Honey has long been valued for its medicinal properties. This natural sugar was commonly used in ancient Greece and became widely available in the 16th century. Today, it’s considered a powerful cure for sore throat, common cold and flu, poor immunity, acne, gum disease, and even cancer. However, it’s quite high in calories and sugars, so it should be consumed in moderation.
Brief History of Honey
This superfood is as old as history itself. Rock paintings in Spain show honey seekers robbing a bee colony. In ancient times, people were using honey as a natural talisman. Archaeologists found traces of honey in clay vessels dating back 4,700–5,500 years. The ancient Egyptians were using this food for cooking as well as for embalming the dead or as a gift to their gods.
The first written evidence of honey dates back to 2100 BC. Legend says that Cupid, the god of love, used to dip his arrows in honey. This food was often used as a form of tribute, currency, or offering. According to Fundamentals of Chinese Medicine, honey enters the meridian channels of the lung, spleen, and large intestine, which helps relieve pain, constipation, toxic buildup, and mouth sores. Today, honey is touted as one of the healthiest and most nutritious foods on earth.
What Is Honey Good for?
Even though honey is just as high in calories as sugar, it contains more nutrients. Sugar provides no nutritional value. Honey, especially darker varieties, boasts large amounts of antioxidants that fight cancer and chronic diseases. These include flavonoids, phenols, organic acids, and other plant compounds. When consumed regularly, honey raises the antioxidant value of the blood, prevents stroke, and lowers the risk of heart disease. Its beneficial effects on eye health are backed up by science as well.
This superfood packs large amounts of vitamin C, which strengthens the immune system and wards off the flu. It also contains calcium and iron, leading to stronger bones and improved circulation. A study conducted on children has found that those who ate two teaspoons of honey at bedtime coughed less severely and less frequently than those who didn’t consumed this food.
Due to its antibacterial and antioxidant properties, honey enhances your body’s ability to fight infections and recover from illness. The antioxidants in this natural sugar have been shown to lower blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for cardiovascular problems.
Research also indicates that honey may reduce bad cholesterol and prevent atherosclerosis. Compared to sugar, it’s a safer option for diabetics. Honey can actually relieve diabetes symptoms by improving blood lipid profiles and fighting inflammation. Many people apply honey on the skin to accelerate wound healing and treat herpes lesions, hemorrhoids, or psoriasis. This natural cure has the ability to kill salmonella, E.coli, and other pathogens found in uncooked meat and eggs. It also contains prebiotics, which feed the good bacteria in your GI tract and boost digestive function.
It’s no doubt that honey can improve your health on every level. Its benefits are recognized by the medical community. Add a tablespoon to your daily coffee, tea, or smoothies, use it as a substitute for sugar, or make your own beauty products with honey.