Raw honey is a thick, golden liquid that is pure, unfiltered, natural sweetener made by bees from the nectar of certain flowers. Nectar is a sweet juice which, when taken from a flower, is stored in the stomach of a bee.
When it comes to comparing raw honey to brown sugar, there are several factors to consider. Although both contain glucose and fructose, sugar loses much of its natural sweetness during processing.
To digest honey, our bodies don’t need as many resources as sugar. Sucrose (sugar) is made up of two molecules, glucose and fructose. Before our body can use them as energy, it has to break these molecules into pieces using enzymes. However, with honey, things are slightly different. When bees store honey in their stomach, a special enzyme is added to the nectar to separate the two molecules.
How and when to consume honey on a ketogenic diet
Since it is made up of two sugar molecules, you might guess that raw honey may differ slightly in its carbohydrate content. One tablespoon of raw honey contains 64 calories and 17 grams of net carbs, 16 of which come from sugar.
However, that doesn’t mean that raw honey can’t provide you with essential nutrients. These include vitamin B6, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc.
Replacing traditional table sugar with raw honey as a sweetener has been shown to provide some health benefits. Some of these benefits include maintaining a healthy weight, providing a powerful source of energy, significantly increasing antioxidants, promoting a restful night’s sleep, wound healing, antibacterial effects, and preventing the possibility of diabetes.
However, while honey beats more traditional sweeteners in terms of health benefits it, unfortunately, contains too many natural carbohydrates and sugars. The only way to make it part of the keto diet is as follows:
- Follow a targeted ketogenic diet and eat honey before or after training.
This is a type of keto diet designed for more active people who require more carbohydrates. Allows 20 to 50 grams of extra carbs an hour before or after a workout.
- Follow a cyclical ketogenic diet and eat honey during your carb days.
- It is another form of diet that suggests sticking to the standard ketogenic diet for 5 days and “carbs” for 1-2 days. This means that you eat a low-calorie, high-carbohydrate diet 24 to 48 hours a week to fully replenish your 400 to 600 gram glycogen stores. However, this diet is only recommended for athletes or individuals who train at such high intensity that they absolutely need this serving of carbohydrates.
- The intake of carbohydrates during the day, including honey, does not exceed 50 grams.
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