The Wonderful World of Honey

The Wonderful World of Honey

honey

For at least 2700 years, honey has been used to treat a variety of ailments through topical application, but only recently have the antiseptic and antibacterial properties of honey been chemically explained.
In ancient times, Egyptians sacrificed honey by the tons to their river gods, Roman legions slathered honey on the wounds as a natural cure to promote healing, and medieval lords reserved honey for their private use. It’s told that the body of Alexander the Great was preserved and embalmed with honey.

As honey was then expensive and not all could afford it, its use in cooking was reserved only for the wealthy. And ancient myths and writings on alcoholic beverages throughout the world also contain references to mead, or honey wine, which is known as the world’s oldest fermented beverage.

The biblical history also contains honey facts biblical history also contains honey facts related to its benefits and goodness. Honey, a delicacy fit for the kings and queens!

When refined sugar made from sugar cane came along, it provided a relatively inexpensive alternative form of sweetening and began to displace honey for culinary use. The benefits of honey since then became more focused on its medicinal properties and its use in fine gourmet and confectionary.

Today, the word ‘honey” has gone beyond its association with its benefits as a food and has crept deep into many cultures and languages.

Honey contains copper, iron, silica, vitamin B, manganese, chlorine, calcium, potassium, sodium, phosphorous, aluminum and magnesium. Depending on the part of the world where the honey comes from, honey will vary in mineral content.

As an antimicrobial agent, honey may have the potential for treating a variety of ailments. One New Zealand researcher says a particular type of honey, manuka honey, may be useful in treating MRSA infections. Antibacterial properties of honey are the result of the low water activity causing osmosis, hydrogen peroxide effect, and high acidity. Honey may also be used to alleviate the effects of a sore throat, by mixing with lemon juice and consumed. The mixture coats the throat alleviating discomfort, and the antibacterial, antiseptic properties are good for the throat as well.

Three Key Valuable Honey Properties
Be pleasantly surprised by these amazing honey properties — antimicrobial, antioxidant, and hygroscopic which all make honey a popular food as well as a medicine.

1. Honey is Hygroscopic
Honey has a hygroscopic nature, which means when exposed to air, it naturally absorbs moisture in from the air. In treating open wounds, honey is useful as it could help prevent scarring by keeping the skin moist, encourage the growth of new tissues, and allow easy removal of any dressing by preventing dressing from becoming stuck to the skin. Honey’s hygroscopic properties also make it an ideal ingredient in a lot of cosmetics as it helps keep skin hydrated and fresh and prevents drying. Thus, some people call honey a natural “humectant” as it attracts and retains moisture. When used in skin and hair treatments, honey trap and seal in the moisture leaving skin soft and supple, and hair glossy and healthy.

2. Honey is Antibacterial
Researchers began to document the healing properties of honey in the early part of the 20th century. This ceased with the development of antibiotics but recently the development of resistance to antibiotics has led to a resurgence of interest into the healing properties of honey. The effective antimicrobial agent in honey prohibits the growth of certain bacteria. It contains an enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide which is believed to be the main reason for the antimicrobial activity of honey. As such, honey is a useful treatment for wounds and scalds. Cuts, abrasions and scalds can be covered in honey to prevent bacteria from entering the wound and promote healing.
Honey can help treat minor acne by attacking the bacteria that cause the outbreaks while moisturizing the skin to aid rejuvenation. Types of honey differ greatly in their antimicrobial potency, varying as much as a hundred fold. Honey derived from the Manuka bush, found in abundance in New Zealand, claims the highest potency of such antimicrobial properties.

3. Honey is a Source of Antioxidants
Honey contains natural antioxidant properties that can destroy biologically destructive chemical agents which have been linked to many diseases such as cancer. Studies also found that dark-color honeys such as Buckwheat honey seem to possess more antioxidants than light-color varieties. Not only could honey’s antioxidants help to eliminate free radicals in the body, they are also part of the nutrient supply for growth of new tissue. These precious honey properties help protect the skin under the sun and help the skin to rejuvenate and stay young-looking.

