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This Sweetener May Help Lower Blood Sugar and Cholesterol Levels

April 17, 2023

Not only does raw honey taste good, but it also may (quite literally) be the bee’s knees for your health.

According to new research, honey – especially Robinia, clover and unprocessed raw honey – can improve blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

“There may be benefits of adding honey and natural sweeteners to your already healthy diet,” says Taimur Habib, MD, a Fairfield internist.

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Diet vs. blood sugar and cholesterol levels

Most foods we eat have sugars and fat in them. And that sugar and fat affects the glucose and cholesterol levels in our blood.

Typically, the glucose spike caused by sugar is only temporary because our bodies produce more insulin. This, in turn, decreases glucose levels.

“However, consistently eating an excessive amount of sugars and fats can cause weight gain. Weight gain leads to resistance in our body’s response to insulin which can result in persistently elevated glucose levels and, potentially, diabetes,” explains Dr. Habib.

A diet low in refined sugars and saturated fat plus regular exercise keeps blood sugar and cholesterol levels low.

> Related: These 3 Drinks Help Keep Your Blood Sugar Balanced

Swap refined sugars out for honey

If you typically eat refined sugars, like granulated sugar or corn syrup, it may be time to swap them out for honey or natural sweeteners.

“Natural sweeteners, like sugars found in fruits, are better for us because they don’t raise our glucose levels as much and don’t lead to the same extent of weight gain as refined sugars would,” explains Dr. Habib.

An added bonus – studies show that small amounts of honey give your immune system a boost along with other health benefits.

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Too much sugar of any kind is harmful

For most people not living with diabetes, Dr. Habib considers a couple of teaspoons of honey a day a healthy amount. Excess of any type of sugar, including honey, can have harmful effects.

“Because research shows beneficial effects in raising good cholesterol and, potentially, lowering glucose and bad cholesterol levels, it is worth trying,” adds Dr. Habib.

And it tastes delicious, too.