We are full into the cold season once more and the germs are flying rampant again. Over 200 different viruses now compete for a place within the warm passages of the nose and throat. It’s also a hard task to avoid these bugs. There are airborne threats all around us, circulating through heating and air conditioning systems. The areas that our hands come into contact with each day such as door handles, stair rails and lift buttons all provide further opportunities for infection (on average we touch our faces 16 times an hour!).
In the US alone, the common cold leads to 75 to 100 million doctor appointments each year. More than 24 million cases of sinusitis occur annually – it’s an ill fate we face and so no wonder we have strong dislike of these microbes of misery. Modern medicine and science is yet to find a complete cure, as each time the virus variants morph and evolve to neutralise any antibiotic that previously worked.
Well, fear not completely, research has shown there is a new answer on the block. It is a naturally occurring substance having inherent ability to nuke these infectiousness bodies in a manner where off the shelf medicines fail. This germ bashing WMD that happens to taste nice too, is a simple honey produced by Bee’s which feed on the pollen of the ‘Manuka bush’ found in New Zealand.
Honey as an antiseptic is nothing new, it has been used for several thousands of years for its healing properties. Mentions of the health benefits of honey can be found in many sources from the Quaran, to the Ayurvedic medicine texts which are dated to be 4,000 years old. It has been touted as a healing solution for external wounds and as an internally ingested as a natural elixir.
It is only however, not until recently that it was discovered to be particularly remarkable at combating infections, including strong resistant strains such as MRSA. One particular otolaryngologist, Dr. Joseph G. Marsan, M.D, based at the University of Ottawa found that it was very effective as a treatment for eliminating the bacterial biofilms present in sinus infections, much more so then conventional modern antimicrobials.
“Certain bacteria, mainly Staph aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, have found a method of shielding themselves from the activity of anti-microbials by living in substances called biofilms, which cannot be penetrated by even the most powerful anti-microbials,” Marsan said.
“Our study has shown that certain honeys, namely the Manuka honey from New Zealand and the Sidr honey from Yemen, have a powerful killing action on these bacterial biofilms that is far superior to the most powerful anti-microbials used in medicine today,” Marsan said.
Ongoing research continues today and the honey is now seen as a sustainable way of preventing MRSA outbreaks within hospitals and a viable contender for being the effective treatment for sinus issues.
I personally can provide testament to the cold nuking abilities of Manuka honey. When I now feel the tingle of a cold developing, I break out some Manuka honey. I have to say, hand on heart, each time it stopped the cold from becoming a full sinus infection and helped the infection clear up in a matter of a day or two.
Here is my own recipe for using Manuka Honey:
Start with a standard non-ionised sea salt wash.
Make mix using 10 oz of Boiled or Distilled water with a tablespoon of Manuka Honey added. If the mix feels to thick to pour then add more water.
Perform as nasal wash using a Neti Pot in the standard way.