The Benefits of Honey
It has been known for generations as a healing tool, and recently been found to be more beneficial (in some cases) than antibiotics. Honey is very high in beneficial plant compounds and offers several health benefits. It is particularly useful if you use it instead of refined sugar, which is 100% empty calories, with absolutely no benefits to it at all.
When choosing honey though, find one that is 100% pure, and as high quality as you can get. There are different types, and different regions of honey, so make sure you find one that fits your needs.ypes, and different regions of honey, so make sure you find one that fits your needs.
Honey Contains Nutrients
Nutritionally, 1 tablespoon of honey (21 grams) contains 64 calories and 17 grams of sugar, including fructose, glucose, maltose, and sucrose, and contains virtually no fiber, fat, or protein.
It contains trace amounts of the recommended daily allowance of several vitamins and minerals, but you would need to consume many pounds to fulfill your daily requirements.
Where honey is beneficial is in its containing bioactive plant compounds and antioxidants. Darker honeys contain higher amounts of these compound types. High-quality honey contains many important antioxidants.
Antioxidants have many benefits, so the fact that honey has it is important.
The “Less Bad” Choice
Whether honey is better for diabetics is mixed. On one hand, it can reduce several risk factors for heart disease (common for people with diabetes). But on the other hand, a study found that it can increase blood sugar levels -- just not at the rate of refined sugar.
So, while honey has proven to be beneficial in some areas, it can also be a downfall in others, and therefore should be used moderately and consumed with caution.
Another concern is that some honey is diluted with plain syrup, making it even more dangerous for those with diabetes or concerns over high sugar intake. While it is illegal to do this in most countries, it is still a widespread problem that has not been eliminated yet.
Honey Bees Are Essential
Not only is honey an important item for our daily use, the bee is essential for pollination of our flowers and crops. It is estimated that one third of the food that we consume every day relies on the pollination of mainly bees.
Use Honey Topically
Honey used topically as both a wound care and burn care is widely known. The success rate of placing honey on an infection area of skin is staggering. Manuka honey is especially effective in treating burn wounds.
Putting honey on diabetic ulcers and herpes lesions has also proven effective as a course of treatment.
Always consult your doctor on the proper treatment, of course, but in the meantime, put some honey on a small wound or burn and see if it helps. It cannot hurt.
In several studies, honey was found to be a better cough suppressant than over-the-counter medication and did not have the side effects that most medications do.
How much and how to ingest honey is up for debate. Some people put it in warm water with lemon and drink it that way, while others take a spoonful right before bedtime to sleep better.
Remember that it is advised to not give honey to children under one year of age due to the risk of botulism.
While honey is a great alternative to refined sugar, and has many more benefits, you need to remember that it still contains a great deal of calories and sugar.
Make sure you choose a high-quality brand of honey, and if using it for allergies, that it is produced locally. (A teaspoon of honey a day for a year is said to help with allergies.)
Just remember: everything in moderation, even when using honey as a replacement to your typical sweetener.