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Many Uses for Honey for Beauty, Cooking & more! #BenefitsofHoney Plus Mexican Mocha Coffee Creamer Recipe!

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Mexican Mocha Creamer

We have been in the process of finding more ways to live a healthier lifestyle by using less processed ingredients & sugars, using more natural products around our home, as well more natural products for our bodies.  We have been using honey more as a natural sweetener in things like smoothies, greek yogurt berry parfaits and baking, but I was surprised to learn about the other important ways that honey can benefit us in our daily lives.

I had the opportunity to attend an event put on by the National Honey Board last week at the Seattle Art Museum, which was very enlightening for me and inspired me to find many more ways to incorporate honey usage into our daily lives as honey is such a versatile staple to have on hand in your home.

Honey Varietals

I was also surprised to learn that there are over 300 varietals of honey! Did you have any idea there were so many different kinds? We only typically see a few varietals in the stores, but if you’re interested in some unique varietals, then check out the Honey.com website where they have a Honey Locator to find which locations near you may offer different varietals you’re interested in. I got to try several different varieties & found that I loved the Orange Blossom & Alfalfa varietals, but it will all depend on your preference for sure. I think it would be fun to have a get-together where you offer different varietals of honey for folks to try with different kinds of cheeses & crackers as part of the appetizers. They call these “Honey Tasting Parties” and it’s fun to see which are the favorite flavors.

Benefits of Using Honey::

Natural Cough Suppressant:

I was most interested in finding out more details about honey as a natural cough suppressant as both of my kiddos had been sick the last two weeks with a bad cold and cough. When I called the Nurse Helpline at our doctor’s office for tips on helping my kids feel better since they were both so miserable, one of the tips the nurse shared was to have my daughter to eat a spoonful of honey or put a spoonful of honey in a warm liquid like tea or even warm apple juice. This is something I have long heard from my grandma (also a nurse), but I wondered about how effective it was compared to cough suppressants.   I talked with Nurse Barb Dehn, who was at the National Honey Board event, to find out more about this and she shared that research has shown that a small dose of buckwheat honey was more effective than over the counter cough suppressants for nighttime cough relief & sleeping. We really try to use any over-the-counter medications sparingly and have been actively searching out natural options in place of medications, so I love that such a basic staple like honey is something we could use to help relieve the uncomfortableness associated with a cough & help our kids sleep better at night when they are struggling with that cough that just won’t end.  {Just remember that honey shouldn’t be given to a child under the age of 1}

Nurse Barb was so informative & helpful & you’ll definitely want to check out the Honey.com website with more recipes for using honey as a cough suppressant.  She shared a recipe she created for a Honey Cough Syrup (all natural) if you want to try this for your kids to drink, too.  You can then make this into a “Coughsicle” as she called it – the recipe is below.

Coughsicle Recipe from Nurse Barb:

1/2 cup of  Honey Cough Syrup recipe on the Honey.com website

1 1/2 cups of water

Mix them together and pour into a popsicle mold (or any cup where you put a stick in to become the popsicle stick). Freeze the popsicle and then kids can enjoy this. I love this tip as not only are you getting your kids to try this honey cough syrup to help with the colds, but when your kiddos are sick, sometimes the only way to get enough liquid in them to keep them from getting dehydrated is with popsicles so this is a healthier version & soothing for kids, too. I am definitely trying this Coughsicle recipe the next time my kids get sick – or even if my husband or I get a bad cough as it sounds so refreshing.

Natural Energy Booster:

Honey as Natural Energy Booster

Did you know that one tablespoon of honey has 17 grams of carbohydrates & 64 calories, which will give you a quick burst of energy. They suggested that you could bring honey sticks with you to the gym or the next time you exercise and add it to your water bottle. Or if you need a pick-me-up in the afternoon, just squirt a little honey in your beverage (hot or cold) to wake up at work to finish your day off strong.

Beauty Moisturizer:

Another use for honey that was new to me is that it acts as a natural humectant (meaning it helps to attract & retain moisture), which makes it a versatile & valuable option to use in your beauty regimes. By adding honey into your daily beauty routine, it will help to lock in the moisture in your skin. This can then help to keep your skin hydrated. As someone who has very sensitive skin, it’s important to me to find beauty products that are not going to upset my skin & honey is also an anti-irritant so that it won’t be too harsh for my skin. Plus the fact that you can make DIY beauty products using all natural products, with honey as the main ingredient & moisturizer, means that I can feel good about what I’m putting on my face or on my girls’ faces as they get older. If you already have beauty products that you love, you could just keep a bottle of honey in your bathroom & add a drop of honey to the moisturizer, soap, shampoo, etc that you use regularly, for an added bit of moisturizer. It’s as simple as that. Or you could make your own DIY beauty products to use at home. You can check out some recipes on Honey.com’s website with a conditioner, exfoliator & more.

Honey Grapefruit Scrub

We made a little DIY beauty scrub at the event to take home with just a few simple ingredients – items that you could easily have on hand to create yourself. Here’s the recipe below:

Honey Grapefruit Salt Scrub:

  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp fresh grapefruit juice
  • 2 tbsps olive oil or coconut oil (we used olive oil but I think personally I will try it with coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup sea salt

Directions:

Whisk honey & juice together in a small mixing bowl. While whisking continuously, add oil in slow, steady stream. Add sea salt & mix well. Keep refrigerated until use. Scrub  is best used within 1-3 days of creation & can be stored 3-5 days.

Natural Sweetener for Food:

Of course the most popular use of honey is to use it in cooking & baking and as a natural sweetener in foods.  There are so many ways to use honey in foods such as within sauces, marinades & salad dressings, where you can substitute honey for up to half the sweetener. When you bake with honey, you’ll need to reduce any added liquid by 1/4 cup, add 1/2 tsp baking soda 7 reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit.

Honey is also great as an alternative to sugar in your coffee – just add a spoonful of honey with your half & half cream to sweeten your coffee in the mornings (bonus – it will give you that extra natural energy boost as well!). I love to have a spoonful of honey mixed in with greek yogurt, berries & granola for a power breakfast.

Mexican Mocha Coffee Creamer Recipe with Honey:

Mexican Mocha Creamer with Honey

We wanted to share a favorite coffee creamer recipe that uses honey as an alternative to the non-dairy creamers (filled with a lot of preservatives) in an effort to use ingredients that are less processed & more real foods. This will not taste the same as flavored creamers…the taste is much more subtle with the combination of spices & flavorings. It is definitely not as sweet as flavored creamers if you prefer that extra sweetness, but knowing what you are putting into your coffee & your body makes it an ideal creamer to use, especially using a natural sweetener like honey. You can always adjust this recipe to taste, too, & add more or less of items to get the desired taste for you.

Ingredients/Directions:

  • 4 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 tbsp raw honey (you can use any type of honey for this)
  • 1/2 tsp of real vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional if you’d like a little extra zing!)
  • 2 cups of organic half & half cream

Mix all of these ingredients together in a sauce pan & warm over the stove on medium low heat. Stir until well blended and then store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week to use as your coffee creamer. We use a heaping tablespoon of this coffee creamer  in a cup of coffee, but you’ll want to test it out to taste to see how you like it.

What are your favorite ways to use honey in your home? We’d love to hear more ideas of ways you use honey! 

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by the National Board of Honey and the Motherhood. However, all opinions and pictures are my own. See our disclosure policy for more information. 

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