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Ghee and honey can do wonders to our health. Being rich in several essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients can aid our physical and mental health. In fact, both are considered the best superfoods when it comes to weight loss. However, it is recommended to avoid mixing or consuming these two ingredients together.
Dr Swathi Reddy (PT), Consultant Physiotherapist and certified diet counsellor and MIAP, Motherhood Hospitals, Bengaluru, spoke to HealthShot about it.
Let’s first understand why ghee and honey are good for our body.
Ghee has always been an integral part of Indian cooking. Not only does it make your food delicious, but it may come as a surprise to many that ghee has incredible health benefits as well.
Ghee is helpful in maintaining a healthy gut. The consumption of ghee helps in releasing stomach acids which help in digesting the food. It is for this reason certain foods like pooran poli or khichdi need to have ghee, to help us digest them better
Ghee contains high levels of Omega-3 and Omega-9 fatty acids which are considered extremely good for the nerves and the brain.
Ghee also contains important vitamins like vitamin A and vitamin E which are needed for hormonal balance and a healthy liver.
Because of being rich in Omega 3 fatty acids, ghee can aid your body during weight loss by increasing the lean body mass and reducing the excess fats.
Ghee is always known to be a good source of energy and more important for breastfeeding mothers.
It is a saturated fat, because of which there is always a debate regarding its inclusion in the diet. But our body needs some amount of saturated fats as well. Brain functioning and saturated fats are closely related. But excessive amounts of it are unhealthy. Its intake should be limited.
Honey is loved all over the world. Its sweetness and depth of flavour make it hard to resist. Dr Reddy said it also has many potential health benefits. Such as:
Good quality honey that is fresh and minimally processed contains important antioxidants which help in preventing premature aging, type 2 diabetes and heart disease as well.
Having honey with warm water on an empty stomach is helpful in increasing metabolism and thus aids in weight reduction
Honey is the best hydrating component when it comes to skin and hair. It can help in keeping your skin hydrated and moisturized and can keep your hair soft and healthy.
With its several medicinal properties and bacteria fighting capabilities, honey helps in strengthening the immune system. Honey is also helpful to treat a sore throat or a sinus infection.
Another important and rarely known usage of honey is that it is used to help heal burns of partial thickness, post-surgical infected wounds and ulcers related to diabetic foot.
While ghee and honey are individually very beneficial, combining them, especially in equal ratios, may cause certain harmful effects. Dr Reddy said, “The reason behind this is their biochemical composition, honey is made from nectar and ghee is fat. Ghee causes heat and honey is a cooling agent.”
So, on mixing ghee and honey, a bacteria called Clostridium Botulinum releases. This bacteria multiplies and releases toxins that are harmful to the body leading to health issues like stomach aches, and respiratory issues, and can even be poisonous.
Another reason why ghee and honey shouldn’t be taken together is, that honey is a complex polysaccharide and it requires special enzymes for its break up and ghee is a complex chain of fatty acids which requires emulsification then further action of lipase and other lipid breaking enzymes. If taken together, they can interact with one another in our gastro intestine resulting in indigestion and accumulation of free radicals and thereby resulting in health issues, even cancers, said Dr Reddy.
Consume ghee and honey separately to avoid the side effects and enjoy its health benefits of it!