Wild About Honey
We often shop on autopilot, even for items we consume for our health and longevity. As the knowledge of how our brains and bodies benefit from what we are ingesting continues to evolve, we are more informed about what we need and more importantly it’s origin.
The east end is blessed with an abundance of farm stands with organic produce, fish markets with the freshest catch, expansive growth of wild herbs and harvesting of local honey. Honey has a reputation for being a staple in the kitchen, not always purchased with intention. We may see a cute jar at the farmers market, or we haphazardly add it to the shopping list.
Understanding and experiencing the labor-intensive process of producing honey and learning about the benefits may give you a new appreciation of that liquid gold in your cabinet. Christina Winters Blaustein, a recreational beekeeper, hosted a honey harvesting event late summer, sharing what she facilitated to produce. To appreciate honey is to cultivate an awareness of what that transforms that healing, pure treat from the hive to your table.
The benefits of honey are often surprising, as delightful as the honey itself. Typically, a healthier substitute for table sugar, the antioxidants found in honey balance the blood sugar spike, by protecting against type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Our levels of adiponectin, the hormone responsible for decreasing inflammation and helping blood sugar regulation, are shown to increase by taking honey daily.
Flavonoids and phenolic acids, antioxidants in honey, help combat premature aging and heart disease. Regulating your heartbeat, lowering blood pressure, and improving cholesterol levels are also boosted by ingesting raw honey. Historically honey was used for burns and wounds, specifically Manuka honey, due to the antibacterial effect. Some research shows anti-anxiety, anti-depressant and even anticonvulsant benefits from honey, in addition to improving memory.
With more awareness of protecting and improving brain health, monitoring inflammation in the body, and ensuring our organs are given what they need for optimal functioning, adding honey to your diet is a sweet addition in striving for overall wellness and longevity.