Heads up! This post is sponsored by who is generously hosting a giveaway at the end of the post. But before you go there, read all about what manuka honey is, where it comes from, and how to use it to get the most out of it. Plus, learn how to make lozenges at home to get all the benefits.
Chances are, you?ve probably heard about manuka honey before. It?s gaining in popularity and for very good reasons! It?s a staple in my herbal apothecary. It?s good to know a little background though. The benefits can be minimized or even completely eliminated if you don?t get honey from a proper source.
Even worse, you could remove those properties by heating the honey when using it in recipes. This article takes a look at what manuka honey is, where to get it, how to use it, and a no-heat lozenge recipe.
What to Look for When Purchasing Manuka Honey
I?ve tried a number of manuka brands over the years and is the high quality and tasty honey that I stock my shelves with. They?ve maintained a high standard and continue to provide pure manuka products. Unfortunately, not every company can say the same. That?s why it?s crucial to know what you should look for when purchasing this type of honey.
Look at the MGO Levels
MGO stands for Methylglyoxal, a crucial antibacterial property of this type of honey. I?ll tell you more about that below, but for now, just know that any company that doesn?t list the MGO or have a conversion to MGO is at best doing you a disservice. Worst case, they are trying to pass off a lower grade honey.
Other Numbers to Check
The price of Manuka honey is determined by its MGO level. This means the higher the level the more it will cost. Some companies will try to inflate the price by heating the honey up, which causes the MGO to spike, or even add artificial MGO to the honey.
For this reason, it is crucial to test for 2 other compounds: dihydroxyacetone (DHA) and hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF). The HMF should be less than 80, or even better, less than 40. By looking at these two levels, you?ll be able to tell if the honey has been adulterated. Here?s an example of what a chart might look like:
Lastly, note the NPA (Non-Peroxide Activity) result. This is the generic term for UMF, which stands for a unique manuka factor. This is a grading system in New Zealand to ensure only high quality, pure manuka honey is labeled as such.
Growing Manuka Plants
Manuka (Leptospermum scoparium) are native to New Zealand and are part of ecological regeneration projects throughout the country. The plants can grow in poor soil and on steep hillsides, preventing erosion. They are tolerant of extreme weather and provide food and shelter to wildlife.
Manuka honey farmers need to find flowering shrubs in spring to early summer, and transport the hives there, which is not always an easy job given how extreme the geography can be.
Health Benefits of Manuka Honey
So, what is manuka honey? It isn?t like maple syrup, where the plants produce the sweet liquid. Instead, it?s like all honey, made when bees pollinate plants and create honey from the pollen. Manuka honey comes from bees that have pollinated manuka plants.
PRI only sources honey from sustainable beekeepers and donates a portion of every purchase to bee-sustainability. They are leading the charge in the manuka honey industry to protect bees and provide exceptional quality honey.
The result is a honey that has high antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. While all of these are important, I want to focus specifically on soothing a sore throat.
Lots of people take manuka honey to and . The simplest way to take manuka honey is to enjoy 1 teaspoon daily for maintenance and 1 teaspoon three times a day for conditions.
It certainly is delicious, but I find it just a bit too sweet to take straight up. Instead, I opt to make it into herbal manuka honey gummies that can be enjoyed as a daily supplement or to soothe a sore throat.
How To Make Manuka Honey Gummy Lozenges Without Heat
Last year PRI sent me a goodie box of some of their products to try. I quickly went through the box of strawberry flavoured manuka honey lozenges so I set out to make my own.
In the past, I?ve made throat drops like these , but at the high temperatures, it affects the medicinal properties of the honey. To maintain the properties of manuka honey it should not be heated above 150 degrees F, staying below 125 degrees F to be safe. This includes putting it into tea that is too hot, although tea below 125 degrees would be fine.
I experimented with two low-temperature preparations to maintain the benefits: melts and gummies.
Manuka Honey Melts
Manuka honey melts can be made by mixing equal parts coconut oil and manuka honey. Mix the two ingredients together and spoon into a silicone ice cube mold or candy mold. They taste pretty good if you like coconut and honey, and they melt in your mouth. I like both flavours and these are certainly easy to make, but my second recipe for herbal manuka gummies turned out so well and became my new go-to recipe!
Manuka Honey Gummies
Manuka honey gummies are made by mixing herbal tea and gelatin, and then adding manuka honey when the mixture cools. These delicious treats won the taste tests and pleased even the pickiest foodie in the house (my 6-year old).
I made a few versions with ginger, lemon, and herbal tea blends, but in the end, the yummiest gummies came from strongly brewed rosehip and hibiscus tea.
and hibiscus are both high in Vitamin C, so they are wonderful for cold and flu season!
Here?s how to make your own heat-free manuka honey lozenges.
Ingredients for Manuka Honey Lozenges
Makes approximately 12 lozenges with 3.75 g manuka honey each
- 1/2 cup Rosehip and hibiscus tea ? brew it strong!
- 2 tablespoons powdered gelatin
- 3 tablespoons (45g)
Brew a strong cup of tea with rosehip and hibiscus (see the recipe card below for more tips and specifics).
Strain the tea into a pot, then sprinkle in the gelatin. Whisk well.
Put it on low heat so that the gelatin fully dissolves. Once it does, use a spoon and scoop out the foamy part at the top. You can discard the foam.
Allow the mixture to cool slightly, then add the manuka honey. Remember, you don?t want the honey to get too hot!
Immediately pour the mix into your silicone mold.
You may have some foam at the top of the molds. Skim it out with a spoon and discard.
Stick the mold in the fridge so the manuka honey lozenges can set. Once they are firm, you can remove them from the mold. They will keep for seven days when stored in the fridge.
Each of these gummy lozenges will have 3-4 grams of manuka honey so have 1 to 1.5 per day for maintenance and 1 to 1.5 gummies three times per day for conditions!
Don?t forget ? there?s a giveaway from PRI at the bottom as well, so be sure to enter and make your own gummies!
Manuka Honey Lozenges
Turkish Coffee Pot
- 1/2 cup Rosehip and hibiscus tea choose strong brewed tea
- 2 tbsp powdered gelatin or 30 ml
- 3 tbsp PRI Manuka Honey 20+UMF
Brew a strong cup of rosehip and hibiscus tea. I used two tablespoons of rose hips and one tablespoon of hibiscus in my bodem but that made 2 cups of tea. I used 1/2 for this recipe, and the rest was made into iced tea. Steep for 30 minutes.
Strain the tea and add it to a small pot or Turkish coffee pot (I like the later because of the pour spout).
Sprinkle the gelatin into the pot and whisk to combine.
Set it on low heat to warm up slightly, enough to dissolve the gelatin.
When the gelatin is dissolved, use a spoon to remove the foam.
Allow to cool to just slightly warm, and mix in the manuka honey.
Immediately pour into silicone molds.
Use a spoon to remove any extra foam from the tops of the lozenges.
Put the lozenges in the fridge to set.
When firm, remove the from molds and store in the fridge for up to 7 days.
PRI wants to give one of our readers a Manuka Honey gift box as well! The box contains a jar of , , and . This contest is now closed. Congratulations to the winner, Colleen!
There are many home remedies you can easily make and have on hand when minor ailments arise. These holistic recipes use garden herbs and natural ingredients to stock your herbal medicine cabinet.
If you have ever wondered how to create an herbal medicine cabinet, this is a great place to start. I?m thrilled to share some of my favorite home remedies that I use with my family.
Personally, I like to keep my medicine cabinet stocked and ready. As you can imagine, the last thing you want to do when you are sick is to make a bunch of DIY projects, no matter how great the outcome! This list will help you be prepared and ready to fight a wide variety of common ailments. I also am sure to keep my home apothecary stocked up with the ingredients I need in a pinch. Read more here on what I stock in my .
Before we go any further, I have to stress that I?m not a medical professional. If you have a serious condition and think you need to see a doctor, please stop reading this and go right now!
Of course, not all ailments need a doctor. In many cases, learning how to make some of these home remedies is helpful as a first treatment for minor and common issues like colds, sore throats, cuts, bruises, sunburns, and muscle aches. And we all have those, right? I choose home remedies as go-to relief for minor things that pop up. If the condition worsens or persists, I may look a bit further for help, but in many cases, I can find the healing support I need right in my garden and home apothecary.
