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Of all of nature's treasures, honey is one of the more amazing. Beyond simply being a way to add a sweet treat at breakfast time, honey is associated with a wide range of health benefits. As we celebrate our bees, we have so much to be thankful for, not least of which are the amazing qualities and health benefits of honey. Let's take a look at some of these (note: the advice here is not intended to take the place of professional medical treatment)
Local honey is an amazing allergy treatment. Honey is made from a combination of flower nectar and bee saliva. Every bite of local, raw honey contains properties of local flowers and allergens. Ingesting it on a regular basis in advance of allergy season acts to boost your immune system and prepare it for the onslaught of seasonal allergies.
Instead of itchy, watery eyes; constant nose blowing and sneezing; and allergy related breathing troubles, a bite of honey daily may help you live allergy free. Continued honey consumption enables your body to build up antibodies and will produce a lower histamine response to the same aggravating factors.
Honey is a natural sugar with only 17 grams of carbs per tablespoon. Raw, unprocessed honey is quickly processed by the body’s digestive tract and zooms into the blood stream for a fast energy boost. Because it’s natural and short-term, you won’t experience the same low blood sugar crash that’s normal with caffeine or processed sugar.
Honey is an amazing source of antioxidants that have been shown to prevent memory loss in post-menopausal women. The human brain requires calcium to perform at optimal capacity. Honey has an unusual ability to absorb calcium and because honey is easily digested and used by the human body, it helps get more calcium to the brain. Memory loss associated with aging and dementia are likely to benefit from this property.
No one likes the coughs and sore throats associated with seasonal colds. Instead of turning to over-the-counter remedies and lozenges, try some honey. Forget Mary Poppins’ spoonful of sugar, just two teaspoons of honey are the medicine. Honey coats aching throats and relieves the soreness. And its anti-inflammatory properties help prevent coughs. Other healing properties make honey an effective treatment for some upper-respiratory infections too.
Dandruff sufferers are constantly seeking shampoos and lotions to control the itching and flaking. The amazing powers of honey can stop dandruff in its tracks, where other products fail.
To treat dandruff and other skin conditions in the scalp and hairline, combine honey with warm water to create a solution that is 10% water. Apply it to your scalp and leave on for three hours. Then rinse in the shower. You may want to cover your head with a shower cap during the 3-hour wait. The anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties in honey also treat seborrheic dermatitis and other skin conditions caused by bacteria of fungus overgrowth.
Aloe is often the go-to lotion for burns and other wounds. In some cases, honey may do an even better job. The anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial properties of honey act to soothe burns and wounds while also preventing infection. It is sticky, so be sure to cover the area with cause or a bandage. It also stimulates the injured tissue, which hastens healing and serves to deodorize and debride messy wound areas.
According to Dr. Mercola, honey is an excellent curative for herpes. It pulls fluids out of the sores, suppresses microorganisms that often accompany a herpes infection, and acts as a cleanser. In at least one study adults with a history of recurring herpes had better results controlling and suppressing an outbreak than the most commonly prescribed medications.
With all the amazing benefits of honey, it’s tempting to want to give it to everyone you know. Be aware however that infants under one-year of age should not ingest honey due to a risk of botulism. By the time children reach age one, their immune systems are strong enough to fight off any Clostridium botulinum bacteria that may be present. Further, honey is not intended to take the place of any prescribed medication nor is the advice here meant to take the place of a consult with a medical professional.