Healing With Food: Honey
If you follow the latest nutrition and health advice you have probably heard that sugar, in all of its many forms, is an inflammation-causing diet villain. And while that is certainly true of conventional white sugar and all of its processed relatives (corn syrup, HFCS, etc.), there are a few exceptions. My favorite of which, is honey.
Honey is a powerhouse of healing nutrients and enzymes and is one of the world’s oldest healing remedies. Even though it is made up mostly of simple sugars, it has many medicinal properties and wonderful uses such as healing skin wounds and relieving allergies.
What are some of the main benefits of honey?
Helps heal skin wounds and ulcers: thanks to its high levels of vitamins C, D, E, K, and B, minerals, enzymes and essential oils. It also contains hydrogen peroxide, which inhibits bacterial growth when applied topically.
Fighting respiratory infections: it is a natural antibiotic and rich in antioxidants, and can be as effective as an OTC cough suppressant.
Allergy relief: since unfiltered honey is rich in pollen, it can relieve the symptoms of seasonal allergies.
How do I use it?
As a sweetener in herbal tea: I add 1 tsp to a mug of fresh brewed tea and a splash of almond milk.
As a natural skin exfoliator: raw honey is a wonderful way to soften and brighten the skin. 2-3x per week, I press about 3 tsp of raw honey on my face, dabbing firmly with my middle and ringer fingers. Then I allow it to sit for a few minutes before hopping in the shower and rinsing with warm water, then continuing with my usual skincare routine.
To ward of colds: if I feel a cough or cold coming on, I drink a mug of warm water with fresh organic lemon, 1 tbsp of raw honey, and some fresh grated ginger. It does wonders!
What to be aware of:
Raw, unfiltered, unpasteurized honey is the most nutritious. Beware of all ultrapurified honey as well as cheap fake honeys which have no nutritional or medical benefit. (They are often pale in color in sold in squeeze bottles. The darker the color, the better!)
Manuka honey (native to New Zealand, but can be found in most health food stores) is even more beneficial. Look for a UMF of 10+ on the label.
Store your honey at room temperature away from excessive light.
Be aware that honey is a very concentrated source of sugar, so use in moderation, especially if you are dealing with inflammatory health conditions.
Comment below to let me know what your favorite ways to use this delicious healing food are! And don't forget to share this post with someone who could benefit from learning the many awesome properties of honey.