Honey is a highly versatile food known worldwide for its many benefits. Its usage goes far beyond dietetic purposes. From illness remedies, skin medicines, beauty application to food spread, honey usage has no bounds. Honey is a concentrated energy source, a natural sweetener, and an ancient remedy for healing and health. Even with its endless health benefits, honey is often not a big part of many people’s routine diet and is still under-used in our kitchens. We will look at its many benefits and how it can be incorporated into your daily diets. But first.
How is Honey Made?
Most bees only gather nectar or pollen until their ‘sacs’ are full, and that’s when they return to the hive. While in the ‘sac’ or an extra stomach, the nectar mixes with enzymes. Through a process known as regurgitating, the indoor bees receive the nectar and pass it mouth to mouth from one bee to another, reducing it’s moisture content from 70% to 20%. Through this process, the nectar is digested partially and then deposited into a honeycomb. The honeybees blow the liquid using their wings, which help the water to evaporate, creating a thick ingredient you know as ‘honey.’
Interesting Facts about Honey Bee
Making one kilogram of honey takes about 60,000 bees to travel up to 55,000 miles, collectively visiting over 2 million flowers. Ever wondered why some honey is dark and others light?
The color of honey depends on where the bees took the nectar. For example,-colored honey has a richer and intense flavor profile compared to the lighter one. Dark honey is more nutritious and has more antioxidants and vitamins due to several constituents that make it darker.
Reasons Why You Should Add Honey to your Diet
Honey contains impressive properties beneficial to your health you shouldn’t miss. Before we look at different ways you can add it to your diet, let’s first look at the amazing benefits it offers and the reasons you need to include it in your diet.
Contains High Antioxidants
Antioxidants are the properties that protect the body from damages caused by free radicals. They also help reduce the risk of oxidative cell damages. High-quality honey contains essential antioxidants that improve the health of your body, such as flavonoids and acids. These compounds play a significant role in diseases and health. According to research, they protect the body from chronic health issues such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Boost the Memory
It’s always advisable to consume diets that boost your mental health, more importantly for old age – our bodies are what we eat. Honey strengthens fixation and memory. It boosts memory and brainpower, making you healthier. Consuming it more often helps soothe the brain and keep off metabolic stress, hence increasing your memory: honey’s medicinal properties and natural antioxidants help boost brain cells.
Relieves Sinus Issues
There are many cases of sinus-related issues as a result of increased pollution. Paranasal sinuses are cavities surrounding the nasal cavity. The nasal cavities are lined membranes mucous, and when inflamed due to infection, this alignment is known as sinusitis. By taking honey, it acts as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory that helps fight infection.
Helps Relieve Cough and Sore Throat
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, honey suppresses coughs successfully within a very short time. One of its significant benefits is that it soothes coughs and sore throats. According to a study, giving a 2.5ml dose of honey to children with upper respiratory infections is a more effective cough suppressant than giving them regular cough medicine.
Simple Ways To Add Honey To Your Diet
Taking honey with lemon water first thing in the morning has many health benefits. First, the mixture contains pectin and fiber that cleanses the stomach. Second, the presence of sugar (in honey) helps keep cravings at bay and makes you feel full, increasing the chances of losing weight. Its taste is refreshing, and you can as well take it any time of the day.
Cakes and Cookies
The unique flavor of honey makes it sweeter than sugar. There are numerous recipes where one can use honey instead of white sugar as the main sweetener. Especially when baking desserts, you can use honey as a substitute. When following a recipe, for every cup of sugar, use a ¾ cup of honey and then reduce the liquid. Note that due to its rich natural color, it will brown faster than the one prepared with sugar; hence keep an eye on the time. The taste will be different, but you will definitely like the new taste.
Honey works excellently in the preparations of various foods, both as a key ingredient and an addictive. Experiment with it using different recipes but note that Jarrah Honey warns against heating it. Cooking makes it lose its essential nutrients and enzymes, and it deteriorates its quality. Besides, heating it to above 40-degree Celsius will make it taste bitter.
Milk and Honey
Nothing will help you relax more than taking a glass of warm milk (not hot) mixed with a teaspoon of honey before going to bed. Honey is scientifically proven to contain a rare form of sugar that enhances the controlled amount of insulin added to the system. This boosts the brain’s aiding chemicals that promote sleep generation, hence soothing you down to your nap.
As Bread Spread
Honey is a healthier bread spread alternative, unlike sugar-packed bread spread found in the local store. For a delicious healthy breakfast, spread honey generously on your morning toast, and remember to add some fruit portions. You can also prepare a spread of honey-mustard sandwiches. Take a tablespoon of mayonnaise, a tablespoon of honey, and a cup of prepared mustard. Blend them and then spread the mixture between slices of toast.
As Salad Dressings
With the right dressing, the salad tastes wonderful. Honey makes great salad dressing. Turn your snack time into a healthy, delicious meal by improving your salad dressing game. Simply add equal measures of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and honey in a jar, add a pinch of salt and sprinkle your favorite herbs. Take a spoon and mix the ingredients tightly or simply close the jar and shake them thoroughly. Add the mixture to your favorite salad. This is a healthy option rather than using mayonnaise or calorie-rich dressing for your salad.