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Honey and Brain Function

December 06, 2017

Honey and Brain Function

By Dr. Keerthy Sunder

Honey for Sharper Brain Function

Our brain is a super machine!

Weighing in at just a small percentage of our total body weight, it contains 1 quadrillion neurons and is capable of the most complex operations. But it takes a lot of energy to operate the brain and the nervous system. In fact, the brain consumes 70% of the body's glucose.

The bottom line?

The brain needs sugar to operate.

In fact, glucose is the brain's preferred fuel. However, most of us eat too much refined sugars, which can actually worsen our mood and brain function.

Enter honey.

Honey is a powerful energy source for our brain. It contains almost an equal 1:1 ratio of fructose and glucose which is perfect for our liver to turn it immediately into glycogen - a multibranched polysaccharide of glucose that serves as a form of energy storage and is our brain's fuel.

Here, we review the entire gamut of benefits of honey for healthy brain function. Then, we discuss the merits of sugar vs. honey and suggest ways you can keep your brain in top performance in all stages of life. At the end, we welcome your questions about honey. Note here that we love to hear from our readers. We'll do our best to answer your questions personally and promptly.

Honey and the Secret of Brain Function Optimization

One of the least known ways honey works to boost your brain function is by aiding in the body's absorption of calcium. The absorption of this essential mineral is a crucial part of brain health and function.

Each brain cell needs calcium for the electrical signals to work. If there is a deficiency of calcium in the body, the brain will not function properly.

In fact, researchers recently looked into the significance of calcium for the honey bee and found that it was crucial for long term memory and learning, even in insects. The study observed that when honey bees were deprived of calcium, they were not able to remember their food source. However, only within three days of receiving calcium again, the bees were able to re-learn and remember their food source.


"Honey contains organic acids, all nine essential amino acids (and nonessentials except for glutamine and asparagine), 31 minerals, vitamins, and numerous polyphenols and flavinoids. The sugars include a dizzying list beyond glucose and fructose, including 5-10% of total carbohydrates consisting of oligosaccharides, microflora modulating prebiotics."
- Dr. Kelly Brogan, M.D.

"Honey is the Gold Standard brain fuel. It prevents or eliminates metabolic stress which in turn leads to improved functional capacity for learning and memory. Honey also promotes recovery sleep and fuels the brain during the night. In fact, honey can improve your sleep quality and duration, reduce the risk for all the metabolic conditions associated with sleep deprivation or interrupted sleep, and increase REM sleep."
- Dr. Ron Fessenden, M.D., MPH

Is Honey Better Than Sugar for Your Brain Function?

Yes. Honey is better than sugar for brain function.

Now, sugar is not necessarily all bad. In fact, it's necessary. Glucose is the main source of food that the brain uses to function. Today, however, "sugar" is a feared word mainly because of the rising consumption of refined sugars such as high fructose corn syrup, one of the worst forms of processed sugar that is linked to numerous health conditions.

While our brains require a constant supply of glucose in order to function properly, consuming high amounts of refined sugars slowly but surely damages the cells in our brain. One research group at the University of Wisconsin found that the way our brains react to large amounts of refined sugars in similar to the way they react to virus or bacteria. As a consequence, this immune response may lead to cognitive deficits such as those associated with Alzheimer's disease.

How is honey different?

It is well known that about 96% of honey consists of the two simple sugars:

  1. Fructose
  2. Glucose

As a result, many would argue that honey and sugar are the same because simple sugars (or monosacharids) are sugar, and thus they are the same. But this is not true.

Honey is a natural sweetener. In addition to having excellent nutritional value, honey is a good source of physiologically active natural compounds, such as polyphenols, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that act as a main energy source and fuel for our brains. But honey doesn't only feed our brain...it can also improve and protect our brain function.

One study supplemented the normal diet of two-month-old rats with honey over a one-year period and found that the consumption of honey may reduce anxiety and improve spatial memory. In the study, honey-fed rats showed significantly less anxiety at all stages of ageing compared with rats that were fed sucrose. In addition, honey-fed rats also displayed better spatial memory in comparison to their sucrose-fed peers.

THE VERDICT: Honey is, in fact, better for you than refined sugar. But, you should always be cautious with any excess amount of nutrient intake.

The Best Honey for Brain Function Boost

So what kind of honey should you be buying?
honey and brain
We'd like to introduce to you Dr. Sunder's Honey Love - a 100% Pure, Raw & Organic Honey for a brain boost straight from the hive. Inspired by 20+ years of his medical work as psychiatrist and obstetrician, Dr. Keerthy Sunder has created the Honey Love synergistic blend using the highest quality ingredients for brain focus. Honey Love is made of:

  • Premium Raw Wild Thistle Honey
  • Unfiltered Natural Canadian Prairie Honey
  • Organic Wild-Sourced Turmeric
  • Organic Ginger Powder
  • True Ceylon Cinnamon

Why these ingredients, exactly?

Dr. Sunder found that the synergistic mix of organic, wild-sourced, and antioxidant ingredients can double or triple the positive effect on your brain health and mental sharpness. Here is how each ingredient in Honey Love boosts and protects your brain:

1. Raw honey is the ultimate brain food. It is also a natural source of magnesium, potassium, and B vitamins, providing you with vital energy and brain focus.

2. Curcumin, also called Tumeric, is a bright yellow compound found in the spice turmeric - is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and lipophilic ingredient that can improve overall cognitive functions. It has been used in multiple treatment approaches for dementia and traumatic brain injury.

3. Cinnamon can delay or reverse cognitive impairment. One study found that cinnamon improved cognition and reduced oxidation in the brain. Other findings suggest that cinnamon could promote brain activity.

4. Ginger has been claimed to improve memory. Moreover, it has also been used as an ingredient for cognitive enhancement. In fact, some preliminary scientific data showed that ginger rhizomes extract could enhance memory and protect against brain damage.

So, treat your mind to some of the world's finest wild-sourced super-foods in a rejuvenating burst of sweetness.

Your brain will thank you! 

Does Honey Really Work for Brain Focus?

Yes, it does.

Our brain is highly susceptible to oxidative damage due to its high oxygen demand as well as to the high amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids in the neuronal membranes. Honey can help with brain damage that may result from oxidative stress. In fact, several research reports have suggested that the neuroprotective effects of polyphenols and flavonoids from honey involve several important activities within the brain. These include:

  • Attenuation of neuroinflammation.
  • Promotion of memory, learning, and cognitive function.
  • Protection against oxidative challenge.
  • Protection against neurotoxin-induced neuronal injury.

In conclusion, honey has an undeniable neuroprotective and nootropic effects. So, add a spoonful of Honey Love to your tea, toast, cereal, yogurt, milk...and protect your brain while enjoying the heavenly sweetness.

Honey and Brain Power: Focus Questions

Now that we've discussed the benefits of honey for focus and overall brain health, questions may be popping into your mind. We welcome you to send us your questions and inquiries in the comments section below. We do our best to address all of our reader's legitimate concerns and offer support along the journey towards an optimal, focused mind.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Reference Sources:
Hindawi: Neurological Effects of Honey: Current and Future Prospects
NCBI: The effects of long-term honey, sucrose or sugar-free diets on memory and anxiety in rats
NCBI: The effect of curcumin (turmeric) on Alzheimer's disease: An overview
NCBI: Cinnamon - Mystic powers of a minute ingredient
NCBI: Zingiber officinale Improves Cognitive Function of the Middle-Aged Healthy Women

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