The Medicinal Uses of Honey Through the Ages


The Medicinal Uses of Honey Through the Ages


The history and medicinal use of honey is as old as the time. From Stone Age and cave paintings of about 15,000 years ago to ancient Egyptian and Greek hieroglyphs and from 2000 years old Chinese traditions to ancient Indian and Ayurvedic legends, honey has really stood the test of time.

Honey has been used across various cultures for medicinal and healing purposes. Recent research has shown it to have a mix of several healthy components like Vitamins, Amino Acids, minerals, iron, zinc, and antioxidants which goes to show why the ancients held it in such high esteem.

Here is what Mr. Basem Barry, the CEO of Dubai-based B A BARRY Group and the mastermind behind Geohoney has to say about it

“Pure honey is a powerful healing food and I believe adding it to our lives can really make a positive difference. Especially the monofloral honey which is the speciality of Geohoney is something you can enjoy any time and as an ingredient in most food items to get that distinct taste and aroma.” 

This natural sweetener has been harvested for medical applications for thousands of years and people from all cultures and civilizations have used it for this purpose in one way or another.

The current global honey market recorded a very high revenue of about USD 9.3 billion in 2023 which shows how much people still value it even after thousands of years.  


Following are some notable medicinal uses of honey through different ages and eras

  • Honey in Early Civilizations
  • Ancient Egyptians
  • Greeks and The Medicinal Use of Honey
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine
  • Ancient India: The Vedas & Ayurvedic Medicine
  • Honey in Islam
  • Honey in the Modern Era


Honey in Early Civilizations

Honey has been used as a popular medicinal item since the time of ancient humans. Honey consumption dates back to the upper Paleolithic period i.e., about 25,000 years ago. A 15,000-year-old cave painting from the end of the Paleolithic era has also been discovered that depicts a man reaching into a beehive surrounded by bees to collect honey.

Some accounts suggest these people developed methods like smoking beehives for the safe collection of honey. There is overwhelming evidence that suggests the medicinal use of honey was still in practice in the Stone Age about 8,000 years ago.


Ancient Egyptians

Ancient Egyptians developed organized beekeeping as far back as circa 3,500 BC. They strongly believed in the health advantages of using pure honey. Several Egyptian papyri contain records of mixing honey with spices, fly blood, and bird blood to treat blindness, swelling, pains, and other medical conditions.

There is also some evidence that suggests Egyptians used organic honey in about 500 remedies. One ancient Egyptian text dating back 26,00 to 22,000 BCE contains the method of creating a wound salve with a mixture of honey, lint, and grease.

Egyptians also used to offer honey to their deities and in some instances, honeycombs have been discovered in the tombs of Pharoah which shows how much significance it had in this era.


Greeks and The Medicinal Use of Honey

Greek mythology and culture are also steeped with instances where honey was used as a medicine and a luxurious food item. There is a drink in ancient mythology named Ambrosia which contains honey as the main ingredient.

Another popular beverage in Greece was Oenomel which was made from unfermented grape juice and honey. This was considered to have rejuvenating features and was a popular remedy for gout, anxiety, and several nervous disorders.

The ancient Greek scientist Hippocrates describes the use of honey and vinegar for pain and honey as an additive to some medicines to cure fever. He also believed honey to relieve the symptoms of eye diseases, baldness, sore throat, and coughing.

Other notable philosophers like Homer and Aristotle also thought of honey as having healing abilities.


Traditional Chinese Medicine

The Chinese believed honey to have a balanced character and being an Earth element, they strongly held the view that it can positively influence the lungs, spleen, and large intestine health.

One mention of honey is found circa 2,000 BC by Shen Nang. He reported its use in the treatment of bacterial infections, arthritis, and gastrointestinal diseases.

The famous Chinese book about medicine “The Compendium of Materia Medica” states that honey is a substance without Yin or Yang which gives it a balanced and neutral composition and makes it valuable both for internal and external vitality.


Ancient India: The Vedas & Ayurvedic Medicine

Indian mythology considers honey as the food of Gods. They also considered it as one of the five elixirs of immortality.

Ancient Indian texts of Rigveda and Upanishads contain accounts of the mutual relationship of humans and bees. There is another ancient Indian text called Ayurvedic Medicine. The term Ayurveda means the knowledge of life and this text in many places mentions the use of honey for treating cough and bad digestion.

Ancient Indians also believed honey to be beneficial for your teeth and gums and for the treatment of insomnia. Ayurvedic medical experts also recommend the use of honey for treating skin disorders, burns, and wounds in general.


Honey in Islam

Islamic culture and scriptures also hold honey in very high esteem. There are even mentions of honey in the Holy Quran. There is a whole chapter dedicated to bees in the holy Quran titled “Surat Al Nahl”.

Owing to the superior healing powers of Organic honey, The Prophet Muhammad has also advised its use for treating many ailments. 

There was a famous Islamic scientist from Iran named Avicenna who about 1000 years ago suggested the use of honey to treat tuberculosis.


Honey in the Modern Era

In the late 19th century a lot of research was done to assess the medicinal benefits of honey. Since then much more work has been done that stands in support of the health benefits that honey provides.

It is well established now that honey has more antibacterial activity than any other natural product. This makes it effective in combating Salmonella E. coli and H Pylori organisms. The superior antimicrobial features of honey make it useful for wound healing and for the prevention of infections.

Anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and moisturizing features have also encouraged people to improve skin care routine with natural and raw honey and honey based cosmetics and skincare products.



The medicinal use of honey is not new and we have accounts from thousands of years back that provide proof of that. From the time of ancient humans to today honey has maintained its high value owing to its countless health benefits.

The attractive features of honey have inspired its use in foods, drinks, salves, and skincare products for many centuries. Even today honey is being produced all over the world and is enjoyed by people from all cultural backgrounds and civilizations. This speaks volumes about its significance and value in human history and culture.

Geohoney is the leading honey brand based in Dubai with over 130 farms equipped with the latest new-tech monofloral initiatives. Our 100% pure, raw, and natural monofloral honey is carefully prepared using single nectar sources which ensures both the high concentration of nutrients and enzymes.

Working with worldwide beekeepers from more than 53 countries Goehoney strives to produce monofloral honey that meets the highest global quality control standards while using environmentally sustainable resources and adhering to socially responsible policies.

Visit GEOHONEY right now to explore our wide range of all-natural and healthy honey products to use both as medicine and a delicious food ingredient.     





Are you happy? Go to and Buy Now !

Leave a Comment