Cold and flu season is upon us. Here in Northern California, temps are plunging into the 20s and 30s and snow may be on its way. It is important to have a strong immune system to fight off these winter maladies.



fountain water with cork floats for honeybees is frozen

A frozen sheet of ice blocks the cork (permitting honeybees to drink) from moving in our backyard fountain





I’m taking down another jar of honey from the shelf where I stacked the jars over the summer. One teaspoon of raw buckwheat honey taken daily has been recommended by doctors as a powerful booster for the immune system. See



With the weather change comes the cold and flu season, so I shouldn’t have been surprised that my husband came home from work yesterday feeling out of sorts. Our neighbors have all been sick with colds and he’s concerned that he might have caught the bug.



I made him a cup of hot ginger tea, sweetened with raw honey. Honey can be consumed directly from the spoon or in hot water or in a tea or infusion with lemon.



I became a believer in honey and ginger tea years ago while studying Tai Chi. My 84-year-old teacher swore by drinking hot tea made by steeping an inch or two of fresh, peeled ginger and adding lemon and honey. Her stamina was nothing short of remarkable–she not only did Tai Chi, but sang opera, painted Chinese brush paintings, and taught many classes on herbs, reflexology, and other aspects of health and fitness in California and Hawaii.




Sheets and blankets cover citrus trees around our farmette as temps plunge

Using sheets and blankets, we’ve covered the citrus trees around our farmette as temps are expected to plunge into the 20s tonight



Holistic practitioners have long espoused belief in the healthful benefits of raw honey. Honey was used by the ancient Greeks and Romans for a variety of maladies. Modern medical doctors and researchers have extolled honey’s antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, and many cold and flu preparations contain honey as an ingredient. It a cost-effective way to treat a cough. See



Honey is the only food on the planet that does not go bad. It may crystallize, but it never becomes sugar. Crystallized honey in a jar can be returned to liquid by removing the lid and setting the jar in warm water. Never heat honey in the microwave or boil it because it will destroy the natural enzymes. And never give honey to a child under the age of one year because of the risk of their developing botulism.



You don’t have to wait to start gaining the benefit of raw honey. You can strengthen your immune system now before the dreaded cold and flu sweeps through your neighborhood. Daily consumption of a teaspoon of raw honey (from flower-fed bees) that has been minimally filtered can be good for your health and, especially, your immune system.



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