10 Surprising Health Benefits of Honey
Honey has healing properties which are known to cure many diseases. Ancient Ayurveda and Unani medicines have been utilizing health benefits of honey to heal ailments for centuries. Scientists of modern day accept effectiveness of honey in curing health related ailments and enhancing health in general.
Here are 10 surprising health benefits of honey you need to know, from boosting immunity to treating cough, helping with weight loss to clearer skin and more.
1. Aids Weight LossScientific research has shown that regular consumption of small amounts of raw honey could help you lose weight.
It is mostly raw honey that has most of the health benefits especially when it comes to losing weight. This is because it is believed that consumption of raw honey can stimulate certain hormones in the body that could suppress appetite.
2. Safer than SugarThere has been a lot said about the negative effects of white sugar on the body. Honey is a great substitute that is as sweet but also safe to consume. Though honey also includes simple sugars in its chemical makeup, it is quite different from white sugar in that it contains about 30% glucose and 40% fructose – two monosaccharide or simple sugars – with 20% other complex sugars. Honey also includes dextrin, a starchy fiber. This combination helps the body regulate blood sugar levels.
3. Prevents Cancer and Heart DiseaseHoney contains flavonoids, antioxidants which helps to reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease.
4. Strengthens The Immune SystemIts antioxidant and anti-bacterial properties can helps to improve overall immune function, keep you healthy, and fight disease.
5. Clearer SkinHoney is an excellent antioxidant, which means its regular consumption will cleanse your body of various toxins. In addition, its antibacterial properties will considerably improve the condition of your skin.
6. Natural Cough SuppressantHoney can be used as a natural cough remedy instead of over-the-counter cough suppressant. Honey draws water out of the inflamed tissues and helps relieve cough and sore throat. Simply add two to three teaspoon of honey to a cup of hot water or herbal tea to get some relief. Honey alone can also be used as an effective cough suppressant if you do not want to have it with your tea.
7. Heals Burns and WoundsThe healing powers of honey have been known for thousands of years. Due to its antifungal properties and antioxidants, it is ideal for treating burns and wounds.
8. Boosts Energy LevelsIf you need a quick energy boost, such as before or after a workout, natural honey is perfect. Vitamins in honey include B complex vitamins, essential for your body to produce energy.
9. Improves DigestionHoney has long been used to aid in digestion as it is rich in probiotic or ‘friendly’ bacteria. Its antiseptic properties help in relieving acidity in the stomach and alleviating digestion.
10. Promotes Quality SleepThe sugar contained in honey increases the level of insulin in the blood, which then releases serotonin. Serotonin is further transformed into melatonin, a hormone that promotes quality sleep.
PrecautionsConsumption of honey is safe for older kids and adults, but for infants, it is recommended to wait until at least one year of age.
Using large amounts of honey might increase blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes. Also, applying honey at dialysis exit sites may increase the danger of infection in people with diabetes.
The heating of honey should be avoided as the process generates a particular chemical compound called Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) that may damage the DNA.