I see families spending so much money on over the counter cough and cold medicines when research has clearly shown that they don’t work and can have serious side effects. Both of these studies showed that honey was more effective than Dextromethorphan which is the DM on all those cough medicine bottles and better than Benadryl too.
So the next question I get is how much honey should be given ?
These two studies done that showed honey to be effective suggested these age based doses 2-5 years: 1/2 tsp; 6-11 years 1 tsp; 12-18 years 2 tsp.
The other home remedy using honey is based on Ayurveda and suggests mixing 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp honey, adding a pinch of turmeric powder and using that ratio to make more…many families have given me feedback that this works very well too.
Paul et al, Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med, 161(12), 2007Compared honey, dextromethorphan and no treatment in 105 children aged 2-18 years for nocturnal cough and sleep difficulty. Amount of honey was age-based: 2-5 years: 1/2 tsp; 6-11 years 1 tsp; 12-18 years 2 tsp.
In a comparison of honey, DM, and no treatment, parents rated honey most favorably for symptomatic relief of their child’s nocturnal cough and sleep difficulty due to upper respiratory tract infection. Honey may be a preferable treatment for the cough and sleep difficulty associated with childhood upper respiratory tract infection.
Shadkam et al, J Altern Complement Med, 16(7), 2010Compared honey, dextromethorphan and diphenhydramine in 139 children aged 24-60 months for nocturnal cough and sleep difficulty. Dose was 1/2 tsp.
The result of the study demonstrated that receiving a 2.5-mL dose of honey before sleep has a more alleviating effect on URIs-induced cough compared with DM and DPH doses