This is how honey can be good for your whole body

You might be used to drizzling it over your breakfast, but did you know the extent of honey’s healing properties?

Scientists have newly developed a way to put tiny amounts of Manuka honey between layers of surgical mesh used during operations, to help protect the body from infection. The research was conducted by scientists at the universities of Ulster and Newcastle, drawing upon ancient wisdom around honey’s bacteria-fighting properties.

Manuka is a more expensive honey produced largely by bees in New Zealand, but pure honey of all varieties has a surprising amount of benefits, and for your entire body too…

It’s the perfect remedy for a sore throat

When you’ve got a sore throat, your first response might be to reach for throat sweets. However, you could do better opting for some honey first. In 2018 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and Public Health England (PHE) said that honey and certain cough medicines can help relieve the uncomfortable symptoms of a sore throat, and only if your cough persists should you seek antibiotics.

Children under the age of one shouldn’t be administered honey, but for everyone else it can be incredibly soothing – particularly if drunk with hot water and lemon.

It’s full of antioxidants

Blueberries and kale are beloved for being full of antioxidants, but did you know honey is too? If you really wanted to boost your antioxidant levels, take the advice of this study and opt for darker honeys.

Antioxidant properties also mean honey can help reduce or prevent damage done to cells by free radicals (often caused by environmental factors like pollution and sunlight). This cell damage can contribute to causing various diseases, including cancer, diabetes and Parkinson’s.

It’s amazing for your skin

Beyond just eating it, the bacteria in raw honey can help reduce inflammation and redness when applied topically to your skin, making it particularly useful for acne-sufferers.

You can make your own honey-based products at home – for instance by mixing honey, yoghurt and cinnamon for a face mask – but there are also plenty of suitable products if you don’t fancy some DIY. Manuka Doctor is a particularly popular brand drawing on the power of honey for skincare, and the Nuxe Rêve de Miel lip balm is another good choice (£10.50, Nuxe).

It’s a good alternative to sweeteners and added sugar

Honey GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY


Honey is still high in sugar, however, it’s a more natural alternative to the white stuff or high-fructose corn syrup. Sugar also has a higher glycaemic index than honey, meaning it raises blood glucose more quickly.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should overload on honey, but if it’s an available option when it comes to sweetening up your porridge, why not consider it first?

It can soothe your stomach

Honey Satisfying GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY


The antibacterial properties of honey which help fight infection have multiple benefits. Studies have shown that honey can help ease diarrhoea, and it’s also said to help improve your gut microbial balance, potentially having prebiotic effects.

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Northern Silver
5th Dec 2019
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I love honey - eat it every day. But I don’t bother with Manuka honey - the genuine article is way too expensive. If you do believe in magical Manuka, bear this in mind: an article from “the Independent” in 2014 says this:
According to New Zealand's leading manuka association, 1,800 tonnes a year of the honey are now consumed in the UK each year, out of an estimated 10,000 tonnes globally. Yet production of the genuine stuff is set at just 1,700 tonnes, or the equivalent to more than three million small jars. Unless Britain has somehow managed to secure all of it, there's a lot of fake manuka on our shelves.

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