Whether drizzled into your tea or slathered atop your toast, honey can be a delicious addition to your diet. Along with adding a much-needed burst of sweetness, honey also offers some serious health benefits. Consider these and think about picking naturally sugary and nutritious honey the next time something you’re eating or drinking needs a kick of sweet.
1. Calms Allergies
If you suffer from seasonal allergies, honey may help lessen your struggles. Honey is a natural anti-inflammatory and can soothe coughs. Dr. Matthew Brennecke of the Rocky Mountain Wellness Center states that one theory holds that honey is a natural vaccine in that it contains small amounts of pollen, so consuming it can promote the body’s acceptance of this otherwise problem-causing element for allergy sufferers.
2. Boosts Energy
Honey is rich in fructose and glucose, which goes immediately into the bloodstream when it is consumed. This quick burst of natural sugar provides a rapid influx of energy, giving you the boost you need without all the artificial stuff that comes from processed energy drinks.
3. Provides Vitamins And Minerals
All-natural honey isn’t just full of sweetness it’s also rich in vitamins and minerals. Honey contains three particularly important components: vitamin C, which helps the immune system; calcium, which strengthens bones; iron, which improves the health of the circulatory system.
4. Increases Red Blood Cells
Consuming honey leads to an increase in red blood cell count. These all-import cells allow for the oxygenation of blood. When blood is more oxygenated, the body is able to perform the basic maintenance tasks more effectively. As an added bonus, this oxygenation also increases energy levels, which might make you more inclined to get your behind off the sofa and workout.
5. Prevents White Blood Cell Count Drop
People who are prone to experiencing low white blood cell counts, such as those undergoing chemotherapy, may benefit from consuming honey. One small sample size study found that chemotherapy patients who consumed honey didn’t suffer from as many episodes of neutropenia, extreme low blood count, as those who didn’t include honey as part of their diet.
6. Includes A Healthier Form Of Sugar
Honey’s sweetness comes from sugar, but the type of sugar in honey is far healthier than the processed sugar people spoon into their teas and coffees. The sugar in honey is decidedly less processed, which makes it healthier overall and reduces the negative effect on blood sugar levels that consuming processed sugar can have.
7. Is A Prebiotic
Though not as often discussed as the similar sounding probiotic, prebiotics offer some serious health benefits. Prebiotics act as food to probiotic bacteria, which strengthens these bacteria and helps increase the healthy bacteria within the body.
8. Improves Memory
Though consuming honey won’t entirely overhaul your memory, it may have some positive effects. A research study from the Journal of Menopause reported that women of menopausal age who consumed honey performed slightly better on a recall test after the end of the trial.
9. Reduces Cancer Risk
Nothing can entirely prevent you from getting cancer, including honey; however, honey does contain flavonoids that have been tied to reduced risks of some cancers. Studies prove particularly promising for smokers and women who experienced the most pronounced reduction in cancer risks.
10. Helps You Sleep
If you have a hard time catching your zzz’s at day’s end, honey may help you out. Consuming honey increases your insulin levels, which results in the release of serotonin. As Rene Ficek of Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating reminds us, your body converts serotonin to melatonin, a compound that aids in sleep, which might result in you falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer.
11. Benefits Skin
Though consuming honey won’t necessarily leave you with glowing skin, using honey topically can do just that. Applying honey to the skin can lessen the symptoms of chronic skin conditions, including dermatitis and dandruff.