lemon and honey drink

lemonreamer.jpg lemonsqeeze.jpg

do you have a homemade cold and flu remedy? did your mum make you lemon and honey drinks when you were a kid?

I got the late summer death flu that seems to be going around everywhere, and spent 3 days in a fever-coma in bed, then drugged myself stupid with cold and flu meds for the first week of honours classes at uni. I’m sure I made a good first impression staring blankly with my mouth hanging open, wheezing and leaking mucus out my nose.

Consequently I have been living on mostly yogurt, lentils and flatbreads. none of this was particularly photogenic. I craved and made tzatziki over and over and over, and ate maybe 2 kg yogurt in a week. Just yogurt, garlic, salt, cucumber. I ate lentils in soup and dahl form, and ate flatbread with beans, herbs, carrot and yogurt in some variation several times. a few other meals in the mix, but that was pretty much it…

and the lemon and honey drinks. just like mama used to make.

My Lemon and Honey Drink Recipe

squeeze the juice of 1 lemon into a mug, add ~2 large teaspoons of natural pure honey (manuka is preferable, but goddamn, it’s like $9 for 400gs here!), then add boiled water to fill cup. stir and drink while huddled under blanket (in front of roaring fire is preferable). repeat until well!


this makes a very strong tasting drink, because I like feeling the lemony acid soothing my raw throat, and when I have a flu I can’t taste much. if it’s too strong for you, add more honey, or just squeeze half the lemon and use the other half for your friend’s drink or for yours, later. der.

if you are REALLY sick, like on the verge of death, add a chunk of fresh ginger, and a small, bruised but not crushed clove of fresh garlic.


aaaah, that’s better!

note: the tall glass is for visual effect only; when ill, I advise sticking with favourite large ugly mug with handle.

whb-two-year-icon.jpgThis is my entry in this week’s Weekend Herb Blogging, being kindly hosted by Kel over at Green Olive Tree (a really lovely blog!). so, Lemon… yeah, everyone knows about lemon, right. a great WHB topic eh? but wait…. why are lemons so good for the flu then?

According to this website, both honey and lemon are ancient and well recognised cold and flu cures. they say: honey, because it promotes mucus flow, and lemon because of it’s acidity, which makes your delicate and infection-prone mucus membranes taste bad to the bacteria and viruses! also the natural oils are antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal, and also promote mucus flow.

Check out this wacky webpage which claims colds and flus are caught via the middle ear and lemons are alkaline and balance an overly acidic, and therefore sick, body! man, the things you find on the internets! but here is another site extolling the many benefits of lemons for health and wellbeing, and they also mention some alkalinisation powers of lemons, so who knows… (we do know they are most definitely acid – ph of 2-3, not alkaline!)

Anyway, lemons, of course, have a ton if vitamin C, which is a great immune / healing vitamin, especially in conjunction with zinc (I took supplements of both to speed up the recovery). and here is the ubiquitous wiki link, which actually does have some interesting, though non-flu related, info if you’re feeling keen on lemons now! whichever way you want to look at it, a steaming cup of lemon and honey is, at the very least, definitely going to make you feel soothed and comforted when you’re sick, so give it a go!

and while we’re on lemons, don’t they have the most beautiful little blossoms? I think citrus blossom scent has to be one of my absolute favourite smells. gorgeous!


9 thoughts on “lemon and honey drink

  1. Dear Zoe,
    i hope you feel better. Today is here the first day of spring, even if you don’t feel so much about it. Its snowing!!

  2. that looks like a proper cold remedy drink for sure. i make ours similar but i add fresh peeled ginger root to steep in the liquid…..mmmm hope u feeling better …sniff

  3. I also had the flu a couple of weeks ago, but I prepared my lemon and honey drink with apricot schnapps from the black forest, and it worked great! šŸ˜‰

    Unfortunately a couple of days later I started taking antibiotics and I had to remove the schnapps from the flu remedy:(

    anyway, I hope you’re over the flu coma. Here it’s still snowing… but not enough for making snowmen šŸ˜¦

  4. add thyme some of the zest and ginger for a good bit of zing. Also tea of liccorice root is very good to soothe the throat. Everyone is probably better by now

  5. Thank you so much for posting the directions for this drink. I tried ringing my mom for the recipie but the phone was engaged. Thank you again for perfect directions.

  6. Pingback: tzatziki recipe
  7. Hi

    Lemons are alkalising even though they have an acidic pH when you test them, reason being they contain high levels of the alkaline minerals such as calcium, potassium and magnesium.

    kind regards
    Dr. Gerald Veurink

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