There are a lot of natural “helpers” that can boost your weight loss, and one commonly suggested aid is honey. Is honey good for weight loss? Or is it just another diet myth?
To lose weight, you need to reduce your overall caloric intake and increase your activity level to burn more calories. When you create a “calorie deficit” so you are burning more calories than you take in each day, you lose weight. Following this formula, it’s very possible to include honey in your daily diet and still lose weight. As long as you keep your calories in the correct range to result in weight loss, no problem.
But does honey actually CAUSE weight loss on its own? Some nutritionists and natural health enthusiasts say yes.
The benefits lie in the amino acids, minerals, vitamins and antioxidants found in honey, which provide numerous health benefits. Honey has long been used as a natural medicinal remedy to treat allergies, coughs, cuts and burns, fatigue and anxiety. Table sugar, on the other hand is completely devoid of nutrients. Honey is also more easily digestible than sugar, which makes it a beneficial source of carbohydrate energy.
When considering whether honey is good for weight loss, it’s important to consider two things:
Honey is higher in calories than sugar. One tablespoon of honey has 60 calories, while one tablespoon of granulated sugar has 45 calories. However, honey definitely has a stronger, sweeter taste than sugar, so you’ll probably need to use less of it.
2) Glycemic Index
Surprisingly, honey has a lower glycemic index value than sugar.
The glycemic index measures the impact of specific foods on blood sugar levels. The higher the GI value of a food, the higher the rise in blood glucose that results. If you eat too many high GI foods, you have consistently high blood sugar levels, which causes your body to keep releasing insulin to process the sugar. High insulin levels in the bloodstream have been tied to obesity and other chronic health conditions. For this reason, eating predominantly low-glycemic foods has been proven to help with weight loss and general health improvement.
A GI value of 0-55 is considered low, 56-69 is medium, and 70 and above is high glycemic.
Honey has a GI value of 55, while granulated sugar has a GI value of 68. So it does appear that honey is good for weight loss, compared to sugar.
Just keep in mind that moderation is the key. Honey may be good for weight loss in some respects, but if you eat too much of it you may end up gaining weight instead of losing it.