The Sweet Food That Kills Dangerous Bacteria

An increasing number of infectious bacteria that are killing people can’t be treated with antibiotics. But research shows the solution to this menace may be a sweet food that’s sitting innocently on your kitchen counter.

“The unique property of honey lies in its ability to fight infection on multiple levels, making it more difficult for bacteria to develop resistance,” says researcher Susan M. Meschwitz.

Meschwitz explains that honey is the source of several biological weapons that attack bacteria: hydrogen peroxide, acidity, osmotic effects, high sugar concentration and polyphenols (natural chemicals). All of these items destroy harmful bacteria.

The osmotic effect, Meschwitz says, occurs because of honey’s high sugar concentration. That concentration takes water out of bacterial cells so that they dehydrate and die.

“Several studies have demonstrated a correlation between the non-peroxide antimicrobial and antioxidant activities of honey and the presence of honey phenolics,” Meschwitz says.

Many lab and a few limited clinical studies confirm the broad-spectrum antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties of honey.

Beneficial chemicals called phenolics found in honey include phenolic acids like caffeic acid, p-coumaric acid and ellagic acid. Honey also contains the flavonoids quercetin, apigenin, galangin, pinocembrin, kaempferol, luteolin and chrysin.

 

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Carl Lowe

By Carl Lowe

has written about health, fitness and nutrition for a wide range of publications including Prevention Magazine, Self Magazine and Time-Life Books. The author of more than a dozen books, he has been gluten-free since 2007.