Skip to main content

Mind Your Beeswax - Honey’s amazing healthful properties

Jun 22, 2015 08:43AM ● Published by Cory Batelaan

Honey’s amazing healthful properties

By Nanci Theoret

Said to treat coughs and dandruff, stave off bacteria and even help with a hangover, honey just might be the “bee-all” among the superfoods. All natural, sweet and delicious on biscuits and in baklava, this nectar is truly the bee’s knees with 8,000 years of documented medicinal use and mounting research continuing to extol its virtues for many things that might ail you.

“Honey is a functional food that helps build the body in a natural way,” says Betsy Opyt, a Fort Myers nutritionist, dietitian and wellness coach. “It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, extra vitamins and 18 amino acids. It can help those of us who struggle with joint issues.”

About the only honey claim scientists have debunked is its ability to help allergies.

Honey-and-cinnamonFlorida was the number three honey-producing state in 2012. Sunshine State apiarists such as Allen Walker harvest different varieties of honey year-round depending on what’s in bloom. Walker sets beehives within a 50-mile radius of his North Fort Myers farm to yield orange blossom, saw palmetto, wildflower and mangrove honey. It’s sold at the Walker Farms store (on the appropriately named Bee Chamber Lane), online and at local grocery stores from Naples to Venice.

Walker Farms occasionally sells tupelo, a premium honey produced from the white ogeechee tupelo tree, which blooms in April and May along river valley basins and swamps in northwest Florida and southern Georgia. Light golden amber, tupelo is thick and sweet with a hint of molasses.

Walker’s personal favorite is saw palmetto. “It’s the biggest and best in the south,” he says. “It has a smoky molasses taste and is great in sauces.”

Opyt believes so much in the power of honey, she has incorporated it into her line of Betsy’s Best nut butters sold in all Whole Foods stores in Florida, and Ada’s Natural Market and the Skinny Pantry in Fort Myers. Cinnamon paired with honey amplifies the anti-inflammatory health benefits, she says.

Walker swears a spoonful of honey taken 30 minutes before bedtime improves sleep by stabilizing blood-sugar levels through the night.

Southwest Florida travel, luxury lifestyle and food writer Nanci Theoret contributes regularly to several regional publications. The former daily newspaper reporter and magazine editor has been recognized for her writing and photography by the Florida and Kentucky press associations.

Florida was the number three honey-producing state in 2012.

Health+Beauty featured
  • Sunday Farmers Market

    09/24/2017
    08:30AM — 01:00PM

    Meet in the Historic Settlement of Koreshan State Historic Site at our quaint market EVERY SUNDAY...


  • FineMark Exhibtion of FGCU Art Alumni

    09/24/2017
    09:00AM — 04:00PM

    From July 10 - September 29, 2017, Finemark National Bank and Trust will be displaying the work o...


  • Explore the Koreshan Unity Settlement Historic District, listed on the National Register of Histo...


  • Family Day at Millennial Brewing

    09/24/2017
    12:00PM — 05:00PM

    We have the perfect place to grab some food and a drink while the kids play, meet new friends, an...


  • Drawing I & II

    09/24/2017
    02:00PM — 04:00PM

    This class is for beginners and for those who have previously taken Drawing I. We will also revis...


  • SPECIAL TIME!!! HAPPY HOUR and Doors OPEN at 4:45pm, GAME Starts at 5:30pm SPECIAL MILITARY RA...


  • "ALOHA" FAASWFL Hawaiian Night

    09/24/2017
    06:00PM — 10:00PM

    The Filipino American Association of SWFL proudly presents it' Annual ALOHA Hawaiian Night on Sep...


  • FineMark Exhibtion of FGCU Art Alumni

    09/25/2017
    09:00AM — 04:00PM

    From July 10 - September 29, 2017, Finemark National Bank and Trust will be displaying the work o...


  • Sanibel Shell Crafters

    09/25/2017
    10:00AM — 03:00PM

    Visit The Sanibel Shell Crafters every Monday all year long from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. to watch this d...


  • Mangrove Maze Eco-Tour

    09/25/2017
    10:00AM

    Guided exploration of the mangrove wilderness on part of the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail....


  • Mirror, Mirror... Exhibition

    09/25/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Mirror, Mirror… September 1 - 28, 2017 Opening Reception: Friday, September 1, 2017, 6pm-8pm C...


  • Sunset Kayak Eco-Tour

    09/25/2017
    03:30PM

    Paddle Matlacha Pass meandering through mangrove shrouded trails. Guides are ACA Certified Kayak ...


  • Complete original art while enjoying friends, music and favorite beverages. Materials provided, o...


  • Ballroom Dancing

    09/25/2017
    06:30PM — 09:30PM

    USA Dance offers beginning Ballroom Dance Lessons and a Social Dance on Monday nights. The lesson...


  • Caloosahatchee Sunset Cruise

    09/25/2017
    07:00PM

    Relaxing environment as the sun is setting, the shoreline and river elements taking on a differen...


  • FineMark Exhibtion of FGCU Art Alumni

    09/27/2017
    09:00AM — 04:00PM

    From July 10 - September 29, 2017, Finemark National Bank and Trust will be displaying the work o...


  • Open Painting at The Paint Escape

    09/27/2017
    10:00AM — 06:00PM

    Ceramic painting for children and adults, create a decorative item. Friday night offers ladie...


  • Mangrove Maze Eco-Tour

    09/27/2017
    10:00AM

    Guided exploration of the mangrove wilderness on part of the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail....


  • Mirror, Mirror... Exhibition

    09/27/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Mirror, Mirror… September 1 - 28, 2017 Opening Reception: Friday, September 1, 2017, 6pm-8pm C...


  • Sunset Kayak Eco-Tour

    09/27/2017
    03:30PM

    Paddle Matlacha Pass meandering through mangrove shrouded trails. Guides are ACA Certified Kayak ...


  • Complete original art while enjoying friends, music and favorite beverages. Materials provided, o...


  • Open Mic Night at The French Press

    09/27/2017
    06:30PM — 09:30PM

    Grab your instrument, warm up your voice, Wednesdays from 6:30- 9:30pm.


  • Caloosahatchee Sunset Cruise

    09/27/2017
    07:00PM

    Relaxing environment as the sun is setting, the shoreline and river elements taking on a differen...


  • Haunted History Tour

    09/27/2017
    08:00PM

    90-minute walk through downtown Fort Myers reveals a darker side, including stories of both resid...


Proudly Brought To You By These Community Sponsors