Honey is a food every prepper should have on hand. Aside from its sweet taste, honey also won’t ever spoil. If it ever crystallizes on you, simply heat the jar in some warm water for a bit, and it will flow smoothly again.
Also, if becoming a beekeeper might be of interest to you, the November 2014 issue of The Independence Report contains a detailed primer on what it takes to get started.
Aside from sweetening our food and drink, there are a number of other useful applications for honey that you may not know about.
1. Use It on Wounds
As a natural antiseptic, honey is a great stand-in for Neosporin if you burn, cut, scrape, or otherwise wound yourself and want to fend off infection.
2. Soothe Your Sore Throat
Coating your throat with honey is a great way to fight off the tender feeling you face when it’s sore. Combine it with the juice of a lemon for even better results.
3. Moisturize Your Skin
Speaking of issues that arise during the winter, honey can be used to moisturize your skin too. Just rub it into your elbows, hands or any other places dry patches form. Then let it sit for a half hour before you wash it away. Honey can also be used as lip balm too.
4. Get Rid of a Cough
Alright, one more for winter ailments: honey is great for getting rid of coughs. Not only does it coat your throat, as we covered, but the flavor is believed to trigger certain nerves that make you less sensitive to the impulse to cough.
5. Boost Immunity
Of course, you can stay clear of many of these illnesses if you take honey regularly. Its phytonutrients have antiviral properties that can help give your immune system the edge over all kinds of sicknesses.
6. Condition Your Hair
Although worrying about your hair probably shouldn’t take too much of your time in a survival situation, there’s no reason not to be using honey right now to repair damaged follicles. Just add a teaspoon of it to your normal shampoo. For even better results, mix it with olive oil and apply as a deep conditioner. Then wrap your hair in a towel for 20 minutes before you shampoo as usual.
7. Use It for a Facial
Another way you can use honey to beautify yourself is with this simple facial recipe. Thanks to its antimicrobial properties, your face will love just a dollop of honey mixed with two tablespoons of warm water. Massage it over your skin, let it sit for a few minutes (or longer, if you’re relaxing) and then wash it off.
8. Kill off Parasites
While no one wants to imagine a day when they need to worry about parasites in their stomach, it would be fairly easy to contract one in a survival situation. Fortunately, you can combine honey with equal parts vinegar and water for a mixture that is fairly easy to drink and effective at killing off the parasite.
9. Take as a Stimulant
Forget Red Bull and caffeine pills, the next time you need a boost of energy before your workout, enjoy a tablespoon of honey. There’s science to back up that it will improve your athletic performance. You can also mix it into tea in order to replace coffee in your diet.
10. Trigger Sleep
On the other hand, it can also help with getting you to sleep. If your body already has tryptophan active—which is supposed to help with sleep—but can’t process it for some reason, honey may be able to do the trick.
11. Bathe with It
We already covered that honey can be great for your skin, so try bathing in it. All you need is a few tablespoons of honey for sweeter smelling water that will help you relax and leave your skin much better off.
12. Fight off Allergies
Eating local honey has been shown to help many people fend off their allergies. Due to the local pollen in the honey, many scientists believe it works as a vaccination of sorts, helping your immune system build up a tolerance to the allergens in the area. Take a few teaspoons a day.
13. Soothe Your Bowels
If you currently deal with IBS or you find your bowels are having a tough time living off the land in a survival situation, honey may be the answer. Studies have shown it can help to reduce inflammation in the bowel.
Although you may be most familiar with honey as a healthy alternative to sugar and other sweeteners, don’t forget that it’s invaluable for a number of other reasons too, 13 of which are listed above.
A reminder: All of these suggestions are for adults, teens and children ONLY! Never give an infant less than 12 months old honey. Their digestive tract is not fully developed, and may not be able to kill spores which are harmless to older humans.