Honey, a More Complete Food Than Sweeteners

Its content of sugars and the presence of mineral salts make it a magnificent complement for sportsmen

Honey, one of those staples of humanity as bread or wine, is present in all cultures, and being the first sweetener known to man – and sugar until the arrival of the only employers is a continuous reference Of comfortable and pleasant life.
Its consumption by humans comes from very old, there is evidence collecting honey by man in the Neolithic, as the cave paintings of the Cave of the Spider, Bicorp (Valencia) and in Egyptian hieroglyphics, among others, and their Role of natural food has remained intact to this day.

Honey, a more complete food than sweeteners

Honey, a more complete food than sweeteners

By its nature as basic food is all know what honey, and their relationship with the bee, but from a regulatory point of view, means honey “to the natural sweet substance produced by the bee Apis mellifera from Nectar of plants or secretions of live parts of plants or excretions of sucking insects present in living parts of plants, which bees collect, transform, combine with specific substances of their own, deposit, dehydrate, store and leave in hives to mature ” . (Honey quality standard, Directive 110/2001 EEC).

Under this definition to designate a product as honey have to be combined three factors : the honeybee, proceed substrates of vegetable origin, and that action typical of the bees substances the product is processed and ripens into a honeycomb. On the contrary, they are outside of this denomination several products defined popularly like honey, of which some enjoy of great popularity but that normatively they should not receive this denomination, we refer to what is known like honey of cane (molasses of cane) Or Palm honey (palm sap syrup), typical of the Canary Islands, as well as maple syrup, honey of agave, and glucose syrups (imitations of honey).

Because of its composition honey is a fundamentally energy food, only food rich in carbohydrates animal . More than two-thirds of them are simple sugars (90-95% of total honey sugars), glucose and fructose almost equally, but usually fructose in the highest proportion. The rest of the honey is composed of water and minor substances, which are responsible for the diversity of colors and aromas between different types of honey, as well as most of the properties attributed to honey.

Among the minor substances of honey are organic acids – mainly gluconic acid (70-80% of the total acidity) that give the honey a high acidity. Nitrogenous matter, composed of proteins of pollen and enzymes of honey, and minerals, emphasizing by its concentration the Potassium, and distance Phosphorus, Calcium, Sodium and Magnesium.

The nutritional value of honey is very high standing out for its energy (304 kcal / 100g) and lack of fat. It has a low level of proteins (0.2-2.6%), derived mainly from the pollen grains it has in suspension and minerals and vitamins in small proportions, being variable its content in K (500 mg / 100g) and absence Of vitamin B12.

Its spectrum of sugars and the presence of mineral salts make it a great complement for athletes combining sugars of immediate absorption (glucose) with others of slower absorption (fructose) and solutes that help to replace the minerals lost by sweat and physical effort.

It is a more complete food than other sweeteners because it provides minerals, vitamins and other nutrients even in small proportions.


Honey is rich in enzymes, which are the substances responsible for the transformation of nectar into honey and its conservation characteristics. Most are provided by bees during the making of honey.

There are substances in honey that give it important antioxidant properties, specifically its polyphenolic fraction, and more specifically of the flavonoid type (pinocembrina, pinobanksin, chrysin, galagin). It also contains vitamin C (ascorbic acid), selenium, and catalase.
Dark honeys generally have higher levels of these substances and therefore have antioxidant properties. This effect will be useful in the elaboration of foods where honey is an ingredient, since it acts as a natural antioxidant of the food. It is also important in maintaining health, fighting against cellular aging (eliminates free radicals).


The many benefits of honey are known by many, though perhaps what remains unknown to most is why honey is an antibacterial so effective for humans. Faced with a scenario where many current medications and antibiotics run into increasingly resistant bacteria, honey has become one of the most recommended remedies for specialists to deal with bacterial infections.
Its benefits are innumerable: it helps stimulate the immune system, aid in digestion and weight loss, and even relieve cold symptoms, among other advantages. All these properties configure an environment incompatible with the growth and multiplication of microorganisms, achieving not only that they can not live, but even eliminate.

In addition to traditional jobs in folk medicine (often lacking scientific evidence) is extending the use of the therapeutic properties of honey in conventional medicine, usually linked to their physical and antibacterial properties. It is recommended for use in:
1. Treatment of burns (hygroscopic, antiseptic and water-soluble).
2. Wound healing.
3. Gastric and duodenal ulcers (attacks Helycobacter pilory).
4. Diarrhea and gastric problems.
5. Prebiotic activity, facilitating the growth of microorganisms beneficial to the organism, thanks to the presence of certain types of sugars.
6. Desensitization to allergies to certain types of pollen.

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