:: Don’t forget honey! ::
:: Don’t forget honey! ::Summer Nicks dips his writing fingers into amber-like honey that tastes good and can enrich the quality of ones life
The writer has been a correspondent for the BBC and is currently running a local Mediterranean restaurant
Summer Nicks dips his writing fingers into amber-like honey that tastes good and can enrich the quality of ones life
“And your Lord revealed to the bee saying: Make hives in the mountains and in the trees and in what they build: Then eat of all the fruits and walk in the ways of your Lord submissively. There comes forth from within it a beverage of many colours, in which there is healing for men; most surely there is a sign in this for a people who reflect. (Surat an-Nahl, 68-69)
Mention of honey’s properties religiously, in the Jewish ‘Torah’, the Christian ‘Bible’ and Islam’s ‘Koran’, show that it has obviously been bestowed upon the earth for humans to reap it’s heavenly like benefits. It is the earth’s oldest sweetener. It’s a great substitute for sugar in our drinks and food and is also good for many other things and treating many illnesses. Reliance on pharmaceutical medicines, which contain many chemicals can become hazardous to our health. God has given us Mother Nature and the knowledge that can at least help to ease the pains we are suffering because of relying on artificial remedies.
Honey is composed of sugars like glucose and fructose and minerals like magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium chlorine, sulphur, iron and phosphate. It contains vitamins B1, B2, C, B6, B5 and B3 all of which change according to the qualities of the nectar and pollen. Besides the above mentioned, copper, iodine, and zinc exist in it in small quantities. Several kinds of hormones are also present in it.
Some interesting facts exist which one may never have considered. Roughly half of the human diet is a direct or indirect derivative from crops pollinated by bees. Today honeybees are an essential part of a healthy agriculture economy. If you have allergies, honey can be beneficial. You may be surprised to know that if you eat honey that is local to your area, it may prevent your seasonal allergies. Bees use the pollen from local plants and eventually it ends up in your honey. It was all honey, honey, honey when I was a kid. Grandmother and Mummy’s recipes for all kinds of ailments and beauty treatments plagued us. Every sore throat and pimple was treated with honey. Well, it is in fact great for the skin and hair.
I remember my grandmother and mother using honey, mixed with olive oil as a hair conditioner or in the same mix as a facemask. It has the ability to attract water. You can use honey instead of alpha hydroxy masks because of its high content of the acid and it’s also safe for sensitive skin. Now being a sickly child, I think I needed my own hive farm to produce the amount of honey my folks plied me with. If I had a sore throat, they’d have me take some honey. Due to its natural anti-inflammatory effect, it helped to heal the wounds more quickly. It also has different phytochemicals —chemicals found in plants and different foods — that kill viruses, bacteria, and fungus making it a good substitute for wound dressings. The taste also took my mind off the pain. There is also evidence that honey diluted in water will help with your stomachaches and dehydration.
By applying honey to your wounds, you prevent infections. Honey contains antimicrobial agents, which prevents infections by killing the bacteria in and around your wounds. When using honey it may help to heat it up before putting it on your wound (caution test the heat before you place it on the wound). Many types of bacteria can’t survive in honey, so wounds heal, swelling eases, and tissue can grow back. Honey may also be effective in the treatment of your ulcers. In Europe, honey has been used internally to help cure ulcers, particularly stomach ulcers. Studies show that burns, too, heal better with honey. The advantage of honey is that it not only prevents infections from occurring, it actually accelerates skin healing. Since the sugar in honey absorbs water it helps to trap some of the moisture so that the bacteria and other microbes can’t grow as easily as in other food.
In treating diarrhea, honey promotes the rehydration of the body and more quickly clears up the diarrhea and any vomiting and stomach upsets. The anti-bacterial properties of honey, both the peroxide and non-peroxide, are effective in the laboratory against MRSA strains of bacteria which are notoriously resistant to antibiotics and are sometimes responsible for the closing of hospital wards.
Look at the following list and see how many benefits honey actually has:
Easily digested: Because sugar molecules in honey can convert into other sugars (e.g. fructose to glucose), honey is easily digested by the most sensitive stomachs, despite its high acid content. It helps kidneys and intestines to function better.
Good source of antioxidants: It plays a big role in the prevention of cancer as well as heart disease.
Has a low calorie level: Another quality of honey is that, when it is compared with the same amount of sugar, it gives 40% less calories to the body. Although it gives great energy to the body, it does not add weight.
Rapidly diffuses through the blood: When accompanied by mild water, honey diffuses into the bloodstream in 7 minutes. Its free sugar molecules make the brain function better since the brain is the largest consumer of sugar, thus, reduces fatigue.
Supports blood formation: Honey provides an important part of the energy needed by the body for blood formation. In addition, it helps in cleansing the blood. It has some positive effects in regulating and facilitating blood circulation. It also functions as protection against capillary problems and arteriosclerosis.
Does not accommodate bacteria: The bactericide (bacteria-killing) property of honey is named ‘the inhibition effect’. Experiments conducted on honey show that its bactericide properties increase twofold when diluted with water. It is very interesting to note that newly born bees in the colony are nourished with diluted honey by the bees responsible for their supervision - as if they know this feature of the honey.
Royal Jelly: Royal jelly is a substance produced by worker bees inside the beehive. Inside this nutritious substance are sugar, proteins, fats and many vitamins. It is used in problems caused by tissue deficiency or body frailty.
It is obvious that honey, which is produced in much higher amounts than the requirements of the bees, is made for the benefit of man, as stated in our holy books. Although this is an egotistical way of looking at excess honey, it’s a nice way not to let it go to waste!