Honeysuckle Uses, Benefits, Side Effects and How to Grow

Honeysuckle is a flowering plant native to Europe and Asia. It has been gaining popularity as an ornamental plant in recent years because of its pretty flowers, which are often used in bouquets. It can be found growing wild or cultivated, depending on the climate where you live. Honey from honeysuckle nectar has a unique taste that makes it popular with chefs who use honey for cooking and baking applications.,

Honeysuckle is a flowering plant that has been used for centuries in folk medicine. It has many benefits, including the ability to treat skin conditions and boost immunity.

Honeysuckles are generally associated with joyful childhood memories, but did you know there’s more to this magnificent flower than its sweet flavor and wonderful aroma? Honeysuckle is quite beneficial to one’s health. The plant’s blooms, seeds, and leaves offer a variety of therapeutic properties.

What can you do with honeysuckle? The following are just a few examples of what it may be used for:

  • Colds, the flu, and pneumonia are all upper respiratory tract illnesses.
  • Infections caused by viruses and bacteria
  • Pain and inflammation of the small intestine are examples of digestive diseases (enteritis)
  • Fever and headaches
  • Urinary problems
  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis

What Is Honeysuckle?

Lonicera (honeysuckle) is a typical garden shrub with sweet blossoms. However, there are hundreds of species that flourish in mild temperatures throughout the globe. The plants are all members of the Lonicera genus, which belongs to the Caprifoliaceae family.

Does honeysuckle have a pleasant scent? This is a question that you most likely already know the answer to. It’s always delightful to get a smell of honeysuckles, which has a lovely flowery perfume-like scent. However, it may come as a surprise to learn that this well-known plant also has several health advantages.

Health Advantages

1. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties

According to a study, although not all honeysuckle berries are safe to eat, Lonicera caerulea possesses edible berries with potent and fantastic health qualities. They are abundant in disease-fighting antioxidants, for starters. In addition, another animal research published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry in 2017 suggests that Lonicera caerulea berry polyphenols may reduce inflammation, which might lead to a slew of additional benefits as inflammation is at the core of most disorders.

2. Antiviral and Immune Boosting

Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle) is a honeysuckle that is extensively utilized in Traditional Chinese Medicine. It blooms yellow-white and bears blackberries. These honeysuckle berries were shown to help the immune system operate in a 2018 research study. The berries significantly boosted natural killer cell activity in immunosuppressed mice animals and acted as an immunomodulatory agent. Natural killer cells (often referred to as NK cells) are a kind of white blood cell that may destroy both viruses and tumor cells.

3. Scent of Nature

Honeysuckle’s aroma, like that of neroli essential oil, is a beautiful natural perfume in and of itself. Pure honeysuckle essential oil might be difficult to come by, but if you do, it makes for a lovely personal aroma when blended with a carrier oil like coconut oil. Diffusers, baths, and DIY cleaning products, and linen sprays all benefit from it.

4. Oral Care

Because of its astringent and antibacterial characteristics, honeysuckles are occasionally used in natural gargles and mouthwashes. To make a DIY mouthwash, mix two cups of water with a half cup of fresh honeysuckle leaves and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for another five minutes once the mixture has come to a spot. Of course, please wait until the mixture has cooled before putting it in your mouth.

5. Diabetic complications

Honeysuckle has the potential to treat persons with type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in 2015. Lonicera japonica was given to diabetic rats at a dosage of 100 mg/kg for four weeks. After four weeks of therapy, Lonicera japonica reduced elevated blood glucose levels and insulin resistance in the animal subjects. Overall, the findings demonstrate that this honeysuckle cultivar has anti-diabetic properties in type 2 diabetic rats.

Another study from 2014 found that an extract of Lonicera japonica had powerful anti-inflammatory properties that may lessen the severity of diabetic nephropathy. The section of the blooming aerial portions suppressed the inflammatory response that causes nephropathy.

6. Rheumatoid Arthritis

Honeysuckle seems to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant characteristics, making it a natural medicine that may benefit arthritis patients. In addition, the phenolic chemicals contained in the berries of the Lonicera caerulea plant were highlighted in a study published in The Journal of Functional Foods.

In this research, animal patients with adjuvant-induced arthritis were given Lonicera caerulea extract orally, and the generation of inflammatory enzymes in the spleen was reduced. In addition, after administration of the section, beneficial antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) were restored, whereas transaminases (also known as liver enzymes) were suppressed. This is essential because people with different forms of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, often have high liver enzymes.

Traditional Medical Applications

The honeysuckle flower is associated with the lung, stomach, and large intestine meridians in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It also has cooling characteristics, making it an effective natural cure for eliminating heat and toxins from the body. Skin infections, ulcers, fevers, and inflammatory diseases are among the illnesses TCM practitioners employ the flower both orally and topically.

Native Americans boil fresh honeysuckle leaves in water and apply them to wounds to speed up healing.

Drawbacks

Is honeysuckle a toxic plant? Honeysuckle leaves, and stems should be consumed with caution since they contain saponins, which may be harmful if consumed in high quantities.

While honeysuckles are not commonly harmful, it is crucial to ensure that you and your pets do not consume any of the deadly varieties. Consumption of toxic plant components in high amounts might result in severe sickness. If you or your pet has eaten a poisonous plant of any kind, get emergency medical attention as soon as possible. For further information, call the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

Honeysuckles are native to North America, although some have been brought in from Asia. In several American states, Asian Japanese honeysuckles (Lonciera japonica) are deemed invasive and may drown out other plants. Is honeysuckle a tree killer? Lonicera japonica may also grow up and tightly around tree trunks, perhaps killing them.

