8 Reasons To Put Your Money on HoneyLuke Coutinho
Thick, golden, and sticky, it is the fruit of the hard labor of honey bees who gather nectar from flower to flower. Ancient texts and poems not only sing praise and love songs of this golden liquid’s sweetness but also laud its highly medicinal properties. It is nature’s medicine in its purest form. Honey has been used for decades for treatment, healing, religious ceremonies, and even as an aphrodisiac! Let’s dive into some of its top benefits.
What is the composition of honey?
A supersaturated solution of sugars its most abundant components include
- Fructose (38%)
- Glucose (31%)
What are the other minor components of honey?
- Free amino acids (proline, glutamic acid, aspartic acid, glutamine, histidine, glycine, threonine, β-alanine, arginine, α-alanine, valine, methionine, cysteine, isoleucine, leucine, tryptophan, phenylalanine, ornithine, lysine, serine, asparagine, and so on)
What are some of the amazing benefits of raw honey?
It is antibacterial
It works as a powerful antibacterial food. Its power is often compared to that of antibiotics. However, honey works differently than antibiotics which in their honest attempt to get rid of bad bacteria, sometimes wipe out good ones, destroy the bacteria’s cell wall, or inhibit intracellular metabolic pathways.
- Honey draws moisture out of the environment and strikes down bacteria by dehydrating them. The sugar content of honey is also high enough to hinder the growth of microbes, but the sugar content alone is not the sole reason for honey’s antibacterial properties.
- The pH of honey is between 3.2 and 4.5. This acidity is low enough to inhibit the growth of most microorganisms.
- Did you know honey also contains hydrogen peroxide? It is produced mainly during glucose oxidation catalyzed by the bee enzyme, glucose oxidase which makes it highly antibacterial.
- Its antimicrobial properties can also be attributed to the presence of other minor non-peroxide compounds such as polyphenols and a particular protein, defensin-1.
Fun Fact: Honey is capable of exerting an antibacterial effect on several species of bacteria. Studies reveal that diluted honey can be effective in striking down bacteria like E. coli, proteus species, and streptococcus, enterococcus faecalis which cause urinary tract infections.
It is anti-inflammatory
Struggling with inflammation? Add honey to your lifestyle. It can help ease pain and lowers inflammation.
Studies reveal that:
- Lesions treated with honey show less swelling, and inflammation, and improved wound healing.
- Honey helps diminish scars and stimulates tissue regeneration.
- Honey has also been reported to treat dandruff, eczema, and psoriasis rashes.
It promotes wound healing
Honey has been used since ancient civilizations for wound healing. This includes open, internal, and external wounds in case of surgeries and post-surgery recovery.
FUN FACT: Did you know that the Russians used honey in World War I to prevent wound infection and accelerate healing? And the Germans combined cod liver oil and honey to treat ulcers, burns, fistulas, and boils?
Research points out that honey is effective in treating a range of wounds:
- Bed sores
- Chilblains (small itchy swellings due to cold temperatures),
- Burst abdomen
- Cracked nipples
- Diabetic ulcers
- Traumatic wounds
- Cervical, varicose, and sickle cell ulcers
- Septic wounds
- Surgical wounds, and so on.
What does science say?
- Applying honey topically, helps facilitate healing of infected deep surgical wounds that do not respond to conventional therapies such as antibiotics and antiseptics.
- Honey can be used on skin grafts and infected skin graft donor sites successfully.
- Honey dressing sterilizes the wound, reduces pain in case of burns, and accelerates healing.
- Studies show that in Fournier’s gangrene (which is a life-threatening bacterial infection of the perineum, scrotum, or penis), the use of honey showed rapid improvement with decreased oedema and discharge, rapid regeneration, and little or no scarring.
- Honey is also used to treat ulcers or wounds after radical surgeries for breast cancer, varicose veins, and vulvar cancer.
- Studies also point out that in patients with postoperative wound infections following cesarean section or hysterectomies, topical honey application helps faster eradication of bacterial infections, reduces antibiotic use and hospital stay, accelerates wound healing, and results in minimal scar formation.
A powerful remedy: A mixture of plain raw honey with organic turmeric works as a wonderful remedy for wound healing.
Are you struggling with gastrointestinal issues? Honey could provide relief.
