It’s the time of year where everyone seems to be getting sick. Here in Texas at least, it’s pretty bad right now– I guess it hasn’t helped that the weather’s been jumping from 30 to 65 and back again. In a recent trip to the pharmacy I realized the prevalence of illness right now– the line was extra long!
I am still getting over my own recent cold, the worst of which was a sore throat that lasted a few days. I hate sore throats! Probably the part of being sick I hate most– it’s a constant pain, and makes it hurt to breath, swallow, and eat.
The first night of my sore throat I couldn’t sleep and had to get up in the middle of the night. I was going to make myself some hot water with lemon; I had made the same thing that morning and it had helped pretty well. But I decided to search online and see if there were other home remedies that might work even better.
I’m all about natural home remedies when I’m sick. I hate taking medicine; I know there are tons of side effects of many medications, and that in general they’re just not real good for you. I will usually sip on green tea and soup, but since I’ve begun looking more into other natural solutions as part of my halal lifestyle (natural soaps, natural foods, etc.), I thought I’d look into natural cold sore throat remedies.
A lot of results came up in my search, and one of the first sites that I saw listed out 14 different natural remedies for a sore throat. As I looked through the list, I began to see a trend: most of them included honey! Which was really interesting to me, since I have learned that the Quran mentions honey as having healing properties:
“And your Lord inspired the (female) bee: ‘Take for yourself dwelling-place in the mountains, and in the trees, and in what they (human beings) may build and weave. Then eat of all the fruits, and returning with your loads follow the ways your Lord has made easy for you.’ There comes forth from their bellies a fluid of varying color, wherein is health for human beings. Surely in this there is a sign for people who reflect.” Quran 16:69
I have heard about some of the uses of honey in the past. For instance, I’ve heard from a nurse that if you eat local honey it will help your allergies. The local part is important because local honey will have used local plants and flowers to be made, so then I guess there are certain immunities passed on in the honey. I think I’ll be trying that this allergy season and see how it works.
I also have heard that honey is especially useful in treating certain wounds. I used to work in hospice, and one time heard some nurses laughing about a patient who wanted to use honey to treat their wound (it had apparently been recommended by a previous doctor at some point). But then another nurse stopped them, commenting that she had worked with honey before and that it actually works amazingly well.
I did a little research on my own about why honey might help when you have a cold or sore throat. Besides the obvious effect of coating your scratchy throat, it turns out that honey has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. So I gave it a try– I mixed 1 tbsp of honey and 1 tbsp of lemon juice in a cup of hot water. First of all, let me say this tasted awesome! So yummy, and so soothing on my throat . . . plus it worked miraculously! By the time I was done drinking it, my throat felt so much better– I didn’t feel any pain, only a little swelling still. And then I slept like a baby 🙂
So, my conclusion: I’m going to be using honey a lot more in the future. From looking at sources online, it looks like raw honey works the best. Oh, and please note– don’t feed honey to infants under 1 year old. I think all honey bottles contain this warning; honey might contain certain bacteria spores than can cause potentially fatal botulism in infants whose digestive tracks are not yet developed enough to protect against this risk.
Here’s a list of some other things honey has been known to help. Of course, I can’t validate any of this, but do your own research and maybe check out the links below for more info, and also check with your doctor if needed:
- Quick energy source
- Supports blood formation
- Treatment of wounds
- Treatment of Allergies
- Fights bacterial infections
Sources to check out for more info: