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Is Honey Good For You? Nope, Not Really. Few Honey Benefits.
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Is Honey Good For You? Nope, Not Really. Few Honey Benefits.

There is no nutrition in store bought honey. Honey is SUGAR.

Nurse Mia Ross questions her daily honey habit and asks, “Is honey good for you?”  Nope, not really.  Few honey benefits.


I am an honest person, so I will confess that I love honey.  Growing up, my neighbor kept honeybees in his backyard and every so often he would bring over a piece of honeycomb for me to devour.  I grew to admire the work of the honeybee and understand its importance in the realm of pollination and agriculture.

As a nurse, I have a slight problem when honey is touted as an indigestible medical treatment.  When honey is consumed, enzymes in the mouth and acid in the stomach negate any anti-tumor, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial benefits that are thought to exist.  The truth is, store-bought honey has not been shown to have any significant medicinal benefits nor does it contain any nutrients.  Research shows that honey slightly lowers the frequency and duration of coughing fits in children* and adolescents.  It has also been shown to  minimally decrease wound healing time when applied to the skin.

Honey is SUGAR.  It may look different than its crystallized counterpart, but don’t be fooled.  Both honey and sugar pose the same health risks; excess sugar consumption is linked to metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance and, now, hypertension.

One tablespoon of honey has approximately 65 calories and 17 grams of carbs.  Sigh.  I’ve had to abort my daily tea and honey habit.  Now, I keep it in my kitchen cabinet** and use it sparingly.  I want to believe that honey will make me invincible (trust me, I would put it on absolutely everything), but there aren’t significant health benefits to justify my behavior.



*Children under 1 year of age run the risk of acquiring infantile botulism from a bacteria that often contaminates honey.

**Honey NEVER expires!


  • Avatar Helen Fowler says:

    Interesting article. Always thought honey was a common aid for the common cough. I don’t like honey so now I won’t feel guilty about not trying it. Thanks Mia!

  • Avatar Alice @ Honestly Fitness says:

    Hi Mia!
    Okay, so not disputing the fact that honey is sugar and laden with carbs and calories. However, if one had to choose a sugar, would you say that this is the ‘best’ choice in terms of the minerals and vitamins it has? Would love your thoughts on this!

    • Mia Ross BSN RN Mia Ross BSN RN says:

      Great question, Alice! We all need a little sugar sometimes and honey is my personal go-to. Honey is less processed than refined sugar or agave. There is some data that shows bee pollen (which is not usually present in store-bought honey) contains B-vitamins, amino acids, fatty acids and trace minerals. However, it seems that these nutrients are more beneficial to the health of bees than for the health of humans. More research is needed to confirm. Until then, I choose honey to cure my occasion sweet cravings.

  • Avatar Paulie T says:

    This makes me sad.

  • Avatar Paulie T says:

    BUT there is far too much variation in “honey” to even begin to make rash statements like this. And I couldn’t find any actual evidence for the claims in this article…Is there another source perhaps?

    • Mia Ross BSN RN Mia Ross BSN RN says:

      Thanks for the comments!

      Have you try to click on the links embedded in the article? They are abstracts from various scientific journals. Email me for the full-length articles. You’re right, though, there are many different types of honey and that is not necessarily delineated within the research studies. I know there is also controversy regarding the purity of most store-bought honey. Regardless, as of now, there is no medical data suggesting that honey is worth the calories or high sugar content. With our nation’s growing obesity and diabetes epidemic, it’s best that people do not consider honey as a reasonable substitute for sugar and should instead concentrate on limiting quantities of both.

  • Avatar Wendy R. West says:

    Hi Mia,
    Great post but I think honey still have many good usage like for our skin?

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