- Honey can be effective when orally consumed for digestive issues like gastritis and stomach ulcers.
- Honey helps repair damaged intestinal linings, stimulates the growth of new tissues, and works as an anti-inflammatory agent.
- It is also beneficial for bacterial stomach infections like diarrhea and gastroenteritis.
- H.Pylori bacteria is super sensitive to honey due to its hydrogen peroxide content.
- Honey can also aid peptic ulcers by protecting the mucous membranes from lesions.
For fungal infections
- While pure honey is linked with inhibiting fungal growth, diluted honey is effective in inhibiting toxin production.
- Honey effectively strikes down candida overgrowth that most people today struggle with. Candida is a yeast/fungus that lives on your skin and inside the mouth, throat, gut, and vagina. While it usually doesn’t create issues, an overgrowth can be a breeding ground for various health and lifestyle conditions.
- Honey is also effective in treating ringworm and Athlete’s foot to curb the growth of the fungus.
- The topical application of honey is also considered effective in treating seborrheic dermatitis, dandruff, and itchy/scaly scalp issues.
It is antiviral
- In addition to antibacterial and antifungal effects, natural honey has antiviral properties.
- It is safe and effective in managing lesions that sprout due to labial and genital herpes.
- It is known to inhibit the activity of the rubella virus.
- It also has an anti-influenza activity. It may explain why most home remedies like concoctions and kadhas that our parents and grandparents gave us included honey.
For eye health
- Did you know honey across the globe for eye conditions like blepharitis, keratitis, conjunctivitis, corneal injuries, and chemical and thermal burns to the eyes?
- Honey application for conjunctivitis may help reduce redness, swelling, and pus discharge and eradicate bacteria.
For cardiovascular diseases
- Honey contains antioxidants like Vitamin C, flavonoids, and polyphenols which are highly anti-inflammatory and can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
- A study shows that using 70 g of natural honey in overweight individuals for 30 days helped reduce total cholesterol, LDL-C, and CRP with no increase in body weight.
- Another study pointed out that honey may help lower blood pressure, improve blood fat levels, regulate your heartbeat, and prevent the death of healthy cells. But more studies are required to back this.
For brain health
- Honey helps reduce oxidative stress and has neuroprotective properties.
- It is also effective in improving memory and learning.
- It can help slow down cognitive decline associated with aging and reduce anxiety.
- Did you know acacia honey is considered a therapeutic agent in managing Alzheimer’s?
- Honey is scientifically documented for its antiproliferative, antitumor, antimetastatic, and anticancer properties.
- It is highly cytotoxic against tumor or cancer cells, while it is non-cytotoxic to normal cells. What does it mean? It can strike down cancer/tumor cells without affecting your healthy cells.
- Honey is reported to inhibit cell proliferation, induce apoptosis, and arrest cell cycle in many forms of cancer including endometrial cancer cells, renal cell carcinoma, skin cancer cells, cervical cancer cell lines, human non-small cell lung cancer cells, mouth cancer cells (oral squamous cell carcinoma), and bone cancer cells (osteosarcoma).
Different types of honey are known to show different anti-cancer effects.
- Greek thyme, pine, and fir honey extracts are known to modulate the estrogenic activity and cell viability of breast cancer cells.
- Tualang honey has also been shown to be antiproliferative against breast cancer, cervical cancer, and leukemia. A study found that the anti-cancer effect of tualang honey on breast cancer cells was similar to that of tamoxifen.
- Gelam honey is selectively cytotoxic to liver cancer cells.
- Gelam and Nenas monofloral honey inhibited the proliferation of colon cancer cells.
- Thyme honey has been tested for its antiproliferative effects in breast cancer, prostate cancer, and endometrial cancer.
- Cassia honey showed moderate cytotoxic activity against colon cancer and breast cancer.
- Citrus honey exhibited the highest cytotoxic activity against breast cancer.
Ziziphus honey showed potent efficiency against colon, liver, and breast cancer.
- Manuka honey was shown to induce apoptosis in colorectal carcinoma and human breast cancer cells in vitro.
Pointers to keep in mind when it comes to honey
All the benefits of honey go to waste if the quality is substandard and the processing method is incorrect. It doesn’t matter if honey is organic. The live enzymes and antioxidants that are extremely beneficial for health are dead when the honey is heated and pasteurized.