Home Remedies From Your Herb Garden
Whether you are fighting itchy eyes or a congested chest, there are herbs in your garden that people have relied on for centuries. When you are trying to use all-natural ingredients, these should be the main things you keep in your holistic medicine cabinet.
These recipes are not intended to diagnose or treat any disease and you should always check with your health care professional before trying any home remedies. Use your common sense and please be well my friends.
Home Remedies for Body Aches & Pain
Natural Pain-Relief Balm
This balm soothes sore muscles with the magic of turmeric and cayenne pepper. It actually feels warm when you apply it to your skin. Turmeric eases inflammation in your body while the cayenne pepper warms the tissues and fights the pain you feel. I use it after I get a sore back from gardening.
Follow the easy recipe for .
An Epsom salt soak is a great way to soothe the aches of the day away. Adding herbs and other botanicals can also be skin soothing, but it?s not that much fun to clean up after the bath. Make that is healing and requires no clean up afterwards.
Herbal Foot Soak
Sometimes you just feel under the weather. When this happens, adding a few scoops of this to a bowl of warm water and soaking your feet helps you feel better. The steam from this healing foot soak also helps with congestion. Pamper yourself with this homemade foot soak made from herbs out of your garden.
Find the complete recipe for the .
Pampering Peppermint for Feet
Cooling peppermint is made for sore feet. Exfoliating sugar and dried herbs will scrub away rough skin, coconut oil will soften cracks, and soothing peppermint essential oil has a cooling, pain-relieving effect.
See the steps to make your own and
Roll on Headache Relief
When I first feel a headache coming on, I use a roller bottle with essential oils to catch it before it gets momentum. Usually this is all I need to send the headache packing. Roller bottle remedies are a great thing to keep on hand in the medicine cabinet.
Here are three
Home Remedies for Topical Skin Relief
First Aid Salve From Calendula
I use this salve in place of a petroleum-based antiseptic cream. I use my all-natural calendula salve on minor wounds and cuts. It?s mild and perfectly safe to use on pets and children. Plus, it smells wonderful!
Find this .
Topical Antifungal Treatment
This homemade tea tree oil antifungal treatment stick helps to soothe red spots and rashes in a gentle but direct way. It?s packaged in a handy tube so you can treat the itchy, painful spots quickly.
Have treatment on hand using this recipe for
Drawing Salve Recipe for Bug Bites, Blisters, Splinters
A drawing salve is a mixture of oils and herbal ingredients that work to draw toxins from your skin and can be used on mosquito bites, wasp or bee stings, blisters, boils, slivers, and minor infections.
Make your own with this recipe for
Don?t kill the dandelions in your yard ? they could be used to make a pain-relieving salve. These yellow weeds actually have pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. Use this salve on achy muscles and other pains you have.
Follow the recipe on
And make lips kissable with this
Cold Sores and Little Red Spots
Lemon balm?s antiviral properties make it a popular herb for the treatment for cold sores, chicken pox, bug bites, and other little red spots. This recipe for lemon balm lip balm not only has a bright and cheery lemon fragrance but it also is a great way to prevent and treat cold sores.
This soothing cuticle balm is packed with an herbal blend that will mend those cracks and make hands soft again. It?s essential to treat dry hands when doing a lot of hand washing.
Craft up this
Hand & Body Lotion
Lotion may seem like a beauty product choice rather than a herbal remedy, but this one is made from skin soothing floral water and nourishing oils that help to repair and protect dry skin. Keeping skin soft helps to keep it healthy, and so I?m never without this recipe.
Stock up on
Natural Skin Soother
Use calming witch hazel to soothe razor burns and rashes, and cool down inflammation. It?s made from the branches of the witch hazel tree and can also be used as a face toner.
Home Remedies for Summer
Summertime brings a whole host fun things that require some seasonal home remedies. The blazing sun can unexpectedly burn your skin and bugs love to come out to join the party.
Aloe Vera for Sunburns
Aloe is known as a sunburn cooler, and there is no better way to use it than straight from the plant! This remedy wont fit inside your herbal medicine cabinet, but you can set it in a pot beside it.