Poison Sumac vs. Honeysuckle vs. Jasmine vs. Catnip

Honeysuckles and jasmine are both vines that provide lovely natural smells. While there are other edible honeysuckle species, Jasminum sambac is the sole edible jasmine species. The other jasmine species are all toxic. Jasmine, like honeysuckle, is used in many cosmetic products.

Although it may seem unusual to compare honeysuckles to catnip, honeysuckles may be used to substitute this herb that drives many, but not all, cats insane. Cats who don’t react to catnip have been reported to respond to honeysuckles. Lonicera tatarica, often known as Tatarian honeysuckles, is a cat-friendly cultivar.

Both honeysuckles and poison sumac have the potential to become invasive in North America. While poison sumac is usually considered dangerous to humans, several species of honeysuckles have been used successfully for ages, both orally and physically.

How to Grow

Honeysuckles are simple to grow and care for. A climber or a vine and a honeysuckle bush/shrub are the two primary forms of honeysuckle in terms of physical appearance. Climbers thrive in rich, wet, well-drained soil and produce more blossoms if the vine’s top is exposed to direct sunlight. Honeysuckle shrubs thrive in well-drained soil and may be grown in either full sun or moderate shade.

If you want to attract hummingbirds to your yard, coral honeysuckle is a terrific option. Green foliage and coral-colored blossoms characterize this honeysuckle vine cultivar. Bright red honeysuckle fruit may also be seen on coral honeysuckle. You may also cultivate Cape honeysuckle, which has vividly colored blossoms that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Bush honeysuckle is a spreading shrub with white to yellow blooms and red berries that may reach 20 feet. Finally, the sweet berry honeysuckle (Lonicera caerulea) shrub is an excellent option if you’re looking for a plant that produces tasty fruit. In zones two through seven, it thrives in a whole light.

If you don’t have a lot of space, several honeysuckle kinds may be grown in pots as long as they receive adequate water and fertilizer. Just remember to give your container vine a trellis or suspend the plant in a basket. Pruning honeysuckles is a fantastic way to improve their growth.

What is the best way to prune honeysuckle? You may conduct some simple maintenance pruning by cutting off any dead vine portions with sharp pruning shears. Use pruning shears to snip off the tops of the stems after the plant blooms in the spring and the flowers have faded. This might help the plant develop faster in the next flowering season.

Side Effects and Risks

There is no typical honeysuckle dose at this moment. The correct dosage is determined by a variety of variables, including the user’s health.

Is honeysuckle a safe plant to eat? As long as you use a non-poisonous variety/part of the plant, it might be safe for internal and exterior human usage. Stomach discomfort, diarrhea, an erratic heartbeat, and vomiting are all signs of poisoning. However, these unpleasant side effects are usually minor and only occur when large quantities of the herb are consumed.

It’s also crucial that you don’t have any medical issues or use any medications. Before using honeysuckle, see your doctor if you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, have a medical condition, or are presently on medication.

According to WebMD, Honeysuckle should be avoided for at least two weeks before surgery since it slows blood coagulation. In addition, honeysuckle skin contact may trigger a rash in sensitive persons to this plant family.

Honeysuckle is harmful to dogs, right? Yes, dogs are hazardous to every part of the plant. If you suspect your dog or other pet has been poisoned, contact your veterinarian right once.

Honeysuckle is known to interact with anticoagulant/antiplatelet medicines, which inhibit blood clotting. Because honeysuckle slows blood clotting, it may increase the risk of bruising and bleeding when used with other slow-clotting medications. So before you start using it, talk to your doctor.

Last Thoughts

  • Is honeysuckle a delicacy? Check a plant guide to see whether honeysuckles in your area are safe to use. Lonicera japonica, Lonicera periclymenum, and Lonicera ciliosa are some edible variants.
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners often use lonicera japonica to remove heat and toxins from the body.
  • In studies, honeysuckles have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, immune-boosting, antiviral, and anti-tumor properties.
  • Upper respiratory tract infections such as colds, the flu, and pneumonia, as well as other viral and bacterial infections, digestive disorders such as pain and inflammation of the small intestine (enteritis), headaches, and fever, urinary disorders, diabetes, and arthritis, are all known to be treated with honeysuckles.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to grow honeysuckle?

A: It is best to place honeysuckle in a suitable location where it will get plenty of sunlight. If you have enough room, plant honeysuckle on its own or near trees so that the leaves can provide shade for the shrub during hot weather periods. Honeysuckle needs full sun to grow well and avoid problems with overwintering diseases like black spots.

What are the benefits of the honey suckle plant?

A: Honeydews are a type of melon that is eaten raw or used in salads. They may be sprinkled with sugar and lemon to make them more palatable.

Is honeysuckle easy to grow?

A: Honeysuckle is a perennial flowering shrub that can grow to five feet high. Its commonly known for its fragrant white flowers. Its leaves are dark green and divided into three parts, each with fine hairs on the underside of it

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The information on this website has not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration or any other medical body. We do not aim to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. Information is shared for educational purposes only. You must consult your doctor before acting on any content on this website, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition.

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