The Wonderful Things About Honey
Packed with health benefits, honey is one of the oldest sweeteners on earth. Yet, you need to be picky about what honey you choose. For starters, ensure it is pure and raw. Raw honey is packed with vitamins, minerals and enzymes that are not present in refined honey. Darker honey has higher antioxidant levels, and monofloral honey (made from a single plant species) usually has the lowest glycaemic index (GI). For example, locust honey has a GI of 32, while commercial Clover honey, has the highest glycaemic index at 69 and should be avoided.
Top five uses of honey for health and wellbeing
Helps prevent cancer and heart disease
Honey contains flavonoids – antioxidants that help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease. It also possesses carcinogen-preventing and anti-tumour properties.
Anti-bacterial and anti-fungal
All honey is antibacterial because bees add an enzyme to it that makes hydrogen peroxide. This creates the perfect barrier against infection for wounds. The earliest recorded use of honey for medicinal use comes from Sumerian clay tablets, which say that honey was used in 30% of prescriptions. The ancient Egyptians also used medicinal honey to make ointments for skin and eye diseases. It is because of this property that honey treatment may help disorders like ulcers and bacterial gastroenteritis. It also removes free radicals from our body and improves our body immunity functioning.
Athletic performance Increases
Ancient Olympic athletes ate honey and dried figs to enhance their performance. According to findings presented at the annual Experimental Biology conference, honey delivers a significant performance boost to athletes during strenuous exercise. Modern studies have now verified this, proving that honey is a better option in maintaining glycogen levels and improving recovery time.
Balances the five elements
Honey has been used in Ayurvedic medicine in India for at least 5,000 years. It is believed to balance the three doshas that make up each individual – Vata, Pitta, Kapha. It improves eyesight, helps with weight loss, and can cure impotence, urinary tract disorders, bronchial asthma, diarrhoea and nausea.
Helps regulate blood sugar
Containing fructose, even though honey is a ‘sugar’, it is different from white sugar and artificial sweeteners. The combination of fructose and glucose contained in low GI honey actually helps the body to regulate blood sugar levels.