Just a spoonful of bee’s honey before bedtime might help young children who have a cough, sleep during the night, a recent study suggests. Parents reported that giving kids honey made their coughing less severe and less frequent.
Coughs are very common and one reason many children visit their doctor. However, doctors said that therapies for cold and cough symptoms are not always effective and can create side effects.
Many of the over the counter cold and cough products have warnings that say they cannot be used for children less than four years of age. One concern with the medicines is that partners inadvertently administer too much to kids or kids take the medicines themselves. Honey is practically 100% safe, as opposed to the other medications taken for coughs.
Israeli researchers randomly assigned 300 children who were between the ages of one and five, to one of four night time treatments for cough. Thirty minutes prior to bedtime, the children were given 10 grams of one of three forms of honey – including citrus and eucalyptus-based honey – or date based syrup that was sweet by had no honey.
The parents reported how well they slept and their children slept after taking the honey and syrup. On average, the parents started with giving the children a rating of 3 based on a 7-point scoring scale. That improved in all four groups following the administering of honey and the syrup, but more so in the children who received honey.
Honey, said doctors, is very rich with antioxidants so that could have a role in fighting the infection that causes cold symptoms. They also said that different types of honey might also have different antioxidants like flavonoids and vitamin C.