Honey is a natural substance produced by bees from #nectar. Honey consists of at least 181 different compounds. Their concentration differ based on the geographical location, season, method of collection, environmental factors and the floral source. It mainly contains monosaccharides (simple sugars) like glucose and fructose, disaccharides (two sugars molecules bound together) and numerous oligosaccharides (complex carbohydrates). In addition, it also contains a number of bioactive compounds such as phenolic compounds, flavonoids, organic acids, carotenoid-derived compounds, nitric oxide (NO) metabolites, ascorbic acid, aromatic compounds, trace elements, vitamins, amino acids and proteins. It has been scientifically shown that honey has a number of medicinal properties: cardioprotective, antihypertensive, antidiabetic, cardioprotective, hypoglycemic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, #prebiotic (#bifidogenic), anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral and even anti-tumor.
• Honey provides antioxidant properties due to the presence of polyphenols and flavonoids. These compounds are known to inhibit oxidation of other molecules and/or may eliminate free radicals formed during such oxidation reactions.
• Honey has also been demonstrated to have antibacterial activities against such pathogens like Staphylococcus aureus, a common wound contaminant which is resistant to antibiotics, and some other bacteria – Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Bacillus subtilis and Escherichia coli.
• 5-10% of all carbohydrates present in honey consist of oligosaccharides. Those oligosaccharides are isomaltose, trehalose, palatinose, isomaltotriose, raffinose, laminaribiose, panose, kojibiose, turanose, melezitose, theanderose and many others. These oligosaccharides have been demonstrated experimentally to promote growth of such beneficial bacteria (also called #probiotics) as #Lactobacilli and #Bifidobacteria. Interestingly, accroding to studies the effect of oligosacchhrides derived from honey on these bacteria is comparable to known prebiotics #fructooligosaccharides, #galalctooligosaccharides and #inulin. Thus honey can be called a natural prebiotic.
So if you feel like having something sweet tonight just do something good not only to yourself, your body, but also to your gut microbes and have a teaspoon of honey.