As more and more people look for natural alternatives to drugs and medicines, honey is becoming the number one ‘go to’ product.
Honey has actually been around from time immemorial. In fact, the oldest evidence of man collecting honey is to be found in a prehistoric painting found in caves near Valencia, Spain, making it some fifteen thousand years old!
Why it’s so good for us
Honey delivers energy to us in a concentrate – unobtainable anywhere else in the natural world because it is pre-digested – so it’s ready to act on our metabolism. Although there are other sugars within honey, all of them are eventually converted to two forms – fructose and glucose – by the bees’ secretions of enzymes. These two sugars are the perfect ‘dynamic duo’: glucose offers immediate energy, while fructose builds reserve energy.
While a teaspoon of honey contains twenty-two calories (as opposed to the same amount of sugar, which contains fifteen), the honey is much more valuable to us because it refuels the brain within minutes thanks to the ‘dynamic duo’!
Fructose confers longevity on the energy provided by glucose. Although similar to glucose, fructose converts glucose not into fat, but into a food reserve in the liver. The magical combination of glucose and fructose in honey directs our energy towards the liver, where it is stored for if and when the brain or body requires it.
During pregnancy, it’s perfectly safe for you to eat honey. The gut flora of adults and children over a year old are able to fend off the botulism spores that may be present in honey, and render them harmless. Since the spores would be killed in your gastrointestinal tract, they would not make it into your bloodstream and therefore cannot be passed to the baby.
In fact, milk with honey is perfect when you’re desperate to get a good night’s sleep.
As a natural healing remedy
Constipation: Liquid honey has a mild laxative effect, so it’s great for digestive bloating caused by a diet rich in processed foods.
Calcium boost: Combining honey with a calcium supplement can increase calcium uptake by 20 per cent thanks to the fructose and glucose content.
Colds: Honey is a natural antiviral, so you should take as much as your body can enjoy. To ward off children’s colds, give them honey at mealtimes on yogurt or cereal. (Due to the naturally occurring bacterial botulinum spores in honey, honey should never be given to a child under twelve months of age).
Insomnia: If given before bedtime, honey can lead to a noticeable improvement in overnight dryness, especially in young children. Offer two to three teaspoonfuls at bedtime on cereal, bread or in milk.
Instant energy: For an instant energy drink, pour two litres of pre-boiled warm water into a large pan. Dissolve 200g of unprocessed honey and three grams of salt and finish off with the juice of one to two lemons. Store in the fridge for two to three hours before drinking to chill.
As a beauty aid
Bathe like Cleopatra! A milk and honey bath is for beautifying your skin, not for cleaning and scrubbing it. Wash yourself first in a normal bath and then half-fill the bath with very warm water. Add two cups of full cream milk powder and stir it inn. Then mix in half a cup of natural liquid honey. Bathe for as long as you wish.
Hair shine rinse: After washing your hair, mix two or three teaspoons of liquid honey into your rinsing water. Dry your hair gently under moderate heat.
Face mask: Mix two teaspoons of honey and two teaspoons of milk and smooth over your face and neck. Let the mixture soak in for ten to fifteen minutes, then splash off gently with warm (not hot) water.