hotsparkmama

Support for health & wellness

Honey–the kind ya eat not the one you live with

on April 4, 2017

I have always known that honey is good for us!  I don’t mean the kind ya buy in the plastic bear containers but the REAL (raw, pure, natural) kind!  Everybody knows what honey IS right?  A sweet, sticky, yellowish-brown thick liquid made by bees from nectar collected from flowers.  Yes, it’s also an excellent example of something or term of endearment, but for this post let’s talk about the sticky sweet kind not the one that melts my heart 😀

My pastor even had a sermon on HONEY several years ago while doing a study on nutrition.  There are actually 61 direct references to honey in the bible with the first time being in the very beginning where it’s considered “the best”, an honored gift.
Genesis 43:11  And their father Israel said unto them, If it must be so now, do this; take of the best fruits in the land in your vessels, and carry down the man a present, a little balm, and a little honey, spices, and myrrh, nuts, and almonds:

In Judges the question is asked “…What is sweeter than honey?”
To me that says USE HONEY AS A SWEETENER!  In fact, until sugar became widely available in the sixteenth century, honey was the world’s principal sweetener!

In bible days honey was a symbol of good health!  1 Samuel 14:27 But Jonathan heard not when his father charged the people with the oath: wherefore he put forth the end of the rod that was in his hand, and dipped it in an honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth; and his eyes were enlightened.

Proverbs tell us it is good— 24:13 My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste:

In Matthew, John the Baptist SURVIVED on honey, that tells me it’s a great staple for every home! Matt 3:4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.  NOW, I’m not telling you to go eat bugs but it wouldn’t hurt ya 😉

Used as an alternative to sugar, honey is a sweet, dense, flavorful food that can vary widely in taste and color, depending on what the bees are eating. Most grocers sell it, since it is a very popular food around the world but please be sure the ONLY ingredient is HONEY.

We have this little hole in the wall restaurant near by that’s been around for as long as I can remember and they have FAMILY STYLE DINING.  You do not order from a menu they just bring you a little bit of everything being cooked that night and you can get all the refills you can eat.  We don’t do bread in our home but they had these huge “cathead” biscuits that were buttery golden and crunchy around the edges…calling my name!  I asked did they have honey…they brought me the plastic bear and first thing I noticed was the bear’s “sign” said “Natural syrup flavored with honey”. Hmmmm… I flipped it over and do you know what the #1 ingredient was?? HFCS!  That’s high fructose corn syrup for those wondering what it stands for.

We’re all familiar with it but do you know what it is?  a sweetener made from corn starch that has been processed by glucose isomerase to convert some of its glucose into fructose (wide-eyes HUH?).  As a sweetener it’s chemically compared to granular table sugar but manufacturally it’s is easier to handle and more cost-effective therefore its in just about everything!  It has been suggested that this sweetener should be a concern in the overwhelming epidemic of obesity and diabetes in our society.  Bottom line, IT’S NOT NATURAL and causes major metabolic disorders!  Even when used in moderation it is a major cause of heart disease, obesity, cancer, dementia, liver failure, and tooth decay!

But I digress….
#2 ingredient was CORN SYRUP!
Hey, wait a minute….we’re talking about the little bear HONEY right?

#3 ingredient was HONEY (being the last ingredient meaning it contains less of this than the first two ingredients) fake honey

When making the decision for my family to remove added sugars from our diet, I decided that honey would remain in our diets for so many reasons!!

Y’all know I love THM (Trim Healthy Mama) and honey isn’t an approved sweetener…I take a little issue with this BUT as I’ve said so many times before we need to figure out what works best for our own bodies/families and not remove or add food groups because it worked for someone else (y)

Most of the honey consumed today is highly processed honey that’s been heated and filtered since it was gathered from the hive. Unlike processed honey, raw honey does not get robbed of its incredible nutritional value and health powers. It can help with everything from low energy to sleep problems to seasonal allergies. Switching to raw honey may even help weight-loss efforts when compared to diets containing sugar or high fructose corn syrup.

I believe honey CAN be good for weight management!
A San Diego State University study found that replacing sugar with honey can actually help prevent packing on extra pounds and also lower blood sugar.  Another study from the University of Wyoming found that raw honey can activate hormones that suppress the appetite.  Raw honey increases insulin and decreases hyperglycemia (whoop whoop bonus that’s good for diabetics)

I find when adding honey to my breakfast it offers an early boost of energy.
It provides an easily absorbed supply of energy in the form of liver glycogen, making it ideal for energetic morning starts and as a pre- and post-exercise energy source. 

I’m sure you’ve heard it said before that “local” honey can alleviate allergy symptoms.
Raw honey contains bee pollen, which is known to ward off infections, provide natural allergy relief and boost overall immunity.  The bees in your neighborhood go from flower to flower collecting pollen that causes you to suffer, but when a you consume local raw honey, you also consume that same offending local pollen. After some time, an allergy sufferer may become less sensitive to this pollen that previously caused problems and experience less seasonal allergy symptoms

I know so many people who are looking for a perfect antioxidant in supplement form but I suggest using honey.
Studies have shown that a daily dose of raw honey raises levels of health-promoting antioxidants in the body. Antioxidants help block free radicals in the body that cause disease. It also boosts the immune system, acting as a preventative against any number of debilitating diseases. Honey contains polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants that have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.

We use honey (specifically Manuka) on skin issues that we can’t seem to clear up any other way. With all it’s antibacterial benefits why would you NOT use honey as a skin healing tool?

If my children complain of a scratchy throat the first thing I reach for is the honey (and I always add a drop of Lemon essential oil for “cleansing”) for soothing.  And I know you’ve seen OTC cough syrups “with honey”, you don’t need that, scientific evidence shows that a single dose of honey can reduce mucus secretion and coughs.

Looking for a natural way to clean your face or help your acne riddled teen?  Make a face wash with honey.  Yes, it’s sticky but once wiped clean your face will feel so soft and smooth.  It makes a great exfoliator! Use honey on dry winter skin by adding two cups of honey to a bath, soak for 15 minutes, then add one cup of baking soda for the final 15 minutes (I ain’t gonna lie, this one can be pricey so only recommend this one if you truly have a NEED).

Raw honey has been known to promote restorative sleep by increasing melatonin.
Has anti-inflammatory agents that can treat respiratory conditions such as asthma.
It can help improve urinary tract infections due to its antibacterial properties.
Raw honey is full of natural prebiotics which promote the growth of good bacteria in the intestine.

I mean really y’all, the list is seriously endless, do some research on the plethora of benefits this God given tool offers ❤

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