Honey and Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide can kill bacteria on contact and has been widely used for that purpose. However, straight hydrogen peroxide is unstable and rapidly loses its effectiveness when exposed to air or light. Hydrogen peroxide in high concentrations can also damage skin tissue. Therefore, the use of pure hydrogen peroxide has lost its popularity among many doctors and other medical professionals.

What most people don’t know is that honey has the necessary components to produce small amounts of hydrogen peroxide in a slow release manner. This makes honey an ideal substance to use in the treatment of infected wounds and other bacterial disorders.

The slow release mechanism in honey that produces hydrogen peroxide is a chemical reaction. Honey contains glucose and an enzyme added by honey bees called glucose oxidase. Under the right conditions, glucose oxidase has the ability to break down glucose into hydrogen peroxide.

Honey by itself does not have the right conditions for this reaction to occur. To become active and begin breaking down the glucose in the honey, the glucose oxidase requires a pH of 5.5 to 8.0. The pH of undiluted honey is between 3.2 and 4.5 which is far too low to activate the enzyme. Another condition is also required before the glucose oxidase becomes active, for the enzyme to break glucose down into hydrogen peroxide, a certain amount of sodium must be present.

Honey alone does not contain enough sodium to make this happen. However, skin and body fluids have relatively high pH and sodium levels. When honey comes into contact with skin or an open wound, the high pH and sodium levels activate the glucose and it begins to break down, releasing hydrogen peroxide.

It would take a pharmaceutical company many years and billions of dollars to develop an antimicrobial product that could even come close to being as effective in treating wounds as honey. Even then, it is doubtful that they could create a synthetic product that is equally as effective in treating infection. After all, Mother Nature doesn’t share her ‘recipes’ with we mere mortals.

Manuka Honey from New Zealand is now being used for medical purposes because it seems to contain the most amount of healing properties than any other type of honey.

Manuka honey has even been found to be effective in treating conditions such as MRSA Staph infections, where antibiotics have failed. Manuka honey’s ability to naturally produce low levels of hydrogen peroxide, it also contains unique floral nectar components that are not found in other types of honey.

WARNING! Never give honey to an infant under 12 months.

Honey is a known source of bacterial spores that produce Clostridium botulinum bacteria. When ingested by infants, these bacteria make a toxin that can cause infant botulism, a rare and serious form of food poisoning.

Infant botulism affects a baby’s nervous system and can result in death. Most babies with infant botulism, however, do recover. Signs and symptoms of infant botulism include:
• Persistent constipation
• Floppy arms, legs and neck
• Weak cry due to muscle weakness
• Weak sucking and poor feeding
• Tired all the time (lethargy)
• Difficulty breathing
Botulism spores may also be found in low-acid home-canned foods and corn syrup. For this reason, you should avoid feeding these foods to infants.

Healing with Honey

* Afternoon Fatigue: At 3:00pm (or when the body is feeling fatigued), drink 1/2 Tablespoon of honey in a glass of water and sprinkled with cinnamon powder. Energy will increase within one week if taken daily.

* Anxiety and Nervous Tension: Honey is said to calm a nervous, high strung person. It can also help you sleep at night. For insomnia, take 1 Tablespoon of honey at dinner. If that doesn’t work, try mixing 3 Tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar to 1 cup of honey in a jar. Take 2 teaspoons before bed. If you don’t fall asleep within the hour, take 2 teaspoons more. An old ayuverdic remedy has men taking the same dosage (2 Tsp of honey) before bed to treat impotence.

* Honey for pain relief: Mix 3 Tbls. of honey in boiled water and drink. Honey has natural pain-relieving powers.

* Longevity Tea: Boil 3 cups of water with 4 teaspoons of honey and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder. Drink 1/4 cup, 3 or 4 times a day. Said to give steady energy and keep the skin soft!

