Move over, prehistoric bears. Humans have loved honey since the Stone Age.
Today, proponents of honey tout its miraculous healing properties, claiming that it can prevent cancer and heart disease, reduce ulcers, ease digestive problems, regulate blood sugar, soothe coughs and sore throats, and increase athletic performance.
But just how many of these uses, ancient or modern, have been proved by science?
Thumbs up: Antibacterial properties
There’s no doubt honey has the power to kill bacteria. Studies have shown that it is effective against dozens of strains, including E. coli and salmonella. A specific type of honey from New Zealand, called manuka honey, along with Malaysian Tualang honey, has been shown to fight staph and the digestive bacteria responsible for peptic ulcers, H. pylori.