Honey is often described as the purest form of food. Bedsides great taste there is innumerable benefits of honey for the human body.
Antioxidants are important in their ability to fight toxicity in the bloodstream and may help fight off harmful infections. So, it plays a important role in the prevention of cancer as well as heart disease. Honey contains antioxidants, which are non-nutritive agents that decrease the activity of cell-damaging free radicals linked with many chronic diseases. In particular, darker varieties of honey can contain large quantities of a particular antioxidant called flavonoid, the same agent found in red grapes that has been credited with leading to lower instances of heart disease among wine drinkers. Honey's antioxidants can also make cooked meat safer. When meat is cooked its fats release potentially dangerous free radicals, which can attack the body's cells. But Dr. Engeseth found that adding one teaspoonful [5g] of honey to 100g of meat before cooking helps block these free radicals, as well as improving the smell and taste of the meat.
Supports Blood Formation
Honey provides an important part of the energy needed by the body for blood formation. In addition, it helps in cleansing the blood. It has some positive effects in regulating and facilitating blood circulation. It also functions as a protection against capillary problems and arteriosclerosis.
Royden Brown in his book ‘Bee Hive Product Bible’ provides invaluable insight into the properties of bee products. He writes about the use of Honey to treat respiratory ailments, and relates to exhaustive research conducted in Bulgaria:
"We found Honey has bactericidal, anti-allergenic, anti-inflammatory and expectorant properties that insure the body an immunobiological defense and give it the capacity to regenerate its attacked cells".
One antioxidant in particular, pinocembrin, which is unique to honey, is currently being studied for its antibacterial properties. According to the research, honey's high sugar content slows bacterial growth by reducing the amount of water available to them. In addition, an enzyme secreted from the bee's mouth makes hydrogen peroxide, which acts as an antibacterial agent when diluted with water. Honey's acidity also has anti-bacterial properties. Thus, honey can be used for:
Helping in Healing Wounds
There are several factors that may account for honey's healing properties:
- Bacterial infections require water to thrive. The sugars in honey attract water, and may deprive the bacteria resulting in diminished activity from the virus.
- Bee pollen and propolis enzymes are present in even the purest of raw honey. These possess anti-viral and antibacterial properties that work from within the honey to sterilize wounds and assist healing.
- Glucose oxidase found in honey combineswith water and produces hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide has antiseptic properties.
Treatment of Diarrhea
Honey promotes the rehydration of the body and more quickly clears up the diarrhea and any vomiting and stomach upsets. The anti-bacterial properties of honey, both the peroxide and non-peroxide, are effective in the laboratory against MRSA strains of bacteria, which are notoriously resistant to antibiotics and are sometimes responsible for the closing of hospital wards.
Treatment of Ulcers
In Europe, honey has been used internally to help cure ulcers, particularly stomach ulcers. The advantage of honey is that it not only prevents infections from occurring, it actually accelerates skin healing.. Since the sugar in honey absorbs water it helps to trap some of the moisture so that the bacteria and other microbes can’t grow as easily as in other food.
Treatment of Sore Throat
Due to its natural anti-inflammatory effect, it will help to heal the wounds more quickly. It also has different phytochemicals--chemicals found in plants and different foods--that kill viruses, bacteria, and fungus making it a good substitute for wound dressings.
Many people think that because honey is sweet it's bad for your teeth, but research shows it actually help fights tooth decay.
Studies at the University if Chicago Dental School shows that compounds in honey, particularly the darker honeys, attack the bacteria, which can rot teeth.