Question

Dietary Supplements

What are the health benefits of honey?

A Answers (6)

  • AMehmet Oz, MD, Cardiology, answered
    Healing Honey
    Honey can heal ulcers, skin problems, and other ailments. Learn more about this topic in this video of Dr. Oz.


  • ASamantha Heller, RD, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
    Honey is beneficial because it has been used for centuries as a healing tonic and balm in folk medicine. It contains antioxidants that help protect cells. Used topically, honey is effective in wound dressings that are used to treat burns, wounds and infections. In July 2007, the Food and Drug Administration gave honey the nod and approved the use of honey-based wound dressings in the United States. The sugar content of honey keeps microorganisms from growing, and glucose oxidase produces hydrogen peroxide that provides direct antibacterial protection. Amazing what bees can do.
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  • AMichael T. Murray, Naturopathic Medicine, answered

    The health benefits of a particular honey depend on its processing as well as the quality of the flowers the bees utilize when collecting the pollen. Raw honey is honey that has not been pasteurized, clarified, or filtered, and this form typically retains more of the healthful phytochemicals lost to the standard processing of honey.

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  • ALindsey Duncan, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
    Honey is one of Mother Nature's most versatile foods. It not only serves as a delicious, all-natural sweetener, but it's a helpful tool in supporting a healthy body and glowing appearance. The health benefits of honey include:
    • Better athletic performance: Many athletes rely on carbohydrates for an energy boost during intense training. Studies have shown that the glucose found in honey, plus other natural sugars, can provide the same boost to athletes. Instead of consuming refined sugars and high fructose corn syrup, which is on my list as one of the worst things we can consume and is found in many sports drinks, opt for an all-natural boost of honey.
    • Improved sleep and relaxation: Honey can promote relaxation and help ease you to sleep at night. The natural sugar found in honey raises our insulin slightly and allows tryptophan, the compound famous for making us sleepy after eating turkey at Thanksgiving, to enter our brains more easily. Taking a spoonful of honey before bed can help you get restful sleep.
    • Fewer allergies: Taking a high-quality raw local honey for two months before allergy season can actually lessen your allergies. Bees carry the pollen that aggravates seasonal allergies, and some of that pollen becomes part of the honey. Consuming honey daily before allergy season can help your body grow accustomed to the pollen and immunize your body against it.
    • Healed cuts and scrapes: Honey has antibacterial properties that prevent infection in minor abrasions. Plus, its thickness will protect against bacteria and dirt entering a wound. Simply dab a little honey onto your cut and cover with a bandage.
    • Moisturizing skin: Honey not only attracts water but it helps absorb and retain it on hair and skin. Because of this, honey is added to countless shampoos, soaps and cosmetics. You can enjoy the moisturizing benefits of honey at home by stirring it up with milk for a facial, adding it to your bath water to soften skin, or mixing it with olive oil as a natural hair conditioner. You can even make your own moisturizing exfoliator: Just add sea salt or crushed oats to the honey and rub it on the body.
  • ADoreen Rodo, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered

    Honey has both glucose and fructose which is beneficial to athletes because the glucose is absorbed right away for instant energy and fructose is absorbed over time for a sustained energy. Honey also has antioxidant properties and antibacterial properties that help to prevent diseases and boosts immunity. 

  • AdotFIT answered
    A search of the Internet makes some pretty wild and broad claims on the benefits of honey; however, honey does appear to live up to many of them. Honey has natural antibacterial properties. Honey also promotes healing and shows antibacterial action by decreasing prostaglandin levels, elevating nitric oxide levels, and exerting prebiotic effects. Due to the mixture of environmental agents (pollen, bee saliva, etc.), it may also stimulate the immune system…sort of like a vaccine. Many people swear by honey and water with lemon to soothe the throat and quiet a cough. I would say there is no down side to drinking honey with warm water and there may be many upsides. Enjoy, but not too much…the calories can add up.
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