The Health Benefits of Honey

Posted on August 05, 2014 | 0 comments
The Health Benefits of HoneyRaw honey is rich with healing antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. We get asked a lot about where our honey comes from because people want to know if it will help their allergies. If you ask WebMD, their answer is a flat-out "NO." The rational is that: "It's generally the pollen blowing in the wind (released by non-flowering trees, weeds, and grasses) that triggers springtime allergies, not the pollen in flowers carried by bees. So even local honey won’t have much, if any, of the type of pollen setting off your allergies." Another study, published in 2002 in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, showed no difference among allergy sufferers who ate local honey, commercially processed honey, or a honey-flavored placebo. So let's move on to the real benefits of Honey by way of this excellent summary we found in Mother Earth Living.

Honey also hosts a horde of antioxidants.. A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that the antioxidant activity of honey is comparable to that of many fruits and vegetables on a fresh-weight basis. And while you likely will not devour a cup of honey in lieu of broccoli, the golden liquid makes an antioxidant-rich alternative to sugar. Generally, the darker the honey, the higher its antioxidant content. Other factors that can influence antioxidant content, particularly within a species, include climate, soil, processing, handling and storage.

"Doctor--Bring the Honey!"

Honey’s wound-healing properties are among its most impressive medicinal qualities. A study published in the journal Burns found honey salve healed superficial burns more quickly and effectively than a standard treatment of silver sulfadiazine. Another study examined the therapeutic effects of honey applied to surgical incisions following Caesarean sections and abdominal hysterectomies. Compared with patients treated with a standard solution of iodine and alcohol, those treated with honey were infection-free in fewer days, had a reduced hospital stay and experienced accelerated wound healing with minimal scar formation.

Honey helps heal wounds in several ways. Its thickness provides a protective barrier against germs, and honey naturally absorbs fluids in wounds, helping to prevent the growth of bacteria and fungi. Raw honey also contains an enzyme called glucose oxidase. When the enzyme mixes with body fluids, it produces hydrogen peroxide and acts as a mild antiseptic.

No Refrigeration needed

Bear Foot Honey Farm, a third-generation family honey farm in Santa Rosa, California, offers these instructions for substituting honey for sugar in recipes on its website.   

Because of its high fructose content, honey has higher sweetening power than sugar, which means you can use less to achieve the desired sweetness. When using honey as an alternative to granulated sugar in recipes, begin by substituting honey for up to half of the sugar called for in the recipe. 

For baked goods, reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees to prevent overbrowning. For each cup of honey used, reduce the liquid called for by 1/4 cup and add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. 

For more on using honey and other natural sweeteners as an alternative to sugar, read the article “Smarter Sweets.”

Buy Local Honey!
Here's why!!! The health benefits of honey are largely determined by its quality. According to a recent Food Safety News report, a third or more of all the honey consumed in the United States is likely to have been smuggled in from China or India and may be tainted with illegal antibiotics and heavy metals. To ensure your honey isn’t tainted, buy from local sources. Visit Local Harvest, where you can search for honey by state, city or ZIP code.

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