Why September? Because September is the month that marks the end of honey collection season for many beekeepers in the United States. The awareness month was initiated by The National Honey Board (a US government established, USDA-overseen, organization) in 1989.
We all know honey makes for a great natural sweetener, but in addition to that, honey has a multitude of benefits that many people don’t know about. For starters:
- Since honey is slightly sweeter than sugar, less can be used to achieve the same sweetness intensity.
- Honey not only gives dishes a unique flavour, but it also enhances and balances the flavour of other ingredients used in recipes.
- Honey makes for a great emulsifier too! It can act as a binder and thickener for sauces, dressings, marinades and dips.
- Honey, in addition, acts as a substance which provides and retains moisture to a variety of dishes and as a result, can even extend the shelf life of baked goods. Because of this great humectant benefit, it's also used as a natural ingredient in moisturizing products including cleansers, creams, shampoos and conditioners.
Let's now celebrate honey and its many uses - not just in September but always!! Check out some of the many uses I've discovered from all over the internet.
The Many Uses of Honey:
An energy booster - Forget energy bars and shots, just pop a tablespoon of honey before your next workout. Seriously, it has been proven to boost athletic performance.
Immune System Booster - Health buffs are known to drink a teaspoon of honey daily, along with their morning vitamins. Though still not scientifically proven, the daily consumption of honey is said to strengthen your immune system. You can give it a shot, you’ve got nothing to lose anyway.
Enhances Vitamin A - Vitamin A is the nutrient that fosters better eyesight, especially when consumed in significant quantities. If you mix items that are rich in Vitamin A with honey, the effects are slightly increased.
Improves Blood Flow - Honey, being rich in glucose, is known to improve the blood flow through the fortification of blood’s formation. Glucose provides energy in the bloodstream, which is distributed throughout the body. As a result, the blood produced has the proper consistency, flowing smoothly through the blood vessels. Glucose is believed to prevent capillary damage due to its ability to improve your blood flow.
Treatment for Sore Throat - Some people believe that honey is an even better treatment for coughs and colds than over-the-counter medicine. To create the sore throat-relieving serum, squeeze the juice from a lemon and mix it with some honey. Stir the mixture until both ingredients blend. Drink the solution. After a few moments, you will realize that your sore throat has been cured, or at least reduced. Just continue to make more rounds until you are finally free from colds.
Colon Damage Prevention - Colitis, a disease that damages the colon, induces much discomfort for the afflicted. You can minimize the effects of the disease if you drink some honey daily. The antioxidants found in honey is said to strengthen and improve the resistance of the colon. In addition, it is used in folk medicine as a means for curing colon-related conditions.
Parasite Remover - Honey, when mixed with vinegar and water, can remove worms and other parasites in your body. The combination of vinegar’s acidity and honey’s therapeutic components is more than enough to kill or expel bodily intruders. When you suspect that you have worms in your body, drink ample amounts of the solution regularly. The parasites might build a resistance if you don’t manage to get rid of them all as soon as possible.
Remedy for Burns - A burn is not only painful, the marks also last for a good number of days before healing up. By applying honey on your burn, the hydrogen peroxide released cleans the wound and soothes the inflammation. As a result, the burn marks will heal in a few days with less pain. Use honey as a dressing for maximum results.
Clear up your dry elbows - Nothing's worse than scratchy elbows (no really) so next time, after you've washed and scrubbed, rub some honey on to soften the skin. Leave on for 30 minutes then wash off.
Beautify your hair - In the shower, after you wash your, coat the ends with a bit of honey. Let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing out and you'll find that your hair is less frizzy and extra conditioned. Or make your hair shiny and bright by adding one teaspoon honey to one quart of water, and after washing your hair, pouring the mixture over your head. Let dry and enjoy your new-found shiny do.
Antibacterial Solution - Bacteria and germs won’t survive when covered in honey, given its acidic pH balance and viscous base. The microorganisms will be trapped in the sticky acidic base, which is too abrasive for their exteriors, killing them off eventually. Apply honey on a wound, scratches or an inflamed region, in conjunction with an antiseptic. You’ll be astounded at how fast your injury heals after.
