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As you learn more about natural remedies and how this translates into your family and everyday life, a few items keep showing up at the forefront, as essentials, some would say. The other day I reviewed 15 uses for coconut oil – a natural mama staple in the home. Well, another staple in the home is manuka honey – For good reason, too.
While there are over 300 varieties of honey known on the earth, Manuka honey should be at the top of your list, and a staple in your home, especially for us natural mamas. This is a honey exclusively produced in New Zealand – which makes it all the more difficult for the rest of us to get (and pricey, too – a small 8oz. jar costs $25 and up, depending on the source – not to mention international shipping) It is produced by the bees which pollinate the flowers available in the Manuka plant, known as Leptospermum scoparium, which is proven to contain therapeutic advantages over other varieties.
Remember that thousands of years ago, food was used as medicine? Hippocrates said it best: Let food be thy medicine. Well, manuka honey was certainly a part of the traditional knowledge.
For us mamas of faith, this rings ever true. Herbs and oils have been used since Creation, as God designed them – there is benefit to be found in much of nature. Honey specifically was referenced in Scripture; the most commonly known verse is likely Proverbs 16:24; Kind words are like honey – Sweet to the soul and healing to the body. Honey symbolized abundance, as Israel was often called the land flowing with milk (needs) and honey (desires); the Promised Land. It is often referenced as a metaphor for delight, especially in the noted verse.
The taste of honey should linger in our mouths and make us long for more, as do the Scriptures when we study God’s Word. I can keep going… But all that to stay… honey is a tradition as well as an everyday remedy.
Following are 17 surprising and everyday uses for Manuka honey:
Simply put, Manuka honey holds antibacterial properties which helps to soothe upset stomach and digestion due to bacteria. Take it with ginger tea or have a dollop on a spoon – it’s delicious!
Manuka honey has many antibiotic attributes that essentially enable it to lessen the bacteria from your skin and body, allowing you to get rid of bad acne. Just apply a drop of honey on the pimple or spot, and leave it for a few minutes.
A great addition to skin care, you can use Manuka honey with skin masks, oils, or alone, prior to bedtime. You can also turn it into a scrub by adding brown sugar, as an exfoliant, which together help to rid of dead skin cells (which is something that naturally happens daily). A honey mask can lead to softer and improved skin texture.
A lip scrub is commonly known to soften flaking and chapped lips – They have been used in beauty for generations. Why not try an edible lip scrub? Just make one with Manuka, olive oil, and sugar. That way, if this gets into your mouth in any way, it’s 100% safe and edible, so no need to worry about ingredients you can’t pronounce!
Start by mixing sweet almond oil and beeswax with a small amount of Manuka honey. Then apply this mixture to your cuticles and fingertips before going to bed. In the morning, you should notice your cuticles be noticeably softer – plus, you would have done so with ingredients you can pronounce, which makes this even better!
Detox teas help to improve your digestion and functions of the stomach, liver, and intestines – thus, helping your body to rid of toxins more efficiently (in addition to abundant water). All you have to do is take a hot cup of herbal tea and add a dollop of Manuka honey, let it melt, and enjoy.
Our bodies are wonderfully designed and can heal themselves, when it comes to minor cuts and scrapes and wounds. But we can help the process along by adding a liquid Manuka, as it has natural anti-inflammatory properties… which speeds up the healing process.
There are many beneficial nutrients in the honey such as zinc, calcium, and phosphorous. Manuka honey is also antimicrobial and antibacterial. The combination of all of this means that is helps to support gum health and plaque health when taken as a dollop or liquid/tea.
Bad Breath Fixer
Many of us know that bad breath comes from a high amount of bacteria in the mouth. To combat this, simply mix some warm water with a pinch of cinnamon, and a dollop of Manuka honey; Gargle together after brushing your teeth. You can really feel, as well as taste, the difference, and will remain fresh longer.
Ever thought of adding honey to your hair routine? Mix Manuka honey with your shampoo, or even use in place of. It helps to lessen environment dirt and toxins while softening your hair, making it easier to manage. You can also make it into a conditioner, by applying equal parts Manuka honey and olive oil to your damp hair. Leave it in for 30 minutes, then rinse and apply shampoo. (Because of this, keep in mind the order and time for hair care!)
Try something that truly works for dandruff; simply mix a small amount of the honey with liquid Castille soap, and wash into your hair. Manuka honey is antimicrobial, which helps to prevent the fungus, which is what causes dandruff. The honey also is soothing to avert the itchiness that comes with dandruff.
Manuka honey has traditionally been used in ancient massage practices for a long time. It is known to have anti-inflammatory properties, which help your muscles and skin tissue to relax; giving way to a more productive and beneficial massage. Simply add a drop of the golden liquid with a drop of your favorite lavender essential oil and carrier oil (I recommend this one), then apply/massage.
It is said taking a dollop of Manuka honey before bedtime promotes restful sleep. This is because is helps to balance blood sugar, helps your brain to release melatonin, and more; which all promote regular bodily functions and a good night’s sleep. Melatonin is very well known for sleep!
Take a cup of hot water or herbal tea, and mix a bit of Manuka honey into it. It’s that simple. With its natural antibiotic attributes, Manuka honey helps your throat to heal, and tastes good while doing so.
Manuka honey helps to improve the body’s immune system by its antibacterial properties – There are actually studies being done which claim it halts the growth of certain bacteria which can cause infection. It’s definitely worth a shot of it, given all of its other incredible benefits listed here – not to mention, it’s delicious!
Manuka honey contains numerous vitamins and minerals, which are indispensable for optimal health and bodily function. Why not get much of them from the same source and use Manuka honey as your all-in-one supplement? Some of these include copper, calcium, iron, sodium, zinc, and B-vitamins.
Manuka honey is a natural sugar energy; It can replace your midday sugary snacks of chocolate, candy, or coffee, to boost your energy. It also has many nutrients, which makes it a much better option all around than a favorite chocolate bar or cup of coffee. (Or rather, add a dollop into your coffee- it makes a lovely creamer, along with a few key ingredients, such as almond milk and vanilla).
Can you think of any other wonderful uses for manuka honey? What have you used it for? Let us know in the comments!
~Katherine Newsom writes at Simple Natural Mama
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