Honey Antioxidant Studies
Health Benefits Vs Weight Gain?

Two honey antioxidant studies reveal the incredible health benefits of raw honey.



Free radicals are everywhere - in the air we breathe, the food we eat, and even the sunlight we love so much. Every moment, the body absorbs oxygen and turns it into energy in a process called oxidation. This process also releases free radicals.

These are usually mopped up by antioxidants before they can hurt us. As we age, however, this process becomes more inefficient. Highly reactive, these harmful molecules travel around our bodies. They damage cells and DNA, causing aging, heart disease, strokes and cancers.

Antioxidants slow down aging by neutralizing these free radicals. They perform healing at the deepest cellular level, allowing the benefits to manifest in a myriad of different ways.

And guess what, the right kind of honey contains enough antioxidants to rival common fruits and vegetables without introducing weight gain. Are you ready to read what the scientists have discovered so far?

Mild Protective Effect

A 2003 study conducted by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign concluded that honey had a "mild protective effect". This is the first study to examine honey's effect on human blood.

In this honey antioxidant study, researchers tested the blood of 25 men aged 18 - 68 over five weeks. They found drinking 4 tablespoons of buckwheat honey mixed into a 16-ounce glass of water improved the antioxidant levels in their blood.

As Good As Common Fruits

A 2004 study conducted by the University of California concluded that honey contains as many antioxidants as spinach, apples, oranges or strawberries.

The types of flowers the bees pollinate determine the flavor and color of honey. It was already known that honey contained varying levels of antioxidants, with dark honey having more than light.

Buckwheat honey comes from the buckwheat plant and is dark in color with a distinct flavor.

Researchers Heidrun Gross and his team asked 25 participants to eat between 4 and 10 tablespoons of buckwheat honey each day for a month. They could eat the honey in almost any form, but it couldn't be baked or dissolved in tea.

Many chose to eat straight from the spoon. The researchers found that consuming more honey increased the level of polyphenolic antioxidants in the blood.

Interestingly, the study showed no weight gain in participants for the month they were consuming honey. And some claimed that eating honey for breakfast actually made them feel full and satisfied.

This honey antioxidant study was presented to the American Chemical Society Meeting in 2004.

Which Honey?

When buying honey, go for the raw, unprocessed varieties. Darker honeys, specifically honey from buckwheat flowers, sage and tupelo, contain a greater amount of antioxidants than other honeys. Feed your body and your palate.  Enjoy some honey today!

References

Gheldof N, Wang XH, Engeseth NJ (2003). Buckwheat honey increases serum antioxidant capacity in humans. J Agric Food Chem. 2003 Feb 26;51(5):1500-5.

Gross H, Polagruto J, Zhu Q, Kim S, Schramm D, Keen C (2004). Effect of honey consumption on plasma antioxidant status in human subjects. Paper presented at the 227th American Chemical Society Meeting, Anahein CA, March 28, 2004

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