What are the health benefits of raw honey?
People have used raw honey in traditional medicine for hundreds of years.
Honey provides a range of health benefits. Raw honey, which comes straight from the beehive, contains healthful bee pollen, bee propolis, and plenty of antioxidants.
Research has not confirmed that raw honey has more health benefits than regular honey, but some people believe that the processing and pasteurization that regular honey undergoes diminishes many of the beneficial elements. Some people believe that because of this, raw honey provides more health benefits than regular honey.
Honey is a sweet, golden liquid made by honeybees. Honeybees store their honey in small, hexagonal cups called a honeycomb. Raw honey comes straight from the honeycomb.
Honey from the hive contains bee pollen, beeswax, and parts of dead bees. Honey manufacturers will usually pass raw honey through a filter to remove as many impurities as possible, but some generally remain. It is still safe to eat.
Unlike raw honey, regular honey undergoes a pasteurization process. This means manufacturers have heated it to kill yeast cells that can affect its taste, increase its shelf-life, and make it look more transparent and attractive. However, pasteurization may adversely affect the number of nutrients in the honey.
Some historical evidence estimates that humans have used honey for over 8,000 years. During ancient times, people would have used raw honey, but today, most people use pasteurized honey.
Raw honey may contain nutrients that regular honey does not. This means raw honey could potentially offer more, or more powerful, health benefits. However, research has not confirmed this.
Raw honey may contain extra elements, such as bee pollen and bee propolis, which can offer additional antioxidant and antibacterial properties.
Research on the medicinal uses of raw honey is promising. The studies on its healing properties and nutrition suggest that raw honey may be a more healthful sweetener than sugar.
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