Honey vs. Sugar

Heather - posted on 10/29/2010 ( 21 moms have responded )

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I saw another debate the de-evolved into a honey vs. sugar situation. This was for a toddler under the age of 2! I personally don't give my child honey or sugar in any quantifiable amount(she does have multigrain cheerios every now and then). I've always been told by doctors not to give honey to a child under a year old, but after that it's ok in very small quantities. I've also been told that raw honey has healing properties and can be beneficial for people with seasonal allergies. It's lower on the Glycemic Index, so the body processes it differently than sugar. What do you ladies think?

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Tara - posted on 10/31/2010

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Honey can be used topically for the treatment of burns. It's actually used in several US burn wards at major hospitals and there is a bandage called "medi-honey" I"ve tried it myself when I burnt myself on the wood stove, it worked great at relieving the pain and no blister formed.
Honey comb fresh from the hive when chewed on will shrink the mucous membranes of your nasal passages making it easier to breathe. Also chewing the comb will reduce other symptoms of allergies and colds.
Warm water and honey with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar can easily relieve constipation and indigestion.
Honey taken by the spoon 30 minutes before bed will actually induce sleep rather than keep you awake.
Just some honey info.
Oh the children under 1 issue is only for raw honey because of the risk of botulism.
Tara

Jodi - posted on 10/29/2010

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Actually honey IS lower on the Glycemic Index, but it also depends on the type of honey. Some honey isn't, it is just as high on the index as sugar.

It has just as many calories as sugar, but it has a more moderate effect on blood glucose levels (the effect depends on the type of honey).

Personally, I wouldn't add any sweetener for a kid under 2, because I don't believe they need it. Empty calories aren't necessary. All those people saying our bodies need sugar? Well, yes, our bodies DO need sugar, but we get this from our bodies breaking down carbohydrates and fats. No need to add pure sugar to that. The harder the body has to work to get its sugar, the better it is for you ;)

LaCi - posted on 10/29/2010

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The risk in giving kids honey is botulism, it's a risk for babies and the recommendation is not to give honey or any corn syrup to children under 1. The spores for botulism are also present in dirt.







As for honey and health

"careful scientific study has recognized great medicinal value in honey. Honey has significant, known antibiotic properties (Journal of Pharmacology, Nov 1996). Honey is also a traditional remedy for upset stomach. It has now been proven to prevent the growth of Helicobacter pylori in the stomach -- the organism responsible for many ulcers and much abdominal discomfort (J R Soc Med, Jan 1994). Honey also reduces the gastritis caused by drinking too much alcohol (Scandinavian Journal of Gastoenterology, Mar 1991).



Honey has been proven to decrease the cancer-producing effects of many carcinogens, and to be effective in eradicating yeast (Cytologic Genetics, Nov-Dec 1996). Topical honey is known to be useful in treating gangrene, preventing both death and amputation (Surgery, Feb 1993). Burns heal faster when treated with honey than when treated with OpSite burn dressings (British Journal of Plastic Surgery, Jun 1993). There is also less pain, less scarring, and fewer contractures when burns are treated with honey rather than with Silvadene dressings (British Journal of Surgery, Apr 1991). In Russia, honey was even proven to effectively preserve vision when cataracts begin to form in the elderly (Vestn Oftalmol, Nov-Dec 1990)."





If a baby needs something sweetened, I'm not sure why they would, parents should go for something like agave nectar. Much better for you than sugar, and no botulism.

Jodi - posted on 10/29/2010

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"Cinnamon is used to stop cravings for sugar ."

We use cinnamon in a lot. Its also what we add to breakfast cereal :) There is research that has shown that it can reduce blood glucose levels. So adding it to meals can help the with body processing the sugars.

Kate CP - posted on 10/29/2010

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It has to be raw AND local honey for it to do anything for allergies. When you pasteurize it you get rid of all the pollen residue left in the honey. But, this is not good to give to young children as the risk of bacterial infection is significantly higher than traditional, pasteurized honey. On a side note, I can't eat raw honey because it could kill me since I have no immune system. :P

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Has anyone ever tried blueberry honey? It doesn't taste like blueberries but it's made from bees after they pollinate the blueberry blossoms. It has the same antioxidant properties that blueberries offer.

We have a beekeeper for our farm and he makes us batches of honey that we resell at our farm in the summer months.

LaCi - posted on 10/31/2010

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Pasteurization has no effect on pollen, it just kills microbes. The benefit of honey with allergies is only the introduction of the allergen in partially broken down form so the immune system gets used to it. Raw or pasteurized won't make a difference, unless you ask a raw foodie.

