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Health benefits of honey

A spoonful of honey helps the medicine go down, but there are other health benefits.
Soothe sore throats, make skin supple, and get an energy boost with honey.
 
Catherine Barry is the director of marketing for the National Honey Board. She says honey has been used for centuries to help alleviate many kinds of ailments, including symptoms of the common cold. 
 
"Honey is a cough suppressant, that's a really great message that a lot of our consumers really enjoy," she says. "They like to hear about some of the medicinal things that honey can do. Females, we always are trying to make our skin look beautiful, and honey is a natural skin moisturizer. It's hygroscopic, and it's also a humectant, and that means that it helps to retain moisture in the skin."
 
Look for honey in products such as cleansers, shampoos, and soaps. Or, you could even whip up a simple beauty recipe yourself. You can find some online.
 
Honey includes flavonoids and phenolic acids (fi-noh-lik), which act as antioxidants. Darker honeys have a higher antioxidant content than lighter honeys. This can boost the immune system, and have an antibacterial effect.
 
Because honey is composed primarily of carbohydrates and water, Barry says it makes a great all-natural energy source for when you need a boost.
 
"I love honey sticks. I love just eating that straight for a little afternoon pick-me-up," she says. "But it's so great in various culinary applications. I love adding it to a peanut butter and banana sandwich."
 
Many sports nutritionists recommend eating honey before, during, and after a workout or athletic activity to sustain energy levels. And if you're on a diet, sweeten your foods with honey. It has more calories than sugar, but it's also sweeter than sugar so you'll use less.
 
Try these scrumptious honey-inspired recipes, too!

Radio interview source: Catherine Barry, Director of Marketing, National Honey Board

 

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