Honey, in addition to a natural sweetener, as well as cough prevents colds and flu and sore throats . It is also hydrating, anti-inflammatory, energizing and a natural antibiotic.

With winter at the door, honey can become an excellent ally to fight colds and flu, as well as coughs or sore throats, since it favors both saliva and mucus secretions .

Honey also has moisturizing properties for hair and skin , anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It also works as a natural antibiotic, increases energy, has diuretic properties that purify the body and works as a natural sweetener.

As María Fernández-Salvador, founder of the gourmet firm Loma de la Ermita, based in Córdoba, and specialist in honeys explains, “these can be distinguished both by the type of bee that makes them and by the flower or plantation on which said bees work. ” In the world, he points out, there are varieties of all kinds: dandelion honey, Jerusalem thorn honey, Himalayan honey …

Honey of flowers
In Spain, one of the most traditional honeys is flower honeys , which, thanks to bees, is harvested in summer, shortly after flowering. New options have been added to the most popular type of honey with excellent properties compared to the more classic one.

For the honey expert, of all the variety available on the market there are four the most versatile honeys , which also have recognized benefits for the body.

Orange blossom honey
One of them, says Fernández-Salvador, is orange blossom honey, also known as citrus or orange honey. “It has a light amber color and a floral aroma, sweet and lingering in time, reminiscent of spring. It is subtle and delicate on the palate and one of the most appreciated, since it is an ancient moisturizing ingredient for hair and hair. skin “.

Avocado honey
For Fernández-Salvador, another good option is avocado honey. “This is an unknown and exclusive ingredient, a variety highly appreciated due to its scarcity and its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties . Although it is sweet, this type of honey also has a salty touch. What is most valued about it is not only its delicious flavor, also the fact that it is the dietary sweetener by nature, which thanks to its diuretic properties helps purify the body. Haute cuisine chefs have begun to incorporate it into their dishes “, he says.

Honey of flowers
Thousand-flowered honey, which, as the founder of Loma de la Ermita says, “is a classic and the first to be thought of when the four letters are pronounced”, is capable of increasing energy and acts as a natural antibiotic . “The flavor of this type of honey has the nuances of the surrounding flowers, and, in our case, the base is rosemary, heather and strawberry tree, among other field bushes, which gives it a more powerful flavor and color” .

Oak honey
Finally, Fernández-Salvador recommends holm oak honey, “which is a variety known to the privileged few due to its scarcity and its dependence on the weather.” Dark in color (almost black) with greenish or reddish reflections, it has a fairly strong flavor.

“Iron is one of the natural elements of this honey, and the one that gives it its dark hue. It has many different uses, but the usual thing is that it serves as a natural sweetener to soften the acidity of the tomato and the flavor of the meat , to clarify wines and juices, to freeze fruits and ice creams or to enhance the flavor of dairy products “.

Source of vitamins
In addition to the aforementioned properties, honey is a source of vitamins and minerals, without fat and with a very low salt content , whose health benefits are unquestionable.

Thus, honey contributes to the functioning of the nervous system and the normal metabolism of proteins and glycogen, regulates hormonal activity, favors the formation of red blood cells, the correct functioning of the immune system, or muscle recovery avoiding possible contractures.

Natural sweetener
Rebeca Vázquez, general secretary of the Association of Merchants and Packers of Honey (Asemiel-Animpa), emphasizes that, “from the point of view of health, honey is a totally natural product and all the sugars it contains are naturally present . Fructose and glucose provide benefits that, surely, other sugars do not have. Mainly, we can talk about vitamin B6, which helps us to boost our immune system. It also helps us to better cope with fatigue, to better cope with the days ” .

On whether honey is suitable for diabetics, Vázquez explains that it is the doctor who must determine whether or not a person can take some honey. ” What we can say is that it is a perfect substitute for sugar and other sweeteners , and that, within the sweet world, if the doctor says yes, it is the best they can take.” Vázquez recalls that honey is a sustainable product, since the pollination of bees improves the profitability of small farms by 24% and 75% of food production depends on it.

Despite being the leading producer country in the EU, Spaniards only take 0.8 kilos of honey a year per year and only 42% include it in their diet at least once a week. Due to its energizing power, it is recommended for school-age children.

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