* Honey Relieves Coughs: Boil a whole lemon slowly for 10 minutes. Cut the lemon in 2 and extract the juice. Add juice to a 4 oz glass. Then add 2 Tablespoons of glycerine and fill the remaining glass with honey. Dosage: 1 teaspoon during the day. Stir with spoon before taking. If you have a night-time cough, take 1 teaspoon right before retiring and then another one during the night. If your cough is severe, take concoction every 4 hours starting with when you wake up. As the cough gets better, you take less and less.

* Honey for Burns: Apply to burn, cover with a soft bandage.

* Honey for Asthma: Right before going to bed, take a mixture of 1 tsp. honey with 1/2 tsp. cinnamon.

* Honey for Hang-overs: Eat honey on bread or crackers. The fructose in the honey helps to flush out the alcohol in your system.

In the realm of natural healing, honey has never been forgotten. I believe that as people become more and more aware of the failure of mainstream medicines antibiotics, that honey will indeed be embraced as an wonderful, healthy antibiotic because it is not failing to do the job as mainstream antibiotics are when dealing with resilient mutated bacterial strains.

Unlike many pharmaceuticals, honey has been found to have no negative side effects when used for medical purposes. Honey can also be used in addition to prescribed and OTC medication without causing any conflict whatsoever.

Honey or Honeycomb for Allergies

Honeycomb is an old Vermont remedy for allergies. When honeycomb is chewed regularly during allergy season, it completely alleviates allergies.

Recipe: Chew a piece of honeycomb as long as possible as though it were a piece of gum. Within 30 minutes of chewing honeycomb, symptoms like a stuffy nose and headache disappear. Start chewing honeycomb a week or two before allergy season starts and you may not get any allergies. The honeycomb should be from a local bee farm so your best luck in finding a local variety is probably at your farmer’s market. If you can’t find honeycomb, try combed honey. Plain honey apparently works as well: dosage is 2 TBLS at each meal, three times a day.

SKIN CARE

Honey has been used for 2,000 years as an antiseptic dressing for minor wounds. Because honey contains potassium, bacteria cannot survive in it. Potassium withdraws moisture, which is essential to bacteria’s survival. Honey also aids tissue healing, combats inflammation and prevents scarring. I can attest to this personally. After having given birth to 5 children and used a homemade skin moisturizer faithfully for more years than I care to mention, stretch marks from pregnancy have never been an issue.

Studies have shown raw honey to have significant antioxidant properties. It is also an anti-irritant. As such, it is often one of the ingredients in sunscreen, since the chemicals in sunscreen can cause skin eruptions. Honey is a humectant (it attracts and retains moisture) and is often used in soaps, cleansers and lotions. It helps replenish necessary skin moisture, especially during the winter months. This is why honey is a popular anti aging skin care ingredient in many commercial moisturizing products including cleansers, creams, shampoos, shower gels, and conditioners. And because it’s so gentle, it is suitable for sensitive skin and baby care products.

Due to honey’s anti-bacterial nature, it can cleanse the skin’s surface as well as temporarily tighten the outer skin layers. Honey acts as both cleanser and toner.

HONEY RECIPES:

Honey Facial Moisturizer: 2 Tablespoons of honey 2 Teaspoons of Milk. Apply to face and leave on for 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

Summertime Honey Mask: When the humidity and/or filthy city air is producing breakouts and oily or gritty skin, a honey mask is a great solution! The recipe is as easy as they get! Simply spread a thin layer of honey over your face for about 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

Honey Scrub for the Body: mix 1/2 cup of raw honey with 1/2 cup sugar or salt. Step into the shower and scrub mixture into the skin. Then shower off.

Honey Scrub for the Face: 1 Tablespoon of honey mixed with 2 Tablespoons of finely ground almonds and half a teaspoon of lemon juice. Rub gently into the skin and rinse with warm water.

Skin Infections: Applying honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts to the affected parts cures eczema, ringworm and all types of skin infections.

