HONEY – BENEFITS AND ITS USES

shirtless man drinking honey from a jar

Honey, the first and most widespread sweetener used by man. Uses for honey are as old as written history and presumably even older than that. Its recorded history dates back to 2100 B.C where its applications and benefits were already mentioned in Sumerian and Babylonian cuneiform writings or the sacred writings of Egypt and India. It was highly valued and often used as a form of tax payments or offering. But honey is not just a natural sweetener used in food and beverages, in old days it had its use in furniture polishes, medicinal purposes and even as cement ingredient.


How To Choose Honey ?

Before you buy honey you need to make sure it is a real honey. Unfortunately, about seventy-five percent of honey bought at the supermarkets isn’t real. It’s often artificially processed and usually deprived of real pollen, large amount of friendly bacteria usually found in it, and other nutritional values. Its production methods are not only taking from us all the goodness, but can also be very unhealthy for you. If you want to find out more, you should also read this article. Unfortunately, fake honey can be easily passed off as pure one, and spotting the difference between real and fake can be very hard. Although there are a few ways to figure out authenticity of honey, I would suggest finding a local bee keeper or farmer’s market where you will probably get a real product. Personally, I am very sceptical about big supermarkets honesty, its food sources, and production methods they use, so I’ll go and pick my food from my local, trusted farmers as often as possible.


Benefits & Uses

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Heals Cuts And Scrapes

It has been used as an antiseptic in the treatment of ulcers, burns and wounds. One Study in India revealed that 91 percent of honey treated burns in 104 first-degree burn patients, were infection free compared with only 7 percent receiving the conventional treatment. Some of the mechanisms that contribute to increased healing properties of honey, can be specific enzymes, antioxidants and flavonoids that function as antibacterial agents. A different study also confirmed honey’s antibacterial action against Staphylococcus aureus (a common bacteria that can cause infections, especially in open wounds), Escherichia coli and Candida albicans. Darker honeys, for example those extracted from buckwheat flowers or tupelo, contain a larger amount of antioxidants than other honeys. The thickness can also add additional protection against bacteria and dirt entering a wound. You can simply dab a little bit of honey onto your wound and cover with a bandage.

Helps Upper Respiratory Infections

Our grannies praised benefits of honey as an effective cough suppressant and immune system booster for centuries. But its not just a witchcraft. According to a new study, two ounces of honey a day reduces the length of the common cold by up two days. In the first of its kind trial, men and women were recruited within 24 hours of catching a cold. All 60 patients were given traditional drugs and decongestants but half of them were also given four tablespoons of honey every day. At the end of the study the researchers found a significantly quicker recovery in the honey group. Phenolic acid and flavonoids are thought to be main contributors to faster recoveries.

Improves Athletic Performance

We all know the importance of carbohydrate for an energy boost during intense training. Honey can be a healthy alternative to maltodextrin and all other refined sugars which are harmful to our health. Studies indicate that muscle recuperation and glycogen restoration is much higher in individuals consuming the honey-protein combination as opposed to those consuming artificially sweetened protein powders. Honey will also maintain optimal blood sugar levels during your training.

Diabetes & Cholesterol Control

In patients with type 2 diabetes, natural honey causes lower rise in blood sugar compering to other refined sugars. One study has shown natural honey to reduce total cholesterol count by 7%, triglycerides 2%, C-reactive protein 7%, homocysteine 6% (homocysteine and c-reactive proteinis are significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease) and blood sugar 6%. It also increased good cholesterol (HDL) by 2%.

Cosmetic Uses

Its use is not just restricted to healing and being a delicious, all-natural sweetener, it’s also a helpful tool in supporting a healthy body and glowing appearance. Honey helps to absorb and retain water on your hair and skin, and is very often used in shampoos, soaps and many other cosmetics. You can try a basic home made honey wash by mixing a blob of honey and three tablespoons of warm water, and rubbing the mixture gently into your skin.


Honey Facts

Bee

  • To make one pound of honey, bees must tap over two million of flowers and fly a distance equal to more than three times around the world.
  • An average bee will make only one-tenth of a teaspoon of honey during its entire life.
  • Drambuie, the famous Scottish liqueur is made with honey.
  • Honey never spoils! Honey that was found in Egypt by Archaeologists, dated back to ancient times and was still edible.
  • All honey will crystallize eventually, no matter what.
  • Honey has a lower glycemic index than sugar and it does not raise blood sugar levels as quickly.

WARNING!!! Giving honey to infants under the age of one, may cause infant botulism, a rare but serious gastrointestinal condition that can be life-threatening.



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