Honey is one of nature's wonders. Honey has been around for a long time and yet we know little about it. It is nothing more than nectar gathered from the blossoms of many flowers by bees. It is then taken into the beehive and changed by the worker bees. Worker bees remove the liquid from the nectar. The over product is heavy syrup with 12 to 20% moisture and 80 to 85 % sugar. It is a good source of quick energy for the human body.
Honey is a sweet and viscous fluid produced by bees and other insects from the nectar of flowers. "The description of honey stipulates a pure product that does not agree to for the count of any additional substance. This includes, but is not limited to, water or other sweeteners," according to the United States National Honey Board 2003 and other nations' food regulations.
Honey is significantly sweeter than table sugar and has attractive chemical properties for baking. Honey has a characteristic taste which leads a number of people to like better it over sugar and other sweeteners.
Honey and beeswax are used in the beauty industry to soften and heal the skin tissue and help attract moisture to the skin. Most lipsticks are made with a beeswax base. Honey can be used in creation successful facials. Mix one or two tablespoons of honey with one-third cup finely ground oatmeal. Oatmeal can be ground in a blender. The amount of honey used depends on your thickness preference. Blend in a teaspoonful of rose water or tap water. Clean face thoroughly. Spread facial mixture evenly over face. Relax for ten minutes to one half hour. Remove with a soft washcloth and warm water. Rinse with cold water or use an astringent. Use this facial once a week for improved softness in the skin. This treatment also works well for oily complexions.
The contents of Honey are:
1. Sugars like fructose, lactose, glucose, sucrose, maltose and extra disaccharides and trisaccharides.
2. Proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids.
3. Volatile aromatic substances.
4. Ashes and water etc.
Various ingredients of honey have helped it to become not only a sweet liquid but also a natural product with high nutritional and medicinal value.
The medicinal quality, taste, texture, color, aroma of honey differs according to the geographical area and the species of plants from which it has been collected.
Honey is measured the food of foods, the drink of drinks and the drug of drugs. It is used for creating appetite, strengthening the stomach and eliminating phlegm, as a meat preservative, hair conditioner, eye salve, and mouthwash. The best honey is that produced in the spring, the second best is that of summer, and the least quality is produced in winter.
Benefits of Honey
The most common use of honey as a microbial agent is as a dressing for wounds, burns and skin ulcers. This application has a long history in traditional medicine. Additionally, the use of honey reduces odors, reduces swelling, and reduces scarring; it also prevents the dressing from sticking to the healing wound.
That honey has antibacterial properties has been established for over a century, but in many cultures honey has been used as a medicine since ancient times. The effectiveness of honey in many of its medicinal uses is probably due to its antibacterial activity. It is now less established that honey inhibits a broad spectrum of bacterial and fungal species.
Honey has powerful antimicrobial properties, which can soothe your raw tissues. Pour a teaspoon of honey into a large serving spoon and then top off the spoon with lemon juice. Ingest the mixture (without water) every few hours until symptoms clear up. Some people add a pinch of black or red pepper to increase blood circulation to the throat.
Honey is useful for the skin diseases. It can be applied externally for wounds, sores, and burns. It is also thought to reduce disfiguring scar.
Honey is useful in providing energy to the body.
As it contains sugars which are rapidly absorbed by our digestive system and converted into power, this can be used as immediate energizer.
As it is hygroscopic it speeds up healing, growth of healing tissue and dries it up.
Honey acts as a sedative and is very useful in bed wetting disorders.
Honey is very excellent antioxidant which restores the spoiled skin and gives soft, young looks.
Honey has antibacterial properties due to its acidic nature and enzymically produced hydrogen peroxide.
Constant use of honey strengthens the white blood corpuscles to fight bacteria and viral diseases.
Types of Honey:
Eight types of honey are described in ayurveda depending on the type of bee which collects it. They are Chatra , Arghya ,Oudalaka ,Dala, Pouttika ,Bhramara .Kshoudra, Makshika.
Precautions to be taken before using honey:
A... Honey should not be combined with hot foods.
B... Honey should not be heated.
C... Honey should not be intake when you are operational in hot surroundings where you are exposed to more heat.
D... Honey should never be mixed with rain water, hot and spicy foods, and fermented beverages like whisky, rum, brandy etc, ghee and mustard.
E... Honey includes nectar of various flowers of which some may be poisonous. Poison has hot or Ushna qualities. While honey is combine with hot and spicy foods the poisonous properties get improved and cause inequity of doshas.