HAIR TREATMENTS

Hair Conditioner: Mix 2 Tablespoons of honey with 1/2 of a fresh avocado and 1 Teaspoon of coconut oil. Massage into hair and leave on for half an hour. Works beautifully for dry and damaged hair.

Hair Loss: To the scalp, apply a paste of hot olive oil, one Tablespoon of honey and one Teaspoon of cinnamon (powder). Keep on for approx. 15 min. and then wash the hair.

Honey is far better than what most people perceive…

Discover the enormous benefits of honey; its pure, natural and varied tastes and all the health benefits it provides. Its versatility and the goodness it can bring into your everyday practical life is WOW!

In addition, it is often used for treating digestive problems such as diarrhea, indigestion, stomach ulcers and gastroenteritis. With more and more health experts and theories supporting its benefits, this oldest natural sweetener just keeps getting better. Eating for health has never been sweeter.

Honey Nutrition Facts

Nectar itself is composed mainly of sucrose and water. Bees add enzymes that create additional chemical compounds, inverting the sucrose into fructose and glucose, and then evaporate the water so that the resulting product will resist spoiling.

Hence, honey is a source of carbohydrates, containing:

• 80% natural sugar — mostly fructose and glucose. Due to the high level of fructose, honey is sweeter than table sugar.

• 18% water. The less water content the honey has, the better the quality of honey.

• 2% minerals, vitamins, pollen and protein.

The vitamins present in honey are B6, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid and certain amino acids. The minerals found in honey include calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc.

Also, some very encouraging honey nutrition facts:

This natural sweetener has antioxidants, is fat and cholesterol free !

More Honey Facts on Calories, GI:

* One tablespoon of natural sweetener honey contains 64 calories.

* Honey has a healthy Glycemic Index (GI), meaning that its sugars can be gradually absorbed into the bloodstream to result in better digestion. We should try to avoid eating excessive high-glycemic foods which would prompt an elevated insulin release in our body as a result of the pancreas being stimulated to metabolize the sudden surge of glucose into the blood.

* Honey contains natural minerals and vitamins which help the metabolizing of undesirable cholesterol and fatty acid on the organs and tissues into the system, hence preventing obesity and promoting better health for us.

How Much Honey Can We Eat Daily?

We all know that nothing, however good, when consumed in excess is good. So, how much honey can we eat every day? What is considered too much?

Honey Vs Sugar. What are their differences?

Both sweeteners contain glucose and fructose. However, for sugar, in the process of manufacturing, the organic acids, protein, nitrogen elements, enzymes and vitamins in the sugar cane are destroyed, whereas honey, a natural sweetener, subjects only to minimal heating. Also, honey has certain beneficial antioxidant and antimicrobial properties which are not present in table sugar.

Here are three honey nutrition facts that will make you feel good about eating honey:

One:
One tablespoon of table sugar or sucrose contains 46 calories, while one tablespoon of natural sweetener honey has 64 calories. Though honey may have more calories, we actually need to use less of it since it is sweeter than table sugar. As a result, you may in fact consume even less amount of calories that you would with sugar. And in the long run even though honey is more expensive, it may be more economical than table sugar.

Two:
Table sugar is sucrose, which is made up of two molecules bonded together. When we eat table sugar, our stomach has to use its own enzymes to separate the molecules apart before we can use the sugar’s energy. Honey is quite different. The bees have added a special enzyme to the nectar that divides the sucrose into glucose and fructose — two simple sugars that our bodies can absorb directly.
Hence, compared to table sugar, honey has a healthier Glycemic Index (GI) which measures the negative impact of a given food on the blood-glucose level. The lower the GI rating, the slower the absorption and infusion of sugars into the bloodstream and hence a more gradual and healthier digestion process.

