First some info about honey.
Raw Honey is honey that has not been heated above 100 degrees Fahrenheit, which keeps it’s many therapeutic virtues and delicate fragrance intact. Honey contains the essence of flowers: The honey bee (apis mellifera) creates honey from foraging nectar from a wide range of flowers, and deposits it into the honeycomb. The bees collect nectar from around 5 million flowers to produce just one pint of honey.
Raw honey has an indefinite shelf life, even a 2,000 year old jar excavated from Egyptian tombs was reported to taste delicious. Honey has been used by people of many cultures for millions of years, and humans have developed a very special relationship with honey bees over these millenia. Honey has been a long-understood medicinal and therapeutic gift, and it’s medicinal qualities have been mentioned in all major religious texts of humanity.
Raw honey is therapeutic and healing both internally and externally. Since honey contains pollen grains from a wide array of local plants, daily consumption of locally harvested honey provides a homeopathic dose of potential allergens, which can assist in decreasing immune response and lessening the symptoms of pollen-based allergies.
Honey is easier to digest than regular sugar, and does not stimulate insulin secretion to the degree that regular sugar does. Honey is a complex and unique blend of many different sugars, aromas, enzymes, vitamins, proteins, minerals, salts, acids, lipids, pigment and flavor compounds.
Oral ingestion of honey can help with insomnia and sleeplessness, laryngitis, indigestion, and constipation. It is anti-viral as well as anti-fungal. Externally, honey has been known to help in healing burns, wounds, athlete’s foot, and eczema.
Herbal Medicine: Herb Infused Honey
If you enjoy herbs and honey, infusing your honey with herbs will give you the best of both worlds. Honey and herbs are both well known for their natural medicinal value. Honey is anti-bacterial, prevents infection and inflammation, and soothes a sore throat. Herbs have individual medicinal benefits. Herbal honey can be used to treat common ailments or simply for the pleasure of its wonderful flavor. It is best to use raw honey in your herbal infusion because raw honey is richer in enzymes, as the heat from pasteurization destroys them, as well as some of the active antibacterial ingredients.
Commonly used Herbs for Infusing Honey and Their Medicinal Value:
* Cayenne Pepper: Aches & Pains, Arthritis, Cough, Digestion/Indigestion, Fibromyalgia, Gout, Headache, Heart Tonic, IBS, Lupus
* Chamomile: Anxiety, Burns, Candida, Depression, Digestion, Eczema, Female Tonic, Gingivitis, IBS, Insomnia, Stress, Toothache
* Cinnamon: Candida, Colds, Diabetes, Digestion, Fungus Infections, IBS, Flu. Nausea
* Dandelion: Alcoholism, Bladder Infection, Memory/Focus, Bronchitis, Cholesterol Control, Colds, Digestion, Female Tonics, IBS, Liver, Respiratory, Osteoporosis, PMS
* Fennel: Arthritis, Congestion, Cough, Digestion, Gout, Lupus, Menopause, Weight Loss
* Garlic: Allergies, Asthma, Bronchitis, Burns, Cancer, Candida, Cholesterol, Colds, Fungus, Heart Tonics, Herpes, Flu, Respiratory, Sinusitis, Sore Throat
* Ginger: Arthritis, Cholesterol, Colds, Digestion, Fibromyalgia, Gout, Heart Tonic, IBS, Lupus, Nausea
* Lavender: Anxiety, Arthritis, Burns, Candida, Colds, Depression, Fibromyalgia, Gout, Headache, Hypertension, IBS, Insomnia, Lupus, Nausea
* Lemon Balm: Colds, Depression, Heart Tonics, Herpes, Nausea, Sore Throat and Laryngitis
* Peppermint: Allergies, Anxiety, Bronchitis, Chronic Fatigue, Colds, Congestion, Cough, Headache, Heart Tonics, IBS, Flu, Respiratory, Nausea, Sinus
* Rosemary: Anxiety, Arthritis, Asthma, Memory, Bronchitis, Cholesterol, Chronic Fatigue, Colds, Gout, Heart Tonics, IBS, Respiratory, Lupus
* Sage: Memory, Menopause
* Thyme: Congestion, Cough, Respiratory, Toothache
* Honey: Infused with Garlic makes an excellent sore throat remedy!
* Osha: has been found to possess a very high anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties and is very effective for treating cold and flu systems of the upper respiratory tract, and other viral infections of the respiratory system.
FYI. Propolis is a sticky, resinous substance the worker bees collect from trees and various other resinous, sap-bearing plants. Honeybees use propolis to both seal and sterilize the hive.
The bees also use propolis as their medicine: it works to help keep viral, bacterial, and fungal infections from spreading inside the hive. It is strongly anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory, and contains many anti-oxidants.
In many countries where antibiotics are not available, propolis is widely used to heal a variety of wounds. A few drops of propolis tincture taken during cold and flu season can boost the immune system.