International Journal of Food and Nutritional Science
Physico-Chemical and Physiological Values of Honey and Its Importance as a Functional Food
Department of Human Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna 800001, Kaduna State, Nigeria
Abdulwahid Ajibola, Department of Human Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna 800001, Kaduna State, Nigeria, Tel: 234 8037803988, 234 8055218256; E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ajibola, A. Physico-Chemical and Physiological Values of Honey and Its Importance as a Functional Food. (2015) Int J Food Nutr Sci 2(2): 180-188.
© 2015 Ajibola, A. This is an Open access article distributed under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
KeywordsHoney; Nutraceutical; Phytochemical; Functional food; Medicine; Sweetener
Honey is classified based on processing, and has physical, chemical and nutritional properties. It has wide acceptability as a complementary and alternative medicine, with extensive use for all human ailments including cancer. The medicinal potency of honey evolved from its biochemical activities and effects as a functional food. Honey contains all the six classes of dietary requirement of food, and can go for a complete meal. The availability of honey in natural state, its influence on physiological processes in all organs and provision of additional health benefits beyond nourishment gives it more recognition as a functional food. The inclusion of honey in infant and children diets, and use as food sweetener is nutritionally rewarding. The presence of several nutraceuticals, phytochemicals and other bioactive substances exerts influence on blood chemistry and body metabolism of honey consumers. This enhances biochemical activities, with consequent physiological modifications in the body. The bioactive substances in honey interact uniquely and work in synergy to give synergistic multiple ingredients factor. This factor helps honey to influence vital processes of the body, covering virtually all organs within the organism. The beneficial effects of honey as a medicinal agent are attributed to its significance as a functional food.