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6 Sweet Benefits of Honey

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Honey can make life and health sweeter. An antioxidant-rich food, honey is a naturally occurring form of sugar. People use a dash of honey to begin their day with a glass of warm water and lemon juice. Some even add a bit of honey in a hot cup of tea. Honey also goes well with pancakes or anything that needs a bit of sweetness! It doesn’t just serve the purpose of taste, but there are health benefits of honey too.

Honey is a sticky product that is made by bees and stored in their hive. Delnaaz Chanduwadia, Head of Department, Nutritionist and Dietician, Jaslok Hospital & Research Centre, Mumbai, says honey is processed by regurgitation and enzymatic activity of individual bees and by being in the hive itself. While being in the hive, the water evaporates and the sugars turn into thick liquid.

honey benefits
Honey has many health benefits. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

What are the health benefits of honey?

A tablespoon of honey that is about 15 grams of honey contains around 64 calories and roughly 17 to 18 grams of sugar. It is devoid of any protein or fat. Due to its slightly acidic pH of 3.9, it works as an antiseptic.

1. Honey can work as a natural exfoliator

Honey is known for deeply moisturising and hydrating skin, which is why it is found in many face wash and creams. It is also a natural exfoliator, so when you apply it to your face, it will take away dry and dull skin. In return, you will get new skin cells underneath, and that’s why you can use honey for skin.

2. Honey soothes cough

Honey may ease out coughs, especially in children. Chanduwadia says if you mix honey with haldi (turmeric) and a dash of ginger juice and take it thrice a day, it will ease out cough for children as well as adults. Honey has anti-inflammatory properties, so it may reduce symptoms of bronchitis.

3. Honey can help you heal injuries

Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, honey works well for injuries. Honey induces white blood cells, also called leukocytes, to release cytokines. This is what helps in tissue repair. Honey helps in wound healing, particularly in case of burns. A 2015 study published in the National Library of Medicine found honey to be most effective at healing partial-thickness burns. It also works on wounds that have become infected following a surgery.

4. Consumption of honey improves cardiovascular health

Honey is loaded with antioxidants such as polyphenols, flavonoids and vitamin C. Due to these antioxidants, honey may help to improve blood fat levels, lower blood pressure and regulate your heartbeat. These factors can help to improve your heart health.

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5. Honey benefits neurological health

Honey is known to have antioxidants that are neuroprotective. So it works as an antidepressant. It has shown to prevent the oxidation of the nervous system, says the expert.

honey for skincare
Honey can be magical for your skin and hair. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

6. Hair conditioner

Honey has moisturising properties that not only leaves your skin soft, but also helps to keep your hair conditioned and healthy. It contains antioxidants that are beneficial for your hair

Also read: This rice water and honey rinse is the elixir your dry hair needs

How much honey can you take in a day?

Even though honey has health benefits, just have one teaspoon of honey in a day. Excess of honey can lead to stomach issues, weight gain or increase blood sugar level, so diabetics be careful! Click to know the know the side effects of too much honey.

Also, babies under the age of one year should ideally not be given honey as there is a high chance of botulism, which is a rare poisoning caused by toxins that are produced by Clostridium botulinum bacteria.

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