Three:
Unlike honey, table sugar lacks minerals and vitamins (hence it’s been often called empty calories), they draw upon the body’s nutrients to be metabolized into the system. When these nutrients are all used up, metabolizing of undesirable cholesterol and fatty acid is impeded, contributing to higher cholesterol and promoting obesity due to higher fatty acid on the organs and tissues. That is why it is not uncommon for fat people to suffer from malnutrition and many other health related problems.
So the message is, honey vs sugar, if you are watching your weight, honey will be a smarter choice than sugar. Besides the differences in nutrition, I feel sugar can never compete with honey in taste. Though both are sweet, honey has such a unique flavor that can be very useful and superior in many foods and beverages.

Expiration Date for Honey
Honey is a miracle food; it never goes bad. It was reported that archaeologists found 2000 year old jars of honey in Egyptian tombs and they still tasted delicious! Many people find it rather surprising that bacteria cannot grow in honey because all things being equal, bacteria loves sugar. The unique chemical composition of low water content and relatively high acidic level in honey creates a low pH (3.2-4.5) environment that makes it very unfavorable for bacteria or other micro-organism to grow. Thus, “Best Before Dates” on honey buckets indicating honey shelf life do not seem to be very important after all.

Honey Quality
What is considered as good quality honey? Good quality honey, that is, honey of value can be judged by five key factors, namely:

1. Water content
Good quality honey essentially has low water content. Honey is likely to ferment and lose its freshness if the water content of honey is greater than 19%. The reason is that all un-pasteurized honey contains wild yeasts. Due to the high sugar concentration, these yeasts will pose little risk in low moisture honey because osmosis will draw sufficient water from the yeast to force them into dormancy. In honey that has a higher proportion of water, the yeast may survive and cause fermentation to begin in storage. This results an increase of acidity, which then becomes an important quality criteria.

Honey is very hygroscopic, which means that it easily absorbs moisture from the air. Thus, in areas with a very high humidity it can be difficult to produce good quality honey of sufficiently low water content, which can be measured using a gadget called re-fracto-meter. Raw honey’s moisture content can be as low as 14%, and is usually deemed as more valuable and hence is relatively more costly. Honey containing up to 20% water is not recommended for mead-making.

One simple way of judging the relative quantity of water in honey involves taking two same-size, same-temperature, well-sealed jars of honey from different sources. Turn the two jars upside-down and watch the bubbles rise. Bubbles in the honey with more water content will rise faster.

2. HMF(Hydroxy-methyl-fur-fural)
HMF is a break-down product of fructose (one of the main sugars in honey) formed slowly during storage and very quickly when honey is heated. The amount of HMF present in honey is therefore used as a guide to storage guide to storage length and the amount of heating which has taken place.

HMF’s occurrence and accumulation in honey is variable depending on honey type. High levels of HMF may indicate excessive heating during the extraction process. Honey that is traded in a bulk form is usually required to be below 10 or 15mg/kg to enable further processing and then give some shelf life before a level of 40 mg/kg is reached.

It is not uncommon for honey sold in hot climates to be well over 100 mg/kg in HMF. This is mostly due to the ambient temperatures (over 35°C) that honey is exposed to in the distribution channel. Some countries set an HMF limit for imported honey. You may also want to note the color of the honey as it can sometimes be an indicator of quality because honey becomes darker during storage and heating.

3. Inverted sugars
High levels of HMF (greater than 100 mg/kg) can also be an indicator of adulteration with inverted sugars . Cane sugar or sucrose, is “inverted” by heating with a food acid, and this process creates HMF. Many food items sweetened with high fructose corn syrups, e.g. carbonated soft drinks, can have levels of HMF up to 1,000 mg/kg

4. Impurities
For most consumers, good quality honey is expected to be visually free of defect — clean and clear. Honey which has a very high pollen content appears cloudy, and the presence of many other contaminations such as particles of wax, bees, splinters of wood, and dust certainly does make it look unappetizing and unappealing for anyone to buy and consume, and hence it appears as if it’s of very low value.
Unfortunately, no matter how much food value or health benefits some of these particles like pollen can offer, this kind of honey is hard to be associated with good quality honey and is immediately rejected by most consumers at the super-mart. And this explains why it’s almost impossible to find unfiltered, raw honey on the shelf. Its cloudy appearance makes them commercially unattractive.

