Friday, December 07, 2007

Honey Calms Children's Coughs, Tastes Ohh So Good

According to a new report, honey, that sweet, delicious substance produced by honey bees, seems to calm children's coughs and help them sleep better.

The AP writes:

For the study, researchers recruited 105 children with upper respiratory infections from a clinic in Pennsylvania. Parents were given a paper bag with a dosing device inside. Some were empty. Some contained an age-appropriate dose of honey-flavored cough medicine containing dextromethorphan. And some contained a similar dose of honey.

The parents were asked about their children's sleep and cough symptoms, once before the bedtime treatment and once after. They rated the symptoms on a seven-point scale.

All of the children got better, but honey consistently scored best in parents' rating of their children's cough symptoms.
It looks like honey, that luscious, gooey substance derived from the nectar of flowers, has dealt a major blow to the pediatrics field. The study, funded by the National Honey Board, comes after an expert panel of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has called for a complete ban on all over-the-counter remedies aimed at children under the age of 6. And many leading doctors agree that if used incorrectly, the cough syrups have the potential to do serious harm.

"This is a huge victory for honey and honey lovers everywhere," said Ed Reed, spokesman for the National Honey Board. "It turns out your grandma was right all along."

Honey is a rich source of antioxidant and antimicrobial compounds that may aid healing. Lead researcher Ian Paul of Pennsylvania State University in Hershey also suspects much of the benefit might come from the "soothing effect of the thick, syrup-like liquid [honey] on the back of the throat." It seems to "calm the irritation that leads to cough."

While scientists and researchers were surprised at the findings, lovers of honey, that irresistibly wonderful nectar of the gods, relished their long over-due vindication.

"Everyone always called me crazy," said Winnie-the-Pooh from his home in the Hundred Acre Wood. "Who's laughing now?"

In other news a tractor-trailer carrying honey buns overturned on I-77 in Charlotte Thursday morning. The truck collided with another vehicle but no one was seriously hurt. Investigators say the sweet, chewy honey buns deployed on impact creating a soft, almost air-like cushion around the vehicles. The driver of the big rig was taken to the hospital with non life threatening injuries.

Honey, is there anything it can't do?

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