Jodi - posted on 10/29/2010

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:)



I only found it out in all my diabetes research. I add it to a lot of cooking these days!! I've adapted various recipes to include it!!



Back to the sugar thing, I meant to add that if you really want to add real sugar to anything, raw sugar is the way to go. I've also recently found out that there is a Low GI sugar that looks and tastes the same as regular sugar but is manufactured differently so that it maintains the original nutrients. I think there is a misconception that sugar is sugar, because it really isn't.



Also, fructose (fruit sugar) has the same calories as sugar too, but it is MUCH lower GI and it is sweeter so you don't need as much, therefore it does have a lesser effect on the blood sugar and is healthier for you in that respect.



All these sugars still affect the teeth in the same way :) And none of this means ANY of it is actually *good* for you, LOL. Just sometimes, there is a lesser of the 2 (or 10) evils.

Charlie - posted on 10/29/2010

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"There is research that has shown that it can reduce blood glucose levels. So adding it to meals can help the with body processing the sugars."

I didnt know that part ........cool!

C. - posted on 10/29/2010

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I don't know about HONEY being lower on the GI, BUT I have been using Agave Nectar and THAT IS lower on the GI.



LOCAL honey is good for seasonal allergies, it doesn't have to be 'raw'.



And no, you shouldn't give a child under 1 yr old any honey b/c there is a certain bacteria in it that can harm the child.



And I try not to give my son sugar, honey or agave nectar, but every once in a while he likes his Nature Valley Oat & Honey bars and I just can't say no.. When he has pancakes, he has sugar-free syrup. Chocolate milk- we use the 'no sugar added' kind. Cereal- sometimes plain Cheerios. He very rarely gets the Fruity Cheerios or Frosted Mini Wheats. And we try not to give him candy at all. So Halloween is going to be hard :/



Oh, and we get the No Sugar Added fruit juice, too. I really don't care for excess sugar, not even for myself. It leaves a syrupy film in my mouth and feels nasty.. Can't imagine how gross it feels to my son!

[deleted account]

I Love Lemon tea w/ honey is actually really good when you have a cold. ;) I am FAR from being 'all things natural' or anti-medicine, but medicine for a cold is rather pointless (from my experiences).

Anyway.... I like sugar and honey and that's all I have to add to this at the moment.

Heather - posted on 10/29/2010

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I live in the middle of the dessert in Cali, so everything's scarce here! lol

Rosie - posted on 10/29/2010

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really?i accidentally bought some raw honey the last time i bought it!! it seems to be pretty prevelant here in iowa.

[deleted account]

I've heard of using lemon and honey for colds but never heard of it being given to children...these people obviously have an obssession for things all natural or have not yet heard of medicine lol =]

Charlie - posted on 10/29/2010

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I love oatmeal with cinnamon no sugar :D

Cinnamon is used to stop cravings for sugar .

Age aside honey matabolises differently to sugar and is better for you than processed sugar , lets face it anything over proccessed is crappy for you .

Heather - posted on 10/29/2010

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I think raw honey is mostly used medicinally as opposed to being eaten....though raw honey has been known to help build tolerance to plant/pollen allergies when eaten. Raw honey is super hard to find here too unless you know someone who keeps bees. :P

[deleted account]

I'd never give a baby under the age of 1 honey, and I can't understand why something would need to be sweetened for a child? I hope I never have to "add" sugar to something for my son who's now 11 months old.

Isobel - posted on 10/29/2010

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Where I live, it's difficult to find raw honey though...why can't we give them pasteurized honey? I assume any chance of botulism has been killed through the pasteurizing process...otherwise why bother?

September - posted on 10/29/2010

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I put honey in my tea that I sometimes share with our son who is 2. I also like honey in my oatmeal cause let’s be honest here plain oatmeal is not the best tasting thing in the world. I don't see the harm in it. It's not like I'm feeding him spoon full’s of honey every day. Moderation, IMO is key! :)

Heather - posted on 10/29/2010

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@Kati, lol! I didn't even read your responses! I think sugar is sugar, whether it's honey or cane sugar, when it comes to kids. They really don't need it and it should be avoided as long as possible!

Rosie - posted on 10/29/2010

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he eh, that was me. sorry, it's not that huge of a deal to me she just seemed so patronizing.
from what i read honey had more calories, causes cavities faster, and isn't really any better for you than sugar. it affects blood sugar the same way as sugar does, so it's just simply not the great substitute for diabetes that some people think it is.
i have heard that about raw honey having those healing properties, which i think is cool. i should try that next time!!

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