Honey is a sweet fluid produced by honey bees from the bee pollen through a process of regurgitation and evaporation.There are more than 300 types of honey, differing in the source (blossoms) that bees use to collect pollen. From dandruff reducing to cough treating, honey has a wide spectre of health benefits. Honey Flower is derived from the nectar of flowers of plants and trees that are collected and processed in the body of the worker bees. Nectar is placed in the waxy cells where fermented and matured. Honey contains up to 75-79% fructose and glucose, 15-18% water. The remaining 10.3% are enzymes, minerals, cane sugar, organic acids, vitamins, tannin.
Apart from its seductive colour and flavour, honey has numerous proven superpowers. It has an unusual chemical composition which preserves it for an indefinite time (jars of a fully preserved honey had been found during excavations of early Egyptian tombs). Honey has a unique low moisture content, which prevents the growth of bacteria and microorganisms. In addition, bees add enzyme-glucose oxidase that produces hydrogen peroxide as a byproduct. Honey is known for its hygroscopic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory properties.
Content of honey :
Honey consists of glucose, fructose, vitamins, and minerals, such as niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium and zinc.
- Fructose: 38.2%
- Glucose: 31.3%
- Maltose: 7.1%
- Sucrose: 1.3%
- Water: 17.2%
- High sugars: 1.5%
- Ash: 0.2%
- Other / unspecified: 3.2%
Due to its low level of acid pH (between 3.2 and 4.5) the consumption of honey prevents the growth of bacteria, while its antioxidant ingredients help fight free radicals. The physical properties of honey vary depending on the specific flora used for its production, as well as its water content.
One tablespoon contains 64 calories. Honey is not suitable for children under 12 months, as it may contain bacteria that cause infant botulism.
Health benefits of honey:
Honey soothes cough
According to a study from 2007, including 139 children, buckwheat honey has a strong mitigating effect on nocturnal cough by soothing inflamed membranes and improves the quality of sleep. Another study, published in Pediatrics involving 270 children aged 1-5 years with night cough, found that kids who consume two tablespoons of honey 30 minutes before bedtime cough less in comparison with those which have consumed honey.
As honey is 125.9 times the viscosity of distilled water at 37 C (at body temperature), the honey can be beneficial in the prevention of GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease).
Ulcers and other gastrointestinal disorders
Recent studies have shown that consumption of honey can help diseases such as ulcers and bacterial gastroenteritis. There was a study in which honey was used in an oral rehydration in children and infants with gastroenteritis. The aim of the study was to both determine whether the honey can affect the duration of acute diarrhea and to assess the efficiency of the honey as a replacement for glucose in oral rehydration. It concluded that honey shortens the duration of bacterial diarrhea in infants and young children.
Wounds and burns
Honey also has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. It is applied to support the treatment of chronic wounds. Positive effects of honey in wound healing (topical treatment) have been reported. In any case, even if there is no improvement, we recommend you try this natural method without side effects before you turn to the help of antibiotics.
Topical application of honey has shown to be as effective as the conventional treatment with silver sulfadiazine. It is assumed that this is due to the combination of the effect of drying of simple sugars and antibacterial properties of honey.
For the treatment of burns and wounds, honey is applied directly or with a bandage that is normally replaced every 24 to 48 hours. When used directly, 15 ml to 30 ml of honey is applied every 12 to 48 hours covered with a sterile gauze or polyurethane bandage.
For beautiful skin and scalp and dandruff problemsIn a study among patients with chronic seborrheic dermatitis and dandruff, participants were asked to apply honey diluted with 10% hot water with which to treat the problem areas and leave it there for three hours before they rinse with warm water. All patients showed relief of itching and scaling disappearing within a week. Skin lesions completely healed within two weeks; patients showed improvement in hair loss. With continued treatment,applied once a week for six months, patients show no signs of relapse.
The antibacterial properties of honey have been particularly useful for the skin, and in combination with other active ingredients it may have a moisturizing and nourishing action.
Whether you spread it on your morning toast, do a face or hair mask or have spoonful of honey to sooth cough before bed, enjoy this tasty treat in reasonable quantities and make sure you support local beekeepers by buying honey with proven qualities and origin!