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As a child and a teenager competing on summer swim teams, our coach would often hand us “honey sticks” to consume before the big race. This practice harkens back to the ancient Olympic Games when athletes ate special foods such as dried figs and honey to boost energy and enhance performance. Today, we know from scientific research, that honey is a great natural source of carbohydrates that increases athletic performance and endurance. It is a source of B complex vitamins, as well as, vitamins C, D and E. And, unlike refined sweeteners, honey keeps blood sugar levels stable.

But there’s more! Recent studies have revealed that this tasty liquid gold has many more health benefits. Honey has microbial properties that can help us ward off sore throats and coughs. This natural sweetener not only soothes a sore throat; it can kill bacteria that cause the infection. In one recent study, a tablespoon of buckwheat honey given before bedtime was more effective as a cough suppressant than (DM) dextromethorphan, the substance found in most over-the-counter cold medications.

Antibaterial Properties

The antibacterial properties in honey have also rendered it an effective remedy for wounds, cuts and burns. Used as a salve, honey’s antiseptic characteristics fight infection and promote healing. As an immune system booster, honey raises the body’s antioxidant level. This helps fight infection on every front. 

Honey has been shown to enhance digestion. It is a healthful sweetener when used in moderation, safe for anyone over the age of 18 months. Infants under this age should never be given honey because it can contain spores of a bacteria that causes botulism. This is not a problem for older children and adults who have a more mature digestive systems.

Worker bees visit from flower to flower gathering nectar, combining it with bee enzymes, making honey in an abundant variety of tastes and colors – the darker the honey, the more antioxidant properties. With over 300 unique types of honey available in the U.S. alone, chances are there are many that will be pleasing to your palate, as well as, beneficial to your health.

In the Bible, the good land of Canaan that God gave to the Israelites was described numerous times throughout the Old Testament as “a land flowing with milk and honey.” The prophet and forerunner of Jesus, John the Baptist, lived on locusts and wild honey (Matthew 3:4). And in the book of Proverbs we are told, “…eat honey for it is good” (Proverbs 24:13). However, in the next chapter, we are cautioned to only eat as much as we need, not too much of it (Proverbs 25:16, 27). Even this healthful, natural sweetener given to us by the Creator was meant to be consumed in moderation.

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By Kathy A. Lewis. Copyright © 2009 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.
Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.
Phyllis A. Balch, CNC & James F. Balch, MD," Prescription for Nutritional Healing" (New York: Avery, 2000)
Energy Times July/August 2009


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