Honey is a sweet food, which is healthier than table sugars. It is a natural sugar made by honeybees using nectar from the flowers. Cave paintings suggest human beings collected honey from honeycombs roughly 8000 years ago and the goodness of honey has been known and used in food and as medicine for at least 4000 years.
Honey is loaded with powerful antioxidants with antiseptic and antibacterial properties. It is not just to spread on bread toasts in the morning breakfast. Apart from its nutritive food value, honey is extensively used for its medicinal properties in alternate medicine. Studies about honey have revealed that honey has powerful anti-bacterial activity on a wide span of bacteria. The low water content and the osmotic property make honey an excellent anti-bacterial natural product.
The nutritive values of honey are as follows:
|Constituents||Nutritional value per 100g|
|Energy||304 kilo Calories|
|Dietary fibers||0.2 grams|
|Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)||0.038 milligrams|
|Niacin (Vitamin B3)||0.024 milligram|
|Folate (Vitamin B9)||2 microgram|
|Vitamin C||0.5 milligram|
Minerals present in honey are:
|Minerals||Amount in per 339 grams (1 cup)|
Honey is known for various amazing benefits. It has been widely used in a variety of products from sweet confectioneries to cosmetics.
Some of the benefits of honey are mentioned below:
1. Honey and Cinnamon: A Perfect Combination
Honey and cinnamon have been curing many diseases and infections since ancient times. Traditional societies have mixed honey and cinnamon from time immemorial to cure people from common cold, sore throat and skin infections. This practice is still followed by alternate medicine practitioners who use it to cure infertility in men and women. The combination of honey and cinnamon cures arthritis pain, cholesterol, hair fall and gastric problems. It also clears stomach ulcers and helps digest the heaviest meals. The most common use of honey and cinnamon is to cure cold and sore throat. Studies show that applying honey and cinnamon on your skin cures pimples and acne.
2. Honey and Immunity
Studies show that honey is an excellent remedy for improving your immunity against allergies and asthma. Honey contains floral flavonoids. When the honey is ingested, they immediately increase the antioxidant levels within the cells of the body and decrease the capillary permeability and fragility. Honey has also shown anti-cancer and anti-tumor properties preventing the risks of cancer in humans. Research by students at the Xavier University in New Orleans showed positive result of local honey and its allergy curing properties. The results say that honey acts as a vaccine for those who are allergic to pollen grains. Honey contains the same kind of pollen grains that cause this allergy. By consuming honey, we make the body accustomed to these pollen grains decrease the chance of the immune response to them like release of histamines. Local honey is said to be the best kind against allergies.
3. Honey and Stamina
Honey helps build stamina in athletes. When athletes take honey drinks before and after important athletic events, it replaces all the carbohydrates and minerals spent during the workout or in extreme conditions. While we are going through workouts, our body sweats and we lose minerals. Honey contains a good amount of all the important minerals and replaces them in the body. It is like an energy drink for the sportsmen and athletes and helps them in muscle building.
4. Honey and Weight Loss
Honey is a natural sweetener that contains 22 amino acids including a variety of minerals, which are important for metabolism and therefore helpful in preventing obesity. Lemon juice with a little honey early morning is believed to be the effective anti-cellulite treatment. This is an effective remedy to speed up shedding pounds from your body. Again, honey and cinnamon is another powerful remedy for effective weight loss. For people who love binge eating, honey can be taken as an effective remedy for digestion later on.
5. Honey and Cosmetics
Honey is widely used in many types of cosmetics like lip balm, face creams and shower gels. The reason behind this is because honey does not spoil due to its high sugar content. It has 50% more density than water. The osmotic property of honey attributes to its anti-bacterial property. Honey is a thick liquid that acts as a perfect skin and hair conditioner. It brings smoothness to the skin and hair. Hence, is used in cosmetics and shampoos.
6. Honey and Antiseptic Properties
Generally in hospitals, doctors prefer Hydrogen peroxide to clean wounds so they heal quickly. The same chemical is present in honey in very good amounts. It is released by diluting honey in water or body fluids. When it is applied on the open wounds, especially burn wounds, the glucose present in honey dilutes gradually releasing Hydrogen peroxide. And due to its viscous constituency, honey prevents wounds from sticking to the dressing and there are little or no scars after healing.