Sourwood honey is one of the popular types of honey that is produced and found in the Eastern United States, majorly in Virginia, Carolina, North Georgia, Tennessee. It is also one of the most unique honey in the world whose taste is considered to be divine. It comes from the nectar of flowers of sourwood tree which grows in the mountains. But still, this honey is so rare that sometimes a good crop appears only one time in a decade. Also, finding it becomes a challenge as you have to find beehives on those limited number of trees available. However, many people still like to enjoy and buy this honey because of its several health benefits and nutrition facts.
This honey got its name because of the sour taste from the sourwood tree leaves, that have been used to quench thirst by mountain climbers and hikers. It has a very unique taste that is floral, buttery, and aromatic. The sourwood honey has a light amber color and its flavor is so amazing that it is strongly desired and wanted by food specialists all over the world. Its aroma smells like a combination of cloves, anise, and cinnamon.
Some health benefits and nutrition facts of Sourwood honey:
Nutritional facts include:
1. Must be used raw: Sourwood honey offers various benefits, but to obtain the most of it, you should use it in raw form. Honey is also pasteurized like milk, but doing that kills most of its enzymes, vitamins, and beneficial nutrients. Hence, sticking to raw honey will do the work.
2. Components present: In a single serving or one tablespoon, the sourwood honey has a total of 60 calories with zero percent fat or protein, just 17 grams of carbohydrate.
3. Rich in: The honey has a rich mineral and vitamin profile. It has a high vitamin content including vitamin A, B, C, D, and E. Also in vitamin B, it has vitamins including riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, thiamine, and so on. The different types of vitamin B present play various roles in the human body such as in energy levels, brain function, and metabolic processes. Also, the combination of carbohydrates with vitamin B makes this honey an instant energy booster for your body.
4. Trace minerals are also present: Like most raw kinds of honey, Sourwood honey also contains trace minerals or elements such as phosphorus, iron, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and potassium, which are vital to the health of the human body.
1. Rich in Antioxidants: Sourwood honey is rich in antioxidants that include phenolic acids, flavonoids, organic acids, amino acids, and carotenoid derivatives, etc. The mentioned antioxidants have many beneficial effects in regards to health diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, neurological degeneration, inflammatory disorders, aging, and so on. Also, another important function of antioxidants is that it helps to oxidize the free radicals present or generated within your body. They arise from the normal metabolic processes and also from other external factors like air pollutants, UV radiation, and poor diet. Therefore, consuming raw honey can prevent its generation and keep your tissues healthier for more time.
2. Wound healing and Anti-inflammatory properties: Since ancient times, honey has been used for wound healing. The anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties of honey promote the wound healing process. When honey is applied to a wound than its acidic pH I.e. around 3.2 and 4.5. This pH facilitates the blood to release more oxygen which helps in wound healing. The acidic pH also prevents the presence of proteases. These are enzymes that break down proteins and convert them into peptides and amino acids. So, a lot of protease activity can cause hindrance in the wound healing process. Also, the natural sugar present in Sourwood honey contributes to the healing property. The reason is that sugar provides an osmotic pressure that withdraws water from the tissues, thereby soaking up all the moisture. The presence of moisture facilitates the growth of bacteria, which is harmful to your healing.
3. Boosts Energy: This honey can boost your energy level in an instant. It is a proven healthy source of energy and calories because of the natural sugars present in the honey. If you are suffering from fatigue, then this can satisfy the inner cravings of eating something sweet produced by taste buds and the brain. It has this characteristic because of its chemical composition, it is made up of two components that are glucose and fructose sugars. Moreover, these sugars can be easily digested by the body. As soon as it is digested, the body converts it into energy. This is rich in terms of calories, just 20 grams of honey can provide you with the 3% energy required daily.
4. Helps in relieving cough and cold symptoms: The sourwood honey has various properties like antimicrobial, antioxidant, and antimicrobial which makes it the perfect medicinal choice for fighting off coughs, colds, and other flu-like diseases. Moreover, the viscous nature of the honey helps in naturally soothing your sore throat. Also, the abundant amount of nutrients present in it helps in boosting the immune system. These factors not only help in recovering faster but also reduce the chance of acquiring the common cold in the future. Even in a study conducted, it was observed that children who suffered from cold and cough felt more relieved and ease in sleeping after consuming honey in comparison to cough suppressants such as histamine and dextromethorphan.
5. Benefits the skin: Sourwood honey consists of a compound called propolis, which is also called “blue glue”. This is a stick and resin-like substance that the bees accumulate from different plants while making honey. So, this compound is used widely for skincare purposes due to its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, antibacterial, collagen-boosting properties, and wound healing. It can be applied directly or consumed depending on your requirement of instant effect or a long-term one.
Given above was a list of some health benefits and nutrition facts of Sourwood honey and how each component of it plays a crucial role in curing different health diseases.