I would recommend buying a significant supply of raw unfiltered pure honey for long term storage preparedness. Why? Because this honey will never spoil. This type of honey can be used for food (sweetener, nourishment) and medicinal purposes (treat wounds, burns, and even ulcers).
Note that honey never spoils because it inhibits the growth of bacteria (and fungi and viruses). It will essentially store forever under the right conditions.
It contains roughly 80% natural sugars (glucose & fructose), about 18% water, and 2% vitamins, minerals, pollen, and proteins.
Vitamins in honey:
Riboflavin, B6, thiamin, niacin, pantothenic acid, and a variety of amino acids.
Honey has a lower glycemic index than other sugars and is more slowly absorbed preventing spikes in insulin levels.
It is a strong antioxidant, specifically one named Pinocembrin.
Honey is apparently the only sweetener that is not man made or processed.
Antimicrobial Benefits of Honey
Honey draws fluid out of the cells of most germs like bacteria and fungi (osmotic effect). So these germs can’t grow in honey.
The exception is the dormant endospores of Clostridium botolinum. Therefore children under the age of 1 should not be given honey because their immune systems haven’t evolved enough.
Since nothing can grow in honey due to it’s antibacterial and antiviral properties, it is good to use on wounds. In fact the ancient Romans discovered this and widely used honey to treat troop wounds.
Because honey is so thick (viscous), when applied to a wound it has a strong pull to carry debris, dirt, bacteria, etc. away from the wound into the dressing.
Note: It’s best to apply the honey directly to the dressing and then apply to the wound.
Honey also has an attractive effect upon water. When honey combines with water it will steadily produce hydrogen peroxide. This has a strong antiseptic effect promoting wound healing.
You can also use honey for an upset stomach. Combine with ginger and lemon juice to treat nausea and vomiting or gastric distress of any kind, including ulcers.
Best Type Of Honey
The best type of honey for food and medicinal is RAW HONEY.
Honey that has not been processed by man. Not pasteurized with heat.
Note that strained honey is okay.
Why is most honey pasteurized? Two reasons…
1. Pasteurization (161 degrees F) will kill the yeast spores. If the water content of honey (normally about 18%) reaches 25% then the yeast spores that are in honey will activate the fermentation process. This doesn’t make the honey go bad, however it will change the flavor as it ferments. This is why it is important to keep your raw honey covered. To prevent moisture from the air diluting the honey and increasing the overall water content percentage.
2. Pasteurization also dissolves sugar crystals in honey. People often mistake the granular appearance of the suspended sugar crystals as though it has spoiled.
Look For Local Honey
Check your local farmers market for a beekeeper selling raw honey. Most all honey at a farmers market will not be pasteurized and therefore good for medicinal purposes with the enzymes still intact. If in doubt just ask them…
Beware of Honey from China
The Chinese have been notorious for adding other ingredients to their honey. Glucose, dextrose, molasses, corn syrup, starches, and other substances. Most honey at the grocery store is not pure raw honey and has been altered in some way.
Manuka Honey is best for Medicinal Properties
From New Zealand or Australia the Manuka flower (of the Manuka or ‘Tea’ tree) is the sole source for honeybees producing Manuka honey.
It is the thickest honey in the world (highest viscosity) and therefore has a very strong antibacterial effect.
If you are a prepper with interest to keep some honey for wound treatment and it’s medicinal properties, I would purchase some of this honey specifically for that. It’s expensive because it’s seasonal and only sourced from that part of the world.
How To Store Raw Honey
It’s best to store honey in glass or other food grade containers.
Honey should always be stored in a closed container with a tight lid to keep humidity and moisture out.
Note: Always use a dry utensil when scooping honey out of it’s container to avoid adding moisture.
Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and away from heat sources.
Some of the information in this article was sourced and credited from a book written by Ralph Guardia M.D., an excellent resource.
Related article: Honey and its Benefits