Warm water with lemon is a popular morning drink for supporting digestion, hydration, and healthy skin. Some people will even add honey to this morning beverage for an added sweetness. It turns out, though, warm water with honey—hold the lemon—may also have some beneficial properties.

Most commonly, people reach for honey water when a cold is coming on. Though it may be soothing for sore throats and other cold-like symptoms, is it an actual remedy? Registered dietitians and Ayurvedic experts share their opinions on the topic.

What are the benefits of honey water? 

Honey has traditionally been used to help manage everything from cold symptoms to burns, registered dietitian Titilayo Ayanwola, MPH, R.D., L.D. tells mbg. “The use of honey in various healing methodologies can be attributed to its antimicrobial, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties,” she says. “However, little is known about honey’s efficacy in combating colds.”

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