Honey is a staple of any well-stocked pantry, but most people just think of it as a condiment to be added to tea or perhaps to top sweets or desert.
The majority of conventional, store-bought honey, however, is actually pasteurized. Pasteurized honey sounds like a good idea, like any pasteurizing process, as it supposedly eliminates the possibilities of harmful bacteria growing in the honey.
However, when you pasteurize honey, it actually eliminates the vast majority of beneficial qualities of the honey, and it is also largely unnecessary, as honey rarely contains any harmful bacteria.
Here are three reasons you should always have raw honey as a staple in your pantry:
1. It lasts forever
No, seriously. If honey doesn’t come into contact with water or other external factors, it can last virtually forever. They found honey in ancient Egyptian tombs that was still perfectly edible (not sure if anyone ate it, but they deemed it edible at least). You can keep a jar of it in your pantry and it will virtually always be fresh. This makes it a great survival food, as well as reliable pantry staple.
2. It can replace refined sugar
You can use honey in place of white, refined sugar in pretty much any recipe, and it is way, way healthier. Surprisingly, for something so sweet, it has a comparably low glycemic index, making it a great alternative to sugar for those dieting or with health-related issues who want to watch their GI.
3. It is a medicine as well as a food
Along with all the wonderful ways you can use honey in cooking, there’s also a multitude of health benefits to raw honey. It contains prebiotics which help aid digestion and replenish beneficial gut bacteria, and it also is a natural antibiotic that can keep wounds clean and protected from infection. It can also help reduce allergies or ease cold and flu symptoms, especially if you consume local raw honey. You can even wash your hair and your face with it, or add it to healing facial masques.
Raw honey is truly a miracle of nature, and it’s increasingly easy to find at local grocery stores. My Walmart, for example, carries several varieties of local raw honey that are very reasonably priced. Add this crucial pantry staple to your home cooking today.
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