Subject: Honey is more than sugar syrup, it increases blood antioxidant
One of my esteemed readers wrote wondering whether honey's antibacterial
action was simply due to the combination of sugars contained within it
and which are so hydroscopic that they bind up any free water and literally
dehydrate any organisms they touch. This is an interesting idea.
It's long been known that because of these properties, honey was an excellent
preservative. He suggested that perhaps other similarly composed
sugar syrups might have a similar effect. As I pondered this question
I found an article which was just posted yesterday which suggests that
there is more to honey than sugar syrup. It says that chronic honey
consumers have increased levels of polyphenolic antioxidants in their
blood. It would seem unlikely that chronic sugar syrup consumption
would have the same effect. Anyone want to volunteer for an experiment?
Honey may have sweet health benefits
29 Mar 2004
Honey may have sweet health benefits, according to researchers who conducted
what is believed to be the first study of chronic honey consumption in
humans. Biochemist Heidrun Gross and colleagues fed 25 study participants
about four tablespoons each of buckwheat honey daily for 29 days in addition
to their regular diets.
The volunteers were divided into two groups receiving honey that provided
different amounts of polyphenols -- compounds found in fruits, vegetables
and seeds that have been linked with a reduced risk of cardiovascular
disease and cancer.
The researchers drew blood samples from the participants at given intervals
following honey consumption. They found that there was a direct link between
the honey consumption and the level of polyphenolic antioxidants in the
plasma. These findings further strengthen existing evidence that suggests
that honey in the diet can provide people with protective antioxidant
Paper: Effect of honey consumption on plasma antioxidant status in human
Authors: Heidrun B. Gross, John A. Polagruto, Qin Yan Zhu, Derek D. Schramm,
Carl Keen, UC Davis; Sun H. Kim, Konju National University, South Korea
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