Honey, that delicious nectar that bees make, is an incredibly beneficial substance. This mixture of sugar, enzymes, minerals, vitamins and amino acids is very different from any other sweetener on the planet. Let's see why.
- 1 Properties of honey
- 2 Benefits of honey for the body
- 3 Benefits of honey for the mind
There are documents that describe as already the Greeks, the Romans and the Egyptians used the healing properties of honey. Although other animals (besides humans) benefit from their qualities and their delicious flavor for much longer, such as bears, badgers and others.
People have been consuming honey for its flavor, in addition to using it for its antibacterial and antifungal properties since ancient times. In fact, even in the Bible it is collected as King Solomon said: "My son, eat honey, because it is good."
Honey is undoubtedly an ancient product that has won the hearts of many over time.
Honey is sweet because it is rich in fructose, therefore, although it should be consumed in moderation, it is much more beneficial than any other refined sugar.
In its basic composition, a tablespoon of honey contains approximately 64 calories and has no fat or cholesterol. It includes vitamins, traces of enzymes, amino acids and minerals such as calcium, iron, sodium chlorine, magnesium, phosphate and potassium.
Due to its inclination towards the acidic PH level (3.2 to 4.5), It helps reduce the growth of bacteria and has antioxidant properties They help us eliminate some free radicals.
It is perhaps one of the best sweeteners on the planet!
Benefits of honey for the body
1. It fills us with energy
As we already know honey is an excellent source of totally natural energy, with only 17 grams of carbohydrates per tablespoon. This unprocessed natural sugar (fructose and glucose) penetrates directly into the bloodstream and can provide us with energy quickly. The increase in blood sugar acts as a short-term energy source, but also it gives us strength to resist long-term physical exertion. And as we know, if we feel well physically, we also do it mentally, both factors walk hand in hand.
2. Treat wounds and burns
Honey is a natural antibiotic that can act both internally and externally. In fact, honey was used as a treatment against infections for many years until the invention of penicillin in the early twentieth century.
The reason is that honey releases hydrogen peroxide through an enzymatic process, which explains its general antiseptic qualities. It can be used as a conventional treatment for wounds and burns as it favors the disinfection of wounds and sores of the main species of bacteria, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). In a study published in the British Journal of Surgery in 2005, it showed that the majority of patients who suffered wounds and leg ulcers showed a marked improvement after receiving topical applications of honey.
3. Calm the cough
Honey is used as a natural cure for the cold. The World Health Organization (WHO) lists honey as a demulcent, which is a substance that relieves irritation of the mouth or throat by forming a protective film.
Studies show that honey works as well as dextromethorphan, a common ingredient in cough medicines, to soothe a cough and sleep-related difficulties due to upper respiratory tract infections in children. Thus, a persistent cough that does not go away can be remedied with a couple of teaspoons of honey, according to a 2012 study published in the journal Pediatrics. It explains how children between 1 and 5 years of age with a night cough due to colds cough less frequently when they received two teaspoons of honey 30 minutes before bedtime.
The thick consistency of the golden liquid helps cover the throat, it is also believed that the sweet taste triggers the nerve endings to protect the throat from the incessant cough.
4. Relieves allergies
The anti-inflammatory effects of honey and its ability to calm a cough have led to the belief that it can also reduce the symptoms of seasonal allergies. Although there are no clinical studies to prove its effectiveness, it is believed that honey acts as a “natural vaccine.” Honey contains pollen spores collected by bees from local plants, so with its consumption introduces a small amount of allergen in the body. Theoretically, this can activate our immune system and over time you can build up your natural immunity against him.
The usual recommendation is to take approximately one teaspoon of honey produced locally a day, starting a few months before the pollen season, to allow our system to generate immunity. And the key here is local.
This only works if we consume pollen honey from local plants to which we may be allergic. Honey from other places simply won't work. While research on this shows conflicting results, one study found that, during the birch pollen season, compared to the control group, patients who used birch pollen honey experienced:
- 60% reduction in symptoms
- Twice asymptomatic days
- 70% fewer days with severe symptoms
- A 50% decrease in the use of antihistamines
Interestingly, there were few differences between the two honey groups (those who took honey of other types versus those who took honey that contained birch pollen). However, the birch pollen honey group used less histamines than those who consumed another type of honey. The authors concluded that "Patients who consumed birch pollen honey pre-seasonally had significantly better control of their symptoms than those with conventional medication only, and had marginally better control compared to those in regular honey. The results should be considered. preliminary, but indicate that birch pollen honey could serve as a complementary therapy for birch pollen allergy. "
5. Treatment against dandruff
Honey diluted with a little warm water seems significantly improve seborrheic dermatitis, which is a scalp condition that causes dandruff and itching.
A 2001 study published in the European Journal of Medical Research found that applying honey diluted with 10% warm water to problem areas and leaving it in contact for three hours before rinsing, caused a rash relief and did not increase in one week. The skin lesions healed in two weeks and the patients even showed an improvement in hair loss. The patients did not relapse even after six months of use.
6. Help relieve herpes
Honey can help reduce herpes symptoms by the following topical benefits:
- Extract fluid from the wound.
- The high sugar content reduces or even suppresses the growth of microorganisms.
- Worker bees secrete an enzyme (glucose oxidase) in the nectar, which then releases low levels of hydrogen peroxide when honey comes in contact with the wound, cleaning the wound.
If you suffer from herpes outbreaks, try putting honey to see if you get some relief and if the sores heal faster.
Honey can be a safe and economical healing agent that will surely save you spending large sums of money on prescription or over-the-counter medications that often come with side effects or toxic ingredients.
Benefits of honey for the mind
Honey contains antioxidants that can help prevent damage and neuronal loss in the brain. A study published in Menopause in 2011 found that a daily tablespoon of honey can stimulate the memory of postmenopausal women, which serves as an alternative therapy to keep the intellectual decline related to hormones at bay.
Adding a teaspoon of honey to a cup of tea every day is an easy and refreshing way to delay neuronal aging.
Honey also helps the brain absorb calcium, which in turn helps maintain memory.
Taking care of your brain through the consumption of proper nutrition may decrease our chances of suffering from dementia in the future.
Help you sleep better
The components of honey also make it a great ally of the nervous system, since they have calming power and favor restful sleep.
Honey can be a great help during sleepless nights. Like sugar, honey has the power to cause a increase in insulin and release serotonin, a neurotransmitter that improves mood and emotional well-being. Subsequently, the body convert serotonin to melatonin, a chemical compound that regulates the duration and quality of sleep.
In addition, honey too It contains several amino acids, including tryptophan that is commonly associated with our level of happiness. Thus, the tryptophan of honey passes to our brain, where it becomes serotonin again and then melatonin, which is the hormone is responsible for regulating the cycles of sleep and wakefulness.