Manuka Honey for Strep Throat: Does It Work?


5 minute read

Essential Takeaways

Strep throat can look a bit like a cold or the flu. But left untreated, it can lead to some nasty complications. Traditional antibiotics are usually prescribed to treat it quickly.

Manuka honey has been researched for decades for its antibacterial properties, and scientists have found it to be effective against a wide range of different bacteria. This is particularly exciting given the rising antibiotic resistance crisis throughout the world.

Whilst there is limited research on manuka honey for strep throat specifically, the evidence is promising, and it is safe to use for children who are most commonly affected.

Strep throat can be nasty.

Around 10,000-15,000 cases occur each year in the US, resulting in more than 2,000 deaths¹.

Although traditional antibiotics are usually prescribed to avoid these complications, we can always give our bodies an extra natural boost.

This is becoming even more important considering the rise in antibiotic resistance².

So how about manuka honey for strep throat and the sore throat that comes with it? Does its global reputation for potent health benefits stretch to strep?

We’ll discuss that and more right here.

In this guide to how manuka honey can help strep throat:

Why Use Honey for Strep Throat

Strep throat is caused by the streptococcus bacteria.

Although it sometimes looks and feels a bit like a cold, strep throat can be more dangerous³.

Left untreated, strep can lead to kidney inflammation or rheumatic fever, stroke, and even permanent heart damage³.

Honey has been used in medicine for thousands of years⁴ and thanks to advances in science and technology, we now know that it offers unique antibacterial properties.

This is particularly true for manuka honey (but we’ll get to that later).

As a result, manuka honey is often used to treat infections like colds with great results.

“I enjoy the rich creamy flavor and with a spoonful a day, I seem to avoid colds even if minor signs that I might have scratchy throat. It’s gone the next day.”

At the time of writing, there isn’t much research specifically investigating manuka honey for the streptococcus bacteria that causes strep throat.

But the evidence we do have shows that:

  • Honey is effective against most of the bacteria that have been investigated⁵.

  • Manuka honey can decrease the growth of similar oral bacteria⁶.

  • Manuka honey can be particularly effective against bacteria when used in combination with other antimicrobial treatments⁷.

  • The antibacterial activity of manuka honey is particularly important in the face of the antibiotic resistance crisis⁸.

We also know that manuka honey is often used to treat allergies, sinus infections, and even fungal infections.

Since manuka honey is effective against a wide range of bacteria, it seems likely that using it for strep throat should offer some health benefits.


Can I cure strep throat without antibiotics?

Every patient with strep throat has a different experience, but traditional antibiotics will likely be prescribed. Strep throat can be more serious than other types of bacterial infection, so it’s best to get medical advice as early as possible.

However, the rise in antibiotic resistance is a serious concern for doctors worldwide. In fact, over a million people died as a result of rising resistance in 2019⁹.

Using antibacterial agents like manuka honey is a great way of boosting your natural immunity and reducing the chances that you’ll need to rely on traditional antibiotics alone.

Can I give manuka honey to my child with strep throat?

Yes, manuka honey is safe for children to consume. Only young infants should avoid eating honey as well as anyone with an allergy to bees or pollen.

Always check with your doctor or your child’s doctor first.

What Makes Pure Raw Manuka Honey Best for Strep Throat?

Honey is the third most-faked food in the world.

Its global reputation for natural health and wellness has made it an attractive thing to imitate.

Today, much of the honey you see on grocery store shelves and in manufactured products has been diluted or contaminated in some way to increase the volume and meet demand.

The problem here: any antibacterial benefits are also diluted, contaminated, or lost altogether.

There are two key reasons why pure manuka honey is the best for strep throat (and medical use in general):

  1. It is the most regulated honey in the world so you can be sure you’re getting the real deal, and,

  2. It contains much more antibacterial activity than regular honey.

Methylglyoxal (MGO) is the key compound found in honey that is most associated with its antibacterial properties⁷.

Manuka honey is believed to have up to one hundred times more MGO than other honey types⁷, so it’s much more potent and is used by medical professionals worldwide.

Even vets celebrate manuka honey for its use in wound healing.

Pure, raw, monofloral manuka honey from New Zealand is the type with the most established reputation and exciting research.

The UMF™ grading system was designed to independently test and verify this exact type of honey so that consumers can buy with confidence.

This is what makes manuka the best honey to use when treating strep throat.

How to Take Manuka Honey for Strep Throat

The best way to take manuka honey for strep throat, colds, coughs, and other illnesses is straight off the spoon.

By keeping it raw, you can benefit from all the goodness without compromise.

Take one or two teaspoons a day of high-grade UMF™ manuka honey for the best results. The higher the grade, the more antibacterial the honey. We’d recommend anything above UMF™ 15+ | MGO 514+.

But if you’re not keen on that or you like to experiment, there are plenty of other ways to use manuka honey in foods and drinks for strep throat.

Here are just a few to get you started:

But woah there, that’s not all!

We’ve listed close to 200 ways to use manuka honey right here.

With just one ingredient, you get over 2,000 natural compounds.


Treat Strep Throat with New Zealand Honey Co. Manuka Honey

Transparency is one of our core values.

All our UMF™ manuka honey is independently tested and verified so that you can be confident you’re buying a genuine product when you shop with us.

You can even trace your batch and find out where it came from using the numbers on the jar!

“We absolutely love the quality of New Zealand Honey Co's honey. The taste is wonderful and the benefits are amazing. We order the 15+ once a month so have decided to subscribe, it's that great!”

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