Honey, especially active healing honey, has many health benefits. It has natural antimicrobial properties and can help to treat wounds and burns. But did you also know that honey can make you smarter?
Here, we take a look at how honey can keep the brain healthy and help it stay that way long into old age. Plus, we discuss how honey may well make you smarter…
The Antioxidant (Brain) Power of Honey
Antioxidants are found in many different foods, mainly fruits and vegetables. They help to protect the body against disease and inflammation and boost the immune system.
The secret to honey’s brain-boosting potential is in an antioxidant called pinocembrin. Pinocembrin is an antioxidant flavonoid that improves brain function. Researchers have found that pinocembrin has many neuroprotective effects.
This means that it has properties that protect brain and nerve cells from damage. Studies into the positive effects of honey on patients with conditions that affect the brain are an exciting area of research. Conditions include strokes, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
Pinocembrin also has anti-inflammatory properties. An anti-inflammatory agent works to reduce the amount of inflammation in the body. Essentially, inflammation is a good thing. It’s a sign that our immune system is working to keep us healthy. But we can only have so much of a good thing.
Chronic inflammation can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes. It can also lead to degenerative brain conditions such as dementia. Pinocembrin has demonstrated an ability to target so-called ‘neuroinflammation’.
Can Honey Really Make Us Smarter?
So, honey can have a beneficial effect on the health of our brains as we age. But another interesting area of research is the relationship between honey and how smart we are.
Cognition is a measure of how well we learn new things through thinking, experiencing and sensing things in our environment. Studies have found that pinocembrin can enhance cognition by protecting brain cell structure. So far, these studies have only been on animals but the science is looking promising.
The antioxidants in honey are known to help improve our memory too. They do this by counteracting the effects of oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is caused by free radicals stressing the cells of the body. Reducing oxidative stress helps to improve a poor memory. Having a better memory helps us to learn and retain information more effectively.
Scientists are still working to find a conclusive link between honey and brainpower. So it might not be strictly true that eating honey can make us smarter. But honey does contain extraordinarily high levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories that support brain health.
And anything that supports brain health has got to be a good thing, right?
Our honeys are packed with natural antioxidants and health-supporting nutrients. Browse our collection of Natural by Ogilvy honeys and treat yourself to a brain-boosting sweet treat.