Herpes - Speaking of healing... Honey has proven to be an effective topical treatment for both oral and genital herpes. Research conducted in Dubai shows that honey can heal these lesions just as quickly as ointments you find at a pharmacy, and was even better at reducing itchiness.
Hemorrhoids - Hemorrhoids cause itching and pain in the anus, as well as blood in the stool. In short, they are never fun. But if you’re looking for a home remedy, honey might fit the bill. An experiment that used a mixture of honey, olive oil, and beeswax as a topical treatment found that the mixture significantly reduced pain and itching, as well as bleeding.
Psoriasis - Psoriasis is a common skin condition that causes redness, blisters, itching, and even lesions. It’s usually treated with topical creams that contain corticosteroids or vitamin D, but could honey blow them out of the water? One study once again used a mixture of honey, olive oil, and beeswax, and found that in most participants there was a reduction in redness, scaling, and itching.
Relaxant for Anxiety and Nervousness - Anxiety and nervousness are the enemies of a healthy mind. Once both conditions swarm your thoughts, your actions are tantamount to produce negative results. Free yourself from any of the two states of mind by eating porridge mixed with honey. Honey’s nutrients produce a calming effect, especially when taken in significant amounts. No wonder some consider it a part of the breakfast of champions. Honey can also be mixed with a suitable beverage for a good night’s sleep - "Honey’s steady rise in insulin causes the tryptophan in honey to enter the brain, where it’s then converted into serotonin and then into melatonin, which is a sleep aid. This hormone is responsible for regulating sleep and wake cycles," according to Dr. Matthew Brennecke, a board certified naturopathic doctor practicing at the Rocky Mountain Wellness Center in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Hangover helper - Party too hard? Spoon a few tablespoons of honey on toast to feel better fast, says Audrey Halpern, MD, a headache specialist and neurologist in New York City. Honey is loaded with fructose, which speeds up the metabolism of alcohol.
Preserve fruit - Jam is so five years ago; show you're truly cutting edge by preserving your fruits in a honey sauce. All it takes is one part honey to ten parts water and then covering your berries. Pretty much the closest you're ever going to get to bottling up a little bit of summer.
Eat it with goat cheese - Need a classy hors d'oeuvre but lacking in the time department? Try this: put a round of goat cheese in a ramekin, sprinkle honey and chopped walnuts on top and place in oven at 350F until honey and cheese are both soft. Serve with baguette or crackers and you'll be the life of the party.
Make a salad - This favourite and easy fruit salads uses just a touch of honey to enhance the sugars in the fruit, and it's a perfect late summer dessert:
1 cantaloupe, chopped
3 nectarines, chopped
4 tablespoons chopped basil
2 tablespoons honey
Mix together and enjoy!
Make Almond Milk from Scratch. You'll find a great recipe here.
Lose weight - Well, what were you expecting? With a list this long it had to be pretty apparent that honey is in fact a wonder food, and as it turns out, you can even make it part of your next weight loss plan. Honey is an excellent substitute for sugar and it also helps speed up metabolism. Just remember: all things in moderation.
Did You Know?...
- About 25,000 species of bee are known to exist, of which many are unfortunately under threat of extinction.
- Almost 80% of food in the supermarket is there as a result of bee-pollination.
- The first record of human beings collecting honey comes from 6000 BC! This is depicted in a cave painting in the Cave of the Spider in Valencia, Spain.
- It takes about 10 million trips foraging for nectar, or the equivalent of 1.5 round trips around the world, for honey bees to produce the equivalent of 500 grams of honey.
- For easy measuring and clean-up, coat measuring cup or spoon with cooking spray before adding honey! ;)
- The honey bee has been around for millions of years.
- Honey bees, scientifically also known as Apis mellifera, which mean "honey-carrying bee", are environmentally friendly and are vital as pollinators.
- It is the only insect that produces food eaten by man.
- Honey is the only food that includes all the substances necessary to sustain life, including enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and water; and it's the only food that contains "pinocembrin", an antioxidant associated with improved brain functioning.
"If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live?"
- Albert Einstein
Source(s): wikipedia | honey.com | huffingtonpost.com | everydayroots.com | lifehackery.com | care2.com | healthline.com | ishafoundation.com | medicaldaily.com | benefitsofhoney