections. It’s also an excellent diarrhea remedy, since it both kills germs and aids the digestive process. Or, it may be ingested when you’re fighting a cold or the flu.
Potential Health Benefits of Raw Manuka Honey
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Traditional healers have known about the potential benefits of raw manuka honey for centuries. In recent years, this remedy has become very well known around the world. There are now a large number of companies selling this type of honey. But not all of them sell what’s considered “active” manuka. This means that it has a certain measurable level of medicinal anti-bacterial components
Manuka Honey Natural Cold Flu Remedy
Please understand that I’m not a doctor, so I can’t give medical advice. I also can’t promise that any natural remedy, including manuka, can keep you healthy. All I can do is share what others are saying about this special honey. I’m very happy to share this information, because I’m passionate about natural healthcare.
Not all manuka is created equal. The amount of medicinal activity can very greatly from batch to batch. Although scientists don’t know exactly what compounds give manuka its special healing properties, they are able to test for ability to kill bacteria, which is a measure of its activity.
Although colds and flu are caused by viral infections, manuka can possibly help the body fight these pathogens by boosting the immune response. It also may exert a protective effect against secondary bacterial infections that often arise in the wake of a cold.
Where to Buy Raw Manuka Honey
So, if you’re buying manuka for its germ-killing potential, you’ll want to find a highly active brand. Opinions vary on the required potency needed to bring about better health. According to the manuka authority website, HoneyCentre Warkworth, the activity rating should be 10+ or more.
The Happy Valley manuka honey shown here has a UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) rating of 15+, which far exceeds the levels required for it to be considered active. This honey was harvested from remote locations in New Zealand, where the manuka trees grow. This brands is tested to ensure that its potency meets the UMF standards for manuka, set by the government of New Zealand.
If you’re going to buy manuka honey, you definitely want a brand that’s been tested to make sure it contains adequate amounts of the healing compounds. According to HoneyCentre Warkworth, you may also receive benefits from less potent strains, but they may not be the therapeutic dose you’re looking for.
Health Benefits of Raw Manuka Honey
The manuka tree, scientifically known as Leptospermum scoparium, a species of tea tree. Many people are very familiar with the Australian tea tree, or Melaleuca alternifolia, because of the essential oil distilled from its leaves. Both species are known to contain strong antimicrobial compounds.
Manuka honey is an excellent item to have in your natural medicine cabinet, as reports of drug-resistant bacteria continue to make the news. Unless you have a bee allergy (in this case check with your health provider before taking manuka), this natural remedy is far safer than taking an over-the-counter cold formula. These preparations typically contain acetaminophen, which can cause liver damage. Acetaminophen is the leading cause of sudden liver failure in the United States.
Also, OTC cold formulas do not shorten the length of your illness. Nor do they prod your immune system into mounting a healthy response to fight the infection.
Manuka Honey For Colds
In our house, we only use natural solutions when we have a cold. We’ve found they work so well that we’d never even consider using OTC drugs, because of their inherent risks.
One of the remedies we own is the cough drops you see below. They are made with manuka honey, ginger and echinacea. These organic cough drops are so good that sometimes I’ll have one even when I don’t have a cold.
These statements have not been approved by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. People with health concerns should discuss them with a doctor. Do not give honey to infants.
I’m not a healthcare professional, so all of the above statements are my personal opinion, and are not intended as medical advice.
For Additional Reading
Essential Oils for Children’s Colds
Natural Flu Prevention Remedies