What is honey? Do you know? Of course you do, it's a natural sugar alternative, right? Well, yes, but that's kind of like saying wood is good for building things. Never mind that you can make paper, bowls, mulch, and do so many other things with it. Honey is not just a sugar alternate, it's an extraordinary substance, made by a tiny insect, that has the power to heal and sustain humans.
So let's start at the beginning. Why do bees make honey? Ha! I bet I got you there! You had to stop and think, didn't you? It stumped me when I first asked myself too. Bees make honey out of nectar to store over the winter months when there are no flowers to gather nectar from. That's right, they are the preppers of the insect world! Bees gather nectar and then bring it back to their hive. Then, through some bee magic (mainly adding enzymes and taking out moisture content by fanning the honey with their wings) they make honey, honeycomb and beeswax. All substances that have a lot of the same healing properties. For the record, honey is the food the bees store, honeycomb is the structure in which it's stored and beeswax is what honeycomb is make out from.
Some Uses For Honey
- Soothes Sore Throat—Honey has been used for centuries to soothe sore throats. See links to recipes below.
- Helps Damaged Hair—Honey is PH balanced and helps restore oil production to dry damaged hair. You can even make shampoo from honey.
- Softens Dry Skin—Use it straight or make a lotion.
- Seasonal Allergies—Because honey made locally has nectar from local plants, it is thought to help relieve season allergies.
- Diarrhea And Constipation—Honey is thought to destroy certain bacteria in the gut but preserve the good bacteria.
- Stomach Ulcers— Honey contains enzymes that produce hydrogen peroxide, therefore, it is thought that honey kills the bacteria that causes stomach ulcers.
- Get Rid Of A Hangover— since honey has two types of sugar (fructose and glucose) and is sweeter than white sugar, it speeds up your metabolism. Your body processes alcohol faster, and you get relief faster.
- An Anti-inflammatory—Honey has been known for years to relieve sunburn - this study indicates that it helps with scar tissue as well.
Manuka Honey--A special honey, made by bees that gather nectar from the manuka tree in New Zealand. It has more anti-oxidants than other honeys and more of the antibacterial component of honey, dihydrozyacetone.
- In Storage— Honey is the only food that last forever. It simply does not go bad. They have found honey in Egyptian tombs deemed safe to eat. It will certainly last a lifetime. It is a great food storage item.
- For Wounds And Burns— Before modern medicine honey was used on burns and wounds and still is to some degree. It's antibacterial proprieties help prevent infections.
- Great Item For Bartering— In a SHTF situation white sugar will probably be in short supply along with medical supplies. Honey would make an excellent bartering item.
- Asthma symptoms—Honey soothes mucous membranes. Although not curing asthma, it can reduce and ease symptoms.
- Better Than Refined Sugar—Honey has vitamins like riboflavin, thiamin and nicin.
- Healthy Sports Drink/Snack—Because of its high natural sugar content honey makes a great sports drink and/or snack.
- Use For Canning—You can use it to can fruit instead of white sugar—remember honey is sweeter than sugar so only use ¾ cup honey to 1 cup sugar.
Caution: Don’t give to infants because honey sometimes contains dormant clostridium bacteria that causes infant botulism