Today most honey available in the market will wreck your blood sugar level and pile on baby fat.
How to identify good quality honey?
Look for terms like:
Never heat or boil honey. Subjecting it to heart denatures it and kills all the beneficial enzymes responsible for its numerous health benefits. Don’t add it to hot tea, water or any other beverages. Add it only when the beverage is lukewarm.
Disclaimer: DO NOT administer raw honey to kids under the age of 1 as it can be toxic for them.
A few ways to incorporate honey in your lifestyle.
A super morning concoction for immunity, nausea, and digestion
We all know that drinking warm lemon water first thing in the morning helps flush the digestive system and rehydrates the body. Taking the regular lemon water a step forward, check out this lemon honey water infused with ginger slices or juice. So whether you are looking to give your immunity a boost, alleviate nausea or morning sickness, stimulate digestion, or get that natural skin glow, this morning concoction has got you covered. Loaded with Vitamin C, this refreshing drink helps maintain your electrolyte balance and regulates bowel movement.
Common cold? cough? congestion? flu? Try these easy concoctions that use honey along with other potent ingredients for relief.
Ginger, honey, lemon, turmeric, and black pepper concoction
- Add a teaspoon of raw unpasteurized honey, a bit of grated ginger, and lemon juice to a cup of warm water.
- Add a pinch of turmeric to it. Add a dash of black pepper next to let the piperine increase the bioavailability of the curcumin in turmeric.
- Sip this liquid warm. It will soothe your throat lining, open your passages, and help your body fight the virus.
Ginger, garlic, and honey concoction
- Add a one-inch piece of mashed ginger to 2 cups of water.
- Add 2 to 3 smashed cloves of garlic exposed to air for about 5 to 10 seconds to activate the allicin. Boil it.
- Let the concoction simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat.
- Once it cools a little, add a teaspoon of raw unpasteurized honey.
- Sip slowly.
For radiant skin
Yogurt and honey face mask
- A perfect combination of plain yogurt and quality honey moisturizes and brightens your skin.
- Mix half a cup of yogurt with 2 tablespoons of honey. Apply the mask to your clean face evenly.
- Leave it on for 20-30 minutes and then wash it off.
Lemon and honey mask
- Take 1 tsp lemon juice,1 tsp raw organic honey, and a pinch of turmeric.
- Mix it well and apply it to the skin. Leave it for 10-15 minutes and wash it off.
Honey is used as a natural skin remedy. It helps balance the skin microbiome, prevents and manages acne, speeds healing, reduces blemishes, is anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antibacterial and works as a natural exfoliator, and sheds dead skin cells.
A Middle Eastern remedy to arrest hair fall
One of the best solutions that people in the Middle East use for their hair is a combination of olive oil, cinnamon powder, and pure honey.
- Apply a mixture of these ingredients onto your scalp.
- Leave it on for three to four hours and then wash it off you.
- Do this about three or four times a week for at least two to three months. It is considered to be effective in arresting hair fall.
- Always do a patch test to check if it suits you. Avoid it if you experience any irritation. Make an informed choice.
For improved sex drive, try this Natural Aphrodisiac Mix
- 1/2 tsp fenugreek or methi powder
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
- 3 to 5 pure saffron strands
- 2 cloves
- 1/2 to 1 tbsp raw and unpasteurized honey
- Boil all the above ingredients in 2 cups of water or a cup of pure hormone-free Indian cow (desi) milk.
- Add 1/2 to 1 tbsp raw and unpasteurized honey.
- Sip slowly as a bedtime drink.
The ingredients in this concoction are natural aphrodisiacs that may improve your sex drive, stamina, and energy levels. Have this an hour or two before bedtime. Do this for a couple of days. Since it is natural, it takes time to get into your system and help you. But remember, this will never work alone. Address your nutrition, stress levels, anxiety, movement, and sleep deprivation, too.
Disclaimer: Those under specific medications or treatments must discuss them with their healthcare expert before consuming this concoction.
ALSO WATCH THIS
From a pimple to cancer, our You Care Wellness Program helps you find a way
Talk to our integrative team of experts today
Leave a Reply