Raw honey which has an array of nutrients, including many antioxidants, is worthy of special consideration as a healthy food, a new study suggests.

Although honey is 80% sugar, “around 15% of honey is made of dozens of rare sugars – e.g. isomaltulose, kojibiose, trehalose, melezitose, etc. – which have been shown to have many physiological and metabolic benefits including improving glucose response, reducing insulin resistance, and promoting [the] growth of bacteria associated with a healthy gut”, says co-author of the study Dr Tauseef Ahmad Khan, research associate at the Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Canada.

Honey contains much more than sugars. It has “many bioactive molecules, including polyphenols, flavonoids, and organic acids that have an array of pharmacological properties including antibiotic effect, anti-cancer effect, anti-obesogenic [anti-obesity] effect, protection against free radical damage and reducing inflammation, etc,” Dr Khan says.

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