5. Color
Honey is color graded into light, amber, and dark categories which do not really have any bearing on quality. Some of the most distinctively and strongly flavored honey varieties, such as basswood, are very light, while very mild and pleasant honeys such as tulip poplar can be quite dark.

Honey color is measured on the Pfund Scale in millimeters. While it is not an indicator of honey quality and there are exceptions to the rule, generally speaking, the darker color the honey, the higher its mineral contents, the pH readings, and the aroma/flavor levels. Minerals such as potassium, chlorine, sulfur, iron, manganese, magnesium, and sodium have been found to be much higher in darker honeys.

What’s so Special about Raw Honey?
What’s raw honey? Isn’t honey in itself raw?

It’s probably not too difficult to remember well what “raw” means when you associate it with uncooked vegetables and meat whereby any form of heating is avoided so as to preserve all the natural vitamins, enzymes and other nutritional elements.

Raw honey is the concentrated nectar of flowers that comes straight from the extractor; it is the only unheated, pure, unpasteurized, unprocessed honey. An alkaline-forming food, this type of honey contains ingredients similar to those found in fruits, which become alkaline in the digestive system. It doesn’t ferment in the stomach and it can be used to counteract acid indigestion. When mixed with ginger and lemon juices, it also relieves nausea and supplies energy. Raw honey is the healthiest choice amongst the various forms of honey as it has the most nutritional value and contains amylase, an enzyme concentrated in flower pollen which helps predigest starchy foods like breads.

Most honeys found in the supermarket are not raw honey but “commercial” honey, which has been heated and filtered so that it looks cleaner and smoother, more appealing on the shelf, and easier to handle and package. When honey is heated, its delicate aromas, yeast and enzymes which are responsible for activating vitamins and minerals in the body system are partially destroyed. Hence, such honey is not as nutritious as raw honey.

Characterized by fine textured crystals, raw honey looks milkier and contains particles and flecks made of bee pollen, honeycomb bits, propolis, and broken bee wing fragments. Raw and unfiltered honey is relatively low in moisture content (14% to 18%) and has a high antioxidant level. It will usually granulate and crystallize to a margarine-like consistency after a month or two. Many people prefer to spread it on bread and waffles, dissolve it in hot coffee or tea, or use it for cooking and baking.

Among manufacturers there exists no uniform code of using the term “raw honey”. There are no strict legal requirements for claiming and labeling honey as “raw”. You may find raw honey that are unprocessed but slightly warmed to retard granulation for a short period of time and allow light straining and packing into containers for sale. In this case, the honey will not be considered 100% “raw” because it has been heated slightly and therefore rightfully should not be labeled as such by the supplier. Using as little heat as possible is a sign of careful handling.

Forms of honey
Honey comes in a number of physical forms, and understanding the variety will certainly help you pick a more appropriate form from the supermarket when you wish to combine honey with other ingredients used in the preparation of foods. Try out the various forms and tastes of honey when you have the chance!

1. Comb Honey:
It is difficult to find comb honey nowadays, but sometimes you can find a jar of liquid honey to which a piece of cut comb has been added. Before the invention of honey extracting device, honey is mostly produced in the form of comb honey.
Comb honey is raw pure honey sections taken straight from the hive – honey bees’ wax comb with no further handling at all. It is the most unprocessed form in which honey comes — the bees fill the hexagon shaped wax cells of the comb with honey and cap it with beeswax. You can eat comb honey just like a chewy candy. Because the honey in the comb is untouched and is deemed to be pure, honey presented in this form comes with a relatively higher price tag.

