Honey has been used for centuries as an oral and topical remedy. In general, honey has antioxidant, antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory effects, but it can be used for many purposes.
Nutritionally speaking, honey is rich in vitamins B6, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and certain amino acids. The minerals found in honey include calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc.
Honey holds very high value in Ayurvedic Medicine. In fact, it is the only sweet that balances kapha and improves immunity! Honey is considered to be:
- an energy food
- an immune boaster
- a carrier of herbs and nutrients into the tissues
- a balancer of cellular activity
- a prime healer
Here are some common Ayurvedic home remedies using honey:
1) For a severe cold, take one tablespoon of lukewarm honey with 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon powder daily for 3 days. This will help clear the sinuses. (Daily use of honey and cinnamon powder also strengthens the immune system and protects the body from bacterial and viral attacks.)
2) For a persistent cough with mucus, mix a pinch of black pepper with a teaspoonful of honey and lick the mixture from a spoon after meals.
3) Mix 2 teaspoons of honey with carrot juice and consume one hour before breakfast. Do this regularly to improve eyesight.
4) Mix 2 teaspoons of honey with an equal quantity of ginger juice. This concoction helps to expectorate mucus, providing relief for the common cold, coughs and sore throat.
5) A regular dose of one teaspoon of garlic juice mixed with two teaspoons of honey twice a day in the mornings and evenings help strengthen the heart muscle and control blood pressure.
Ismat Nathani, Doctorate of Natural Medicine
Ayurvedic Health Consultant
Founder & Director, Centre for Ayurveda & Indian Systems of Healing
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