Sweet Benefits of Honey and How to Use It
Discover the many advantages of the natural sweetener for health, nutrition, and beauty
From the LifeMinute.TV Team
August 19, 2023
National Honey Bee Day is August 19. Learn the buzz surrounding the benefits of honey and how to incorporate it into your life.
Did You Know
There are more than 300 different types of honey. Raw honey comes directly from the hive, retaining its distinct flavor, and likely has the most antioxidants; pasteurized honey has been processed to eliminate imperfections and improve its shelf life. Its color depends on what kind of plant the bees who made it took the nectar from. Light-colored honey tends to be milder in flavor than dark varieties. Store all types in a location that is cool and away from sunlight.
Stimulates Wound Healing
Honey has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, which can kill pathogens that cause infection. Medical-grade Manuka honey may treat minor burns and scratches and provide a protective layer to prevent further infection.
Eases a Sore Throat
The beneficial enzymes, nutrients, and minerals in honey have made it a home remedy for coughs. Research shows it can improve the symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections, including cough, nasal congestion, sneezing, and sore throat in adults compared to usual OTC medicines. Take a spoonful of honey, like Tupelo. Or mix up to two teaspoons in a glass with warm water and lemon or herbal tea and drink it up.
The high flavonoids and phenolic acids in raw honey may provide cognitive benefits. Research indicates these polyphenol plant compounds could counter inflammation in the hippocampus, the part of the brain involved in spatial memory.
Current research suggests that certain kinds of honey can reduce infection-causing bacteria in the gut. And it may simultaneously stimulate the growth of potentially beneficial species. Try drizzling raw Manuka or Acacia honey sparingly into your morning yogurt.
Reduces Total Cholesterol
Antioxidants in honey could assist in improving cholesterol levels, which may help decrease the risk of heart disease. But it should be treated like all added sugars – in moderation. The American Heart Association recommends that women consume no more than roughly six teaspoons daily of added sugar and men no more than about nine teaspoons.
Drop the “liquid gold” (like the Clover variety) in coffee-based drinks and use Buckwheat (a darker variety with tons of antioxidants) in mouth-watering marinades and dressings to baste veggies and meat. Drizzle Acacia in a fruit salad or on oatmeal, and substitute sugar for Orange Blossom in a cake or cookie recipe. Replace equal parts of sugar with certain varieties of honey in some recipes. For others, for every 1 cup of sugar, substitute about 1/2 to 2/3 cup of honey. Since honey is about 20 percent water, you should also reduce the total amount of liquids in the recipe to counter the additional liquid from the honey.
Naturally exfoliating and antibacterial, honey can effectively cleanse and remove dry skin and dirt that can clog pores. To use, wash your face and body as usual, then (do a patch test before to ensure no allergic reaction) apply Manuka honey or another variety of unpasteurized, raw honey with water. Leave it on your skin for a few minutes before rinsing off.
Honey has skin-smoothing benefits thanks to its amino acids and antioxidants, specifically darker varieties. Dissolve one cup in hot water before adding it to your bath water so it more evenly distributes. Add milk to the honey for added softness and hydration. The humectant properties of honey make it a natural moisturizer for your skin, soothing inflammation too. To make a homemade body moisturizer, mix it with coconut oil.