The Many Health Benefits of Raw Honey
Contributing Writers for Wake Up World
Some people refer to it as “liquid gold”, but most of us understand it as honey. The substance we are specifically referring to is raw honey – honey in its purest form; honey that has not been filtered, strained or heated above 115 degrees Fahrenheit.
Many of the commercial varieties we find lined in our conventional grocery store shelves have been so processed that many (if not all) of the beneficial enzymes, nutrients and antioxidants have been completely destroyed. Used for nearly 2500 years, this substance contains many important nutritional components for our body and mind. In order to reap the benefits of honey, we must only consume honey that is raw or unpasteurized. Honey is becoming increasingly recognized not for its amazing taste, but rather its medicinal properties. Its application dates back many years; used in many of the traditional medicines of the world, including Ayurveda.
Today, honey is slowly being integrated into modern medicine as science studies are beginning to see that honey is an excellent topical application for healing wounds. Honey is valued and loved worldwide not only because of its taste, but because of the health benefits it provides us. Lets delve deeper into the amazing health benefits honey has to offer.
Honey is loaded with many essential vitamins and minerals. Vitamins such as B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 as well as vitamin C are found in honey. It also contains minerals like magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium chlorine, calcium, copper, iron, manganese, sulphur, zinc and phosphate.
Main Health Benefits
Carbohydrates in the form of glucose and fructose supply the body and mind with energy which can boost endurance, and reduce muscle fatigue. Many athletes use this wonderful food for an instant as well as a sustained energy source to lift them through their training. In sports and endurance, honey can provide 17 grams of carbohydrates per tablespoon, and can be an inexpensive alternative to commercial sports gels.
Excellent Source of Antioxidants
Honey not only has a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals, but it also contains the flavonoid pinocembrin which is unique to honey. Pinostrobin supports and promotes healthy enzyme activity.
Supports Good Bacteria
Honey supports Bifidobacteria – present in the gastrointestinal tract – which is essential for efficient digestion and good health. Honey contains pre/pro biotics that help the growth and activity of Bifidobacteria because it is an alkaline-forming food, and is similar to ingredients found in fruits. It doesn’t ferment in the stomach and it can be used to counteract indigestion.
Antibacterial and Anti-fungal Properties
Based on these properties honey can treat allergies by promoting a strong immune system, and has powerful anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties that makes it an excellent option to treat wounds with. It has antibacterial properties due to its acidic nature and enzymically produced hydrogen peroxide. Constant use of honey strengthens the white blood corpuscles to fight bacterial and viral diseases.
Part of the aging process is related to the slow depletion of enzymes in the body. Raw honey is one of the few foods to help slow the depletion of enzymes through the ingestion of amylase. Amylase is the enzyme that breaks down sugars and carbohydrates. It can restore damaged skin to give a softer, younger look.
- Honey is a great aid in relieving morning sickness;
- Honey is good for sore throats, laryngitis and pharyngitis;
- Raw honey can be used as a medication for issues related to male impotence and female infertility;
- A salve made of honey can be applied to eczema, canker sores or bleeding gums.
- Calcium absorption and hemoglobin count can be increased by raw honey to prevent anemia.
- Raw honey may also lower total cholesterol while increasing HDL(good) cholesterol.
- Honey acts as a sedative and is very useful in bed wetting disorders.
- Can help treat minor acne by attacking the bacteria that cause outbreaks while moisturizing the skin to aid in rejuvenation.
Honey may contain Clostridium botulinum spores and toxins that can cause infant botulism. As such, it is recommended that children under the age of one should not consume honey because their intestinal tract is not mature enough to inhibit the growth of Clostridium botulinum.
Healers from around the world have used honey for centuries for many healing procedures. When shopping for raw honey it is of greatest benefit to buy local and organic. This will support local farmers who practice organic farming where the honey is harvested with care. The amazing health benefits have been known by healers for centuries. According to PubMed, there have been over 4,357 medical studies on healing effects of honey; moreover, 1,194 of these studies relating to honey as a treatment, and 132 of these studies were relating to the antioxidants in honey.