Honey may be sweet, but the sweetest thing about this food isn’t just the taste. This health superfood contains powerful micronutrients that can give your body natural armor against diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s. Honey’s floral origins make it an effective all-natural solution for combating seasonal allergy symptoms. Add to this the fact that honey is a natural antimicrobial agent that banishes bacteria, and you’ve got a full scientific picture of what makes this ordinary household sweetener a secret health superfood.
Honey and Cancer
According to studies cited by the National Honey Board, this health superfood gets part of its nutritional punch from antioxidants. Antioxidants can help protect you from free radicals, molecules which can cause widespread cellular damage throughout your system. This damage leaves you more vulnerable to major diseases including cancer and Alzheimer’s. Honey helps you battle free radicals by pumping your system full of healthy, protective antioxidants. For maximum antioxidant power, opt for a honey that is dark in color rather than light. The color of honey tells you what kind of floral pollen went into the honey, and the pollen from flowers that produce dark honey contains the most micronutrients, making dark honey a real health superfood.
Honey and Allergies
In addition to preventing major diseases, this health superfood can provide serious relief from the coughing and sneezing so well known to sufferers of seasonal allergies. Tom Ogren of Allergy Consumer Review points to honey as an effective, natural way to combat allergy symptoms. Honey contains trace amounts of pollen from any and all plants that the bees who made the honey came into contact with. If one of these plants is an allergy trigger for you, when you eat the honey, exposure to the small amounts of your allergen helps you build up an immune defense that can protect you from allergy attacks, and minimize your symptoms. If you’re looking to this health superfood as an allergy cure, locally-produced honey is the best choice, because it is most likely to contain the pollen from your area that sets off your allergy symptoms. Although scientists differ on the optimal dose of honey for allergy relief, try adding a few teaspoons of this health superfood to your daily diet for several months leading up to, and through, the height of allergy season.
Honey and Bacteria
According to bio-medicine.org, honey’s ability to curb the spread of bacteria has led to substantial interest and investigation by the international scientific community. Honey’s antimicrobial properties come from an enzyme in the sweetener which produces low levels of hydrogen peroxide, lending this health superfood a gentle dose of bacteria-fighting power. Because honey is harmless to humans but deadly to bacteria, it’s an effective way to fight infections, and has found success in topical application (to sterilize wounds) and when ingested (to fight oral bacterias that cause gum disease).