Monday, November 17, 2014

FARMACY: MANUKA HONEY




As I have been recently tending to more friends who have been suffering from a seasonal bug or even allergies, I have come to realise even more how much I treasure raw honey. I use this grounding ingredient daily, especially in the current colder months, to nourish my cells with its warming qualities. 

My regular go-to raw honey is Golden angels Apiary's Wild Rose, which is locally-sourced in Virginia from bees that pollinate wild rose bushes. I prefer local raw honey as it builds the immune system up to fight local allergens. 

In times of seasonal colds or if I feel a little under the weather, however, I reach for Manuka honey. This unique honey is produced on New Zealand's Coromandel Coast by bees that pollinate the native Manuka bush that lends it magical medicinal qualities. It is a potent antibacterial, anti-viral, + anti-fungal tonic that have been proven to be effective remedy against dis-eases ranging from viral infections to damaged skin [I often smear a little dab on a fresh cut rather than chemical-laden Neosporin and let the healing begin]. To take it internally, I mix it with healing herbs such as turmeric or tulsi with some lemon in warm water to sip throughout the day. This is immensely healing to the respiratory tract as it coats and soothes any irritated tissue.

When purchasing Manuka honey, it is critical to pay attention to the Unique Manuka Factor [UMF]. This is a regulated + trademarked number that is indicative of the healing properties of the particular Manuka honey. The UMF ranges from 10+ to 25+, with a higher number signifying increased potency [and of course, price]. You can find it online or at a local, health food store such as Whole Foods or MOM's Organic Market.

A little tip for making a tea or tonic with this honey is to be extra attentive to the water's temperature. As Manuka is a raw + live product, its healing properties can be overheated and consequently diminished. Mix it as I do with herbs + lemon or make it an earthy drink by mixing it into some dandelion root tea with almond or full-fat coconut mylk.


photos courtesy of Kinfolk

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