Bees produce honey and use it to nourish the entire hive. Humans have relied on honey's properties for centuries for food and medicinal purposes. Likewise, the use of flaxseed can be traced back many centuries. In fact, King Charlemagne in the 8th Century widely used flaxseed and touted its health benefits. More research is needed to firmly establish what traditional medicine and many holistic healers have supported for many years—that both honey and flaxseed have multiple benefits.
Ground Flaxseed Is More Easily Digested
The human body can digest and process ground flaxseed more easily and efficiently than whole flaxseed. According to the Mayo Clinic, whole flaxseed often passes undigested through the gastrointestinal tract; thus, the body does not receive the health benefits associated with flax. Ground flaxseed also provides additional fiber when added to the diet.
Raw Honey's Health Benefits
Processed honey may not have as many phytonutrients as raw honey. According to Whole Foods, raw honey has anti-fungal, anti-viral and antibacterial properties. It contains traces of the resins found in propolis, the substance that bees manufacture and use to seal a hive and ward off bacteria. Raw honey also contains phytonutrients such as phenylethyl caffeate and caffeic acid methyl caffeate. These phytonutrients may help to prevent cancers and tumor growth.
Ground Flaxseed's Health Benefits
Ground flaxseed contains properties which may reduce the risk of developing certain illnesses. Although more research is needed to firmly establish flax’s benefits, the components of flax--including omega 3 fatty acids such as ALA, lignans and other antioxidants--may help protect the human body from diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, stroke and cancer. According to WebMD, there are approximately 1.8 g. of omega-3 fatty acids in every tablespoon of ground flaxseed. Flaxseed also contains fiber and between 75 and 800 times more lignans--which possess antioxidant properties--than other types of plant-based food.
Honey Suppresses Coughs
Traditional home remedies for soothing a sore throat include adding honey to hot tea or warm water. Honey may also be an effective cough suppressant. Children ages one or younger are at risk of developing infant botulism if given honey; however, older children may benefit from honey’s soothing, cough suppressing properties. A 2007 study completed by researchers at Penn State College of Medicine studied the effectiveness of honey as compared to dexomethorphan, a widely used over-the-counter cough suppressant. Results indicated that honey was as effective as the medication.
Ground Flaxseed Can Be Added To Recipes
Various recipes can accommodate adding ground flaxseed. Darkly colored, moist dishes such as enchiladas or meatloaf hide the flavor and texture; flaxseed can also be used in baking or added to foods such as smoothies, yogurt and oatmeal.
Honey Helps Control Blood Sugar
According to Whole Foods, honey may help to control blood sugar due to its ratio of fructose (which released enzymes from the liver) to glucose. Fructose aids the liver in absorbing glucose and changing it into glycogen. Muscle and liver cells store glycogen and use it to fuel the human brain.
- Mayo Clinic: Does Ground Flaxseed Have More Health Benefits Than Whole Flaxseed?
- WebMD: The Benefits of Flaxseed
- Whole Foods: Honey
- "Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine"; Effect of Honey, Dextromethorphan, and No Treatment on Nocturnal Cough and Sleep Quality for Coughing Children and Their Parents;" Ian M. Paul, MD, MSc; Jessica Beiler, MPH; Amyee McMonagle, RN; Michele L. Shaffer, PhD; Laura Duda, MD; Cheston M. Berlin Jr, MD; Dec. 2007
Caryn Anderson combines extensive behind-the-scenes writing experience with her passion for all things food, fashion, garden and travel. Bitten by the travel bug at the age of 15 after a trip to Europe, Anderson fostered her love of style and fashion while living in New York City and earning her degree at New York University.