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Five Reasons to Give Honey This Year

December 10, 2014

HoneyHoney has been used across the world for thousands of years. Ancient Egyptians used it as form of currency, like gold, and a bit later in history Germans used it to sweeten alcoholic beverages like mead, cider and beer. American Indians used it as a fruit preservative and a base for herbal medicine.

Today, most people use honey to sweeten food and beverages, but few view it as the powerful food, beauty aid and topical antibiotic it is. Honey naturally contains 18 amino acids, plus small amounts of vitamins and minerals.

Here are five reasons to give Mother Nature’s most versatile treat this holiday season:

1. Improved sleep and relaxation: Honey can promote relaxation and help ease you to sleep. This is possible because of the natural sugar found in honey. The natural sugar helps increase insulin levels. That allows tryptophan, the compound famous for making us sleepy after eating a large Thanksgiving meal, enter the brain more easily. So remember, a spoonful of honey taken before bed can help you get a restful sleep.

2. Fewer Allergies: Taking a high-quality raw, local honey for about two months before allergy season can potentially lessen your allergies. Bees carry the pollen that aggravates seasonal allergies, and that pollen becomes a part of the honey. If you consume honey daily before allergy season, your body can grow accustomed to the pollen and immunize your body against it.

3. Heals cuts and scrapes: Honey can help prevent infection in minor cuts and scrapes. Just dab honey on the cut and cover it with a bandage of choice.

Honeybee on orange flower4. Moisturizes skin:  Honey attracts water and can absorb and retain water in the hair and skin. At home you can enjoy these moisturizing qualities by stirring it with milk for a facial, adding it to your bath water to soften skin, or mixing it with olive oil as natural hair conditioner.

5. Honey and honey products make wonderful holiday gifts! Honey and honey products make inexpensive gifts that will please your loved ones and improve their lives.

Your city’s farmer’s market likely features fresh local honey as well as other honey bee byproducts such as air-purifying beeswax candles. There’s no limit to the hidden benefits of the amazing honey bee! View this link to contact your local honey bee association: http://www.floridabeekeepers.org/

Florida’s honey industry is consistently ranked among the top five in the nation with an annual worth of $13 million. In addition, the Florida honey bee industry benefits our state’s fruit and vegetable industry by providing an estimated $20 million in increased production numbers created by managed pollination services that are available in no other way. There are over 100 varieties of popular fruits and vegetables that use pollination to ensure fruitful crops.

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services apiary inspectors certify movement of honey bee colonies throughout the state and the nation. These colonies are monitored for diseases, honey bee pests and unwanted bee species. The department has the most comprehensive state program (e.g., number of inspectors and traps) to prevent the accidental transfer and introduction of the honey bee pests and diseases.

Sweeten your holiday season with some local honey and honey products.

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