We're always exploring how to use honey in every room in your house here at Bee Inspired. Our ultimate goal is to get it into every single room! Most people think of it as only the sweet syrup that you drop into hot tea as a sweetener; however, the sticky sweet treat offers up a multitude of health benefits that most people don’t know about. Read on for more information on how to use this amber syrup from nature in new and unexpected ways.
When you think of superfoods, honey probably doesn’t come top-of-mind. More than a sweetener, it has many nutritional benefits and used as medicine in the treatment of respiratory diseases, wounds, gastrointestinal diseases, and skin ailments for thousands of years. Today research has proven that honey can inhibit the growth of bacteria, yeast, and viruses.
How to use honey as a natural preservative
This sweet syrup from plants works in part as a preservative* because it contains a high concentration of sugar. The sugar content forces the water out of any yeast or bacteria cells that could contaminate food. It also extends the shelf life of bakery food and inhibits mold growth by preventing moisture transfer, delaying starch recrystallization, and hydrolyzing starch. This concept extends to skincare and even in how you may stimulate hair growth.
Try it in skincare
Throughout history, honey and beauty have made the perfect pair. Honey’s natural antioxidant and anti-microbial properties help protect skin from the damage from the sun’s rays and serve as a great, natural anti-aging product and also serves as a natural antibiotic that aids in killing the bacteria that causes acne, and as a natural humectant, a moisturizer that attracts and seals moisture, leaving dry skin feeling refreshed and hydrated. Try this Spirulina Face Mask recipe.
Humectant honey draws moisture from the air into the skin for lasting hydration. For amazing skincare, spread one teaspoon of crystallized honey on the face and body. Massage in a circular motion and relax for 15-20 minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can add a few more ingredients and make this spirulina mask.
More than hydrating
Its antioxidants will repair skin and protect against oxidative and environmental damage. For a moisturizing and skin-softening bath experience, add a few tablespoons of honey to your bathwater. I also add some dried lavender or chamomile tea or rose petals. While soaking, consider a honey facial.
Raw honey (which is never heat-treated or pasteurized) contains amino acids, phytonutrient antioxidants and enzymes that benefit our bodies on the inside and out. Typically used as a sweetener in tea, it is also a humectant with antimicrobial properties offering skin and hair lots of benefits.
Honey is said to lighten skin because it contains hydrogen peroxide, and can help freshen skin. Try mixing your own facial wash by mixing two tablespoons of honey and two tablespoons of warm water, so that it’s easy to mix with the other ingredients, add two tablespoons of jojoba oil or coconut oil and blend in a half cucumber. If you are feeling extra adventurous, add some ground almonds. The hydrating properties of will also help revive skin cells, gentle massaging will increase circulation and promote good things. Massage the mixture into your skin and rinse with warm water after 5 minutes. This Avocado mask is also terrific. When mixed with oats, you get the benefits of a perfect trifecta!
How to use honey for wound care
The topical use of honey has a long history and is considered one of the oldest known wound dressings. Some people apply it directly to the skin for wound healing and different types of burns. Researchers from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, have discovered how this sweet syrup effectively reduces the healing times of burn wounds. Using data from 19 clinical trials dealing with 2,554 patients with untreated wounds, the doctors were able to prove that it helped the wounds heal quicker than normal gauze and film dressings that commonly used to treat burns.**
Applying a mixture of equal parts honey and aloe vera restores hydration to the deepest layers of superficially burned skin, calming inflamed skin and supporting recovery. If you’ve suffered a minor burn from the oven or a sunburn, mix one-part raw honey, with two parts aloe vera gel. Apply to burned areas. Rinse and repeat for several treatments over a 24 hour period of time.
How to use honey for improved health
Medical Doctors, naturopaths and other healthcare practitioners have advocated a daily regiment to strengthen the immune system and ward off disease. Nature's gift is also a nutritious complement to supplements and foods, providing vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals derived from plants.
Use it in combination with apple cider vinegar and tea to detoxify and quickly be on your way to a whole new you.
You really don’t need the expensive granola and nut bars for a little extra energy. Simply add a tablespoon of honey to warm water, tea, coffee or smoothie before your workout. Superfood honey has been proven to boost athletic performance.
Feeling a little under the weather?
While the doctor isn’t likely to prescribe an alcoholic beverage to relieve cold or flu symptoms, hot toddies have been around for quite some time and there must be a good reason for this. Known for their magical powers to ease sore throats, break up congestion, and put you right to sleep perhaps this is the point in history that honey first became noted as a superfood.
Catch a buzz with an Eastern Shore Hot Toddy complete with Maryland style rye whiskey.
How to use honey for sleep
Bedtime honey consumption can promote restorative sleep. For example, honey can help ensure adequate liver-glycogen stores while sleeping for eight hours. This, in turn, prevents the early-morning release of cortisol and adrenaline, according to Nathaniel Altman in The Honey Prescription. It also helps the body release melatonin that aids in achieving deep sleep, boosts immunity, and helps rebuild tissue, according to Dr. Axe.***
What's more, honey will not expire. It is a sugar, and all sugars are hygroscopic, meaning they don’t contain much water in their natural state. Very few bacteria or microorganisms can survive in an environment like that. One thing that sets honey apart from other sugars, and makes it an excellent long-term resident in your cupboard, is its high acidity. The oldest honey that has been found dates back 5,000 years.
Sweeten your coffee with Mother Nature
Honey in coffee works. It is a healthy natural sweetener, not a synthetic, strange-aftertaste-making substance like an artificial sweetener that doesn’t contribute dietary calories, increasing insulin production increasing hunger, eating, and obesity. We think it’s about pairing strong coffee and mild honey. We use Spring Honey in our coffee. How does honey in coffee taste? Basically the same as coffee with sugar. If you are curious about how I feel about artificial sweeteners, read up. Try honey in coffee yourself and see what you think. You should give it a try.