Honey Calms Tots’ Coughs

A spoonful of honey may help soothe coughing among children too young for cough medicine, MedPage Today reported Aug. 6.

A 10-gram dose of honey 30 minutes before bedtime cut coughing nearly in half among children ages 1 to 5, researchers from Tel Aviv University in Israel found. The highly rigorous study followed 300 children with had upper respiratory tract infections, a nocturnal cough, and an illness duration of less than a week.

While the researchers are not sure why honey is so effective at treating coughs, honey’s antioxidant and antimicrobial properties are well-known. The findings show that all-natural honey could be ta good homeopathic cough treatment for younger children in the U.S., where most over-the-counter medication is restricted to ages four and older.

Infants, however, should not be given honey due to a risk of contracting infantile botulism, the researchers say.

The study appears online in the journal Pediatrics.

(Photo © Fifth World Art via Flickr)