2. Liquid honey:
Liquid honey has been filtered to remove fine particles, pollen grains, and air bubbles, and heated to melt visible crystals after being extracted from the honey comb by centrifugal force or gravity. Because liquid honey mixes easily into a variety of foods, its uses are diverse. It is used as a syrup for pancakes and waffles and in a wide variety of recipes, and it’s especially convenient for cooking and baking.

3. Cream honey:
If you are one of those who complain that honey is messy to use, cream honey, which is also known as whipped honey, spun honey, granulated honey, or honey fondant, would be an excellent alternative to liquid honey. As the crystallization process has been controlled very precisely, cream honey does not drip like liquid honey, has a smooth consistency and can be spread like butter.
It has one part finely granulated honey blended with nine parts liquid honey. Crystallization lightens the color of honey, but does not affect the taste and nutritional goodness at all. For instance, creamed premium lavender honey from the south of France is white in the jar. For those who live in warm climate countries, you probably might have noticed that the creamed honey that you buy from the air-conditioned supermarkets becomes darker in color and more runny when placed in room temperature.

PS: Honey does not remain stable if the moisture content is too high. No reputable honey supplier would add water to honey, as this would cause the honey to ferment and emit an alcoholic smell.

Color and Flavor of Honey
Color is used in the honey industry as a convenient measure of honey flavor and aroma. Generally, lighter honeys have a milder flavor and darker honeys have a more robust flavor. The color and flavor of honey is largely determined by the floral source of the nectar. However, exposure to heat and storage time may affect honey’s quality and color. Normally, the darkening of honey occurs more rapidly when honey is stored at high temperatures. Also, honey appears lighter in color after it has granulated, which is why most creamed honeys are opaque and light in color.

Honey and Weight Loss: How are the Two Connected?
Honey and weight loss are often associated.

Refined dietary sugars lack minerals and vitamins and are often called empty calories. They draw upon the body’s nutrients to be metabolized into the system, and when these nutrients are depleted, metabolizing of cholesterol and fatty acid is impeded, contributing to higher cholesterol and promoting obesity due to higher fatty acid on the organs and tissues. The good news is that honey, a natural sweetener, on the other hand, contains 22 amino acids and a variety of minerals essential for its metabolism and hence is helpful in preventing obesity. It is believed that drinking lemon juice with a little honey and a bit of cayenne pepper, the first thing in the morning is an effective anti cellulite treatment as it helps to increase body metabolism.

If you are determined to shed weight and speed up your sluggish metabolism, try this honey and lemon diet tip. If you like, another very popular recipe associated with honey and weight loss is a drink that uses honey and cinnamon as ingredients. Many people have found this home remedy very effective in losing pounds.

The steps are easy:
Dissolve half a teaspoon of cinnamon powder (or ground cinnamon) in a cup of boiling water. Stir the mixture and cover for half an hour. Filter away any big particles and add a teaspoon of honey. Take it in the morning with an empty stomach about half an hour before breakfast.

For people who tend to overeat or feel discomfort in the stomach after meals, honey can be taken for better digestion. Honey is a simple carbohydrate that one can safely take during fasting because it contains easily digested sugars. Foods that are rich in sugars or complexes of sugars are carbohydrates. How the sugars are arranged will determine whether we call a food a source of simple or complex carbohydrates. When sugars are bound into rows, as they are in starches such as whole grains and legumes, they are called complex carbohydrates. It takes the body much longer to digest the sugar from a complex carbohydrate.

The latest theory based on the hibernation diet also builds a link between fructose-rich honey and weight loss. It suggests taking a generous spoonful or two of honey at night, either as a warm drink or straight from the jar, and promises to help us sleep and lose weight at the same time by fueling the liver, speeding up fat-burning metabolism and easing stress hormones.

And if you are considering artificial sugar or sweetener like Aspartame to help you lose weight, you are putting yourself completely on the wrong track. It might get you off from a few calories but it gives you a bunch of other serious health problems. Read about this sweet poison in The Silent, Sweet Killer — Aspartame

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