Honey Under Fire: Why you should NEVER heat honey - Ayurveda | Everyday Ayurveda

Honey Under Fire: Why you should NEVER heat honey

By on September 2, 2016

Honey, nature’s sweet nectar, was considered by the ancients of Vedic civilization as one of the most remarkable gifts to mankind, and it is still, when used properly, revered today. Honey that is properly used possesses unique nutritional and medicinal properties.

The sugars in honey are glucose, fructose and sucrose. Glucose is the simplest of the sugars. It occurs in the blood of all living beings, in fruit and in vegetable juices. It is essential in the restoration and metabolism of oxygen in our bodies.

Fructose crystallizes more easily than glucose and is responsible for helping to build up our tissues. Sucrose is a combination of glucose and fructose. Dextrin, a gummy substance, is found in small amounts in honey and makes it more digestible.

Natural Benefits

Honey enters directly into the bloodstream because of its dextrin content, and this provides many benefits, according to Ayurveda. It is considered one of the finest all-purpose remedies for many different types of imbalances:

  • weak digestion
  • constipation
  • hyperacidity
  • obesity
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • heart palpitation
  • insomnia
  • gingivitis
  • anemia
  • asthma
  • irritating cough
  • conjunctivitis
  • glaucoma
  • itching of the eyes

Additionally, honey provides energy, soothes pain, acts as an antiseptic, hastens healing and is effective in aiding in the cure of burns, wounds, and sores.

Honey is also known for the healing qualities of the pollen harvested by the bees. Honey harvested in an area with the predominance of one type of flowering plant may have a healing effect that is different than honey produced by bees in an area where other plants predominate.

In ancient times, Ayurvedic practitioners kept bees in locations with certain herbs to specifically create a unique healing effect!

With all of its many natural benefits, honey is a wonderful complement to our lives.

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Proper Intake of Honey

Using honey properly, as it was intended, is of the utmost importance.

Charak, the ancient sage of Ayurveda, wrote:
“Nothing is as troublesome as the Ama caused by improper intake of honey.”

According to Ayurveda, Ama — toxic undigested matter in the body — is considered to be the root cause of most illnesses! Toxins that build up in the body can provide a fertile breeding ground for disease. Ama clogs the channels of the body, impeding communication in the metabolism process, preventing nutrients from being delivered efficiently to the cells and preventing wastes from being discharged efficiently from the body.

The Heating of Honey

Charak makes it clear that when honey is heated, it becomes very hard to digest and produces unwanted qualities. This is supported by modern science.

A study showed that when honey is heated, it produces a chemical called hydroxymethylfurfuraldehyde (HMF), a substance linked in certain forms to toxicity and possible links to carcinogenic effects.

Heating honey also alters its chemical contents in other ways (e.g. increases the peroxides, etc.). Peroxides are known for their unhealthy effect.

When heated, honey is difficult to digest; it produces toxins, and the molecules become glue-like, adhering to the mucous membranes, clogging the channels, and producing ama!

Raw Honey

According to Ayurveda, only raw unheated honey should be used, and it should never be cooked. Heating honey is reputed to create a toxin, madhu ama, which can be very difficult to get rid of once it enters the body. Care should be taken to avoid cereals, breads, baked goods and other “health food” products that include honey which has been cooked.

Love to add honey to hot tea? No need to worry — it is fine to use honey in your hot drinks. Just let them cool to a warm temperature prior to adding your honey.

RECIPE: Ojas-Building Green Smoothie

Applying the principles that Nadia Marshall outlines in this article, we developed our own “Ojas-Building Green Smoothie.” It’s a simple recipe, so not burdened with improper food combining. It includes Vata-balancing oils and digestive aids, and it should be served room temperature or slightly warm.

The result is a nutritious green smoothie that’s digestible, won’t aggravate Vata when taken in moderation, and is balanced enough to support the formation of healthy tissues and Ojas.




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About vpk® by Maharishi Ayurveda

vpk® by Maharishi Ayurveda For 25+ years vpk® by Maharishi Ayurveda has delivered pure, safe and effective herbal products that provide long-term health solutions. These powerful synergistic formulations are based on traditional ayurvedic blends of herbs. At our facilities, we employ 20 master Vaidyas, who have undergone years of training and oversee every step of the manufacturing process to maintain this authentic knowledge. Each of us, empowered through our own knowledge and the use of pure, time-tested, herbal formulations, can restore and maintain balance in our minds and bodies, and as a result enjoy good health. vpk® herbals are formulated to create balance where imbalance exists. www.mapi.com


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