Honey has enormous health benefits when used in moderation–but not all honey is equal. Make the most of honey by buying local.
Honey has been used medicinally for thousands of years in both topical and internal use. It is used as a sugar substitute, a glaze on desserts and dishes, and as an additive to teas and other beverages. This natural sweetener also is loaded with health benefits you may not know about. But not all honeys are equal.
Why Local Honey?
Honey, unfortunately, is not always honey. The brands carried by many grocery stores have been ultra-filtered–meaning the honey has been watered down, heated up, and had the pollen filtered out. Why would anyone do this? Well, this technique was first created by the Chinese so that the source of the honey couldn’t be detected, as pollen is the only indicator. Technically, Chinese honey is illegal in the United States as it can contain illegal and harmful antibiotics, but without pollen to test, the FDA cannot trace the source of the honey.
Raw and local honey is pure, unfiltered, and still in possession of all the qualities that make honey healthy. It is pure and untampered, meaning you do not have to worry that the honey you are consuming contains undeclared harmful substances or has been processed into something unrecognizable. Local honey is made from local bees–which means that the bees are in their local habitat, producing honey from local plants and contributing to their local ecosystem’s balance, health, and biodiversity.
The Health Benefits of Honey
Honey can lower your blood pressure due to its antioxidant properties. Studies have shown reasonable and positive affects in both human and rats. This has the potential to positively affect cardiovascular disease, as blood pressure is a leading cause. The phenols and antioxidants are building blocks of heart health.
One study found that replacing sugar for honey caused a reduction in LDL cholesterol and even caused moderate weight loss.
Honey’s antioxidant properties are also responsible for its anti-inflammatory qualities.
Regular consumption of honey–especially as a table sugar replacement–has been consistently shown to lower triglycerides, which in turn can prevent diabetes by lowering insulin resistance.
Burns and Wounds
Using honey to heal burns, cuts, and scrapes dates as far back as Ancient Egypt. This can be attributed to honey’s antibacterial and antibiotic properties which prevent and treat infection. Honey has been shown in studies to have a marked positive effect on post-surgery infections, burns, and diabetic foot ulcers.
Cough and Sore Throat
One study found that honey was more effective in reducing children’s cough than two of the leading brands of cough syrup.
Honey’s health benefits listed above only apply to real and high-quality honey. In none of the above studies was commercial honey used. So if you want to improve your overall health and enjoy the benefits of honey, raw and local is most likely to give you those benefits.