How to use .
Protect Your Lips
Your lips can get sunbured too! Be sure to protect them with this
This salve is made with skin-healing aloe vera. It?s perfect for helping heal minor burns or skin that?s just feeling itchy and dry. I also love to apply it after a good scrub in the shower. It removes all the sunscreen residue my soap leaves behind. Find the recipe for
And if you did burn your lips, use this .
Bug Off Naturally
Send mosquitoes away with skin-soothing ingredients that won?t make you cringe to apply. It?s easy to make this
Insect Bite Roll-On
This little roller bottle is filled with a concoction that will ease the itchiness and swelling you get from bug bites. In fact, if you catch the bite right away and add the roll-on immediately to it, you might even avoid getting any bump on your skin at all. If you scratched it a bit, then you might need to add a few applications of this stuff to help it feel better.
Made with witch hazel, lavender and tea tree essential oils. Get the easy recipe so you can make your own .
Home Remedies for Cold & Flu Season
Cold and flu symptoms can also get some relief from home recipes using herbs. First things first, try to prevent getting them using hand sanitizer and boosting your immune system. After that, treat the symptoms with herbs to help get through the virus.
This natural hand sanitizer recipe packs a big punch at cleaning while softening my hands. I have used it for years when I can?t wash my hands. Make the gentle herbal
I also formulated a 70% alcohol based hand sanitizer to use when viruses are prevalent. Make a
Immune-System Boosting Elderberry Syrup
Elderberry syrup is another herbal remedy lots of people rely on during cold/flu season. It boosts your immune system and helps you fight the symptoms faster. This recipe also has rosehips and astragalus for even more power.
Follow the Recipe on .
Ease Congestion With DIY Shower Steamers
After my doctor suggested I sit in steam to clear out my sinuses, I started to experiment with adding herbs to it. These steamers are amazing. They have lavender and eucalyptus in them and work for me every time.
I love eucalyptus during cold and flu season. A found that eucalyptus essential oil has ?antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal components and a long history of use against the effects of colds, influenza, other respiratory infections, rhinitis, and sinusitis.?
Find the recipe for .
Best Tea For Sore Throats
Lots of home remedies for sore throats and cold symptoms include a tea of some sort. This is my favorite recipe: a combination of ginger, honey, lemon, and sage. All of them are all-natural anti-inflammatories.
This recipe is one of several on my list of you should check out.
Sage Candy For Sore Throats
These really do taste like candy. Plus, I have yet to find another way that?s as effective for treating a sore throat. The herb sage is commonly used to combat sore throats and inflamed gums. If you have sores inside your mouth, this can help that as well. It?s a very soothing herb.
Find the recipe for this .
Echinacea Tincture: Boost Your Immune System
Echinacea is an herb that almost everyone associates with boosting the immune system. It?s even been proven to shorten the duration of colds and flues. I love these flowers in my garden, too. I make a tincture from this herbal flower and take it when I?m feeling the first signs of a cold ? that itchy throat or stuffy nose.
Find the complete recipe for your own .
Congestion Relief Chest Rub Recipe
I use this instead of a store-bought vapor rub. It works just as well and is made with essential oils. I love how moisturizing the olive and coconut oils are.
If you have dry, painful skin under your nose, rub a dab of this on it. It?ll make it feel so much better. Coconut oil also has natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties too!
I created this recipe and it works great for me and my family, but please test a tiny amount on yourself before using it. If it?s too strong, use less of the essential oils. This recipe is for adults only since some of the essential oils are not recommended for children.
Find the recipe for this .
Herbal Cough Drops
These cough drops aren?t just good at helping your throat feel better. They also help calm your cough and even fight the germs that are making you feel under the weather. These antiviral herbal cough drops are made with honey, sugar, herbal tea, and peppermint extract.
Follow the recipe on .
Holistic Remedies: Final Thoughts
I hope you found something ? or even a few somethings ? that you can add to your herbal medicine cabinet. It?s pretty impressive how many things plants in our gardens can do. From soothing a sore throat to easing congestion, plants are powerful.
Please for more information about how to grow the herbs you read about in this post.
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