One of the world’s oldest cold remedies is still among the best, and it has a number of other health benefits, too, in addition to tasting just great.
Some 5,000 years ago, mothers were giving their coughing children the same mixture of honey and lemon that many use to treat cold symptoms today.
Why has the honey-lemon remedy endured so well? Because, frankly, it works better than any commercially available pharmaceutical cough syrup on the market.
Start with juice from a lemon, an acidic citrus fruit that contains high levels of phosphorus and calcium and actually works as an antacid. Among its healing properties are improved digestion, detoxification, fighting infection, lowering cholesterol and regulating blood pressure.
Add some honey, a powerful immune system booster that features antioxidants and anti-bacterial properties. It is a natural energy source, with glucose that is readily absorbed by the body for an immediate energy boost, plus fructose that metabolizes more slowly for sustained energy and keeping blood sugar levels fairly constant.
Dissolved together in heated water and consumed warm, the honey-lemon combo becomes a dynamic duo, coating the throat with soothing relief and killing certain bacteria that cause infection.
Many users of the remedy like to mix a bit of root ginger into the solution. Others add salt, cinnamon or clove. But it is the honey and lemon together that provides the basic cough-abating effects … and more.
Recent reports indicate that drinking honey-lemon mixtures can serve as an aid to weight loss. Honey has an astringent quality that helps dissolve fat. Lemon cleanses the liver, promoting detoxification and elimination. Shedding pounds is simply a welcome side effect.
Other benefits of honey-lemon drinks may include asthma relief, treatment of rheumatism and arthritis, fever reduction, blood purification, alleviation of dizziness or nausea, and reduction of mental stress and depression.
There is also a strong psychological factor at play in the efficacy of honey-lemon. Those who receive it to cure colds when young tend to associate the taste for the rest of their lives with getting well.
There may even be a primordial association to healing … thousands of years of mothers caring for coughing children, embedded in our DNA.
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