Calories in honey 1 tsp

Calories in honey 1 tsp DEFAULT

Honey Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Honey may seem like a mystical natural health-food, but the truth is, honey is still a concentrated source of sugar. When used in moderation, honey can complement an otherwise healthy eating plan and offer some intriguing benefits. However, honey is not a food that should be overused, especially if you have diabetes. Here's the latest buzz on honey's nutrition facts and scientific research.

Honey Nutrition Facts

The USDA provides the following information for 1 tablespoon (21 grams) of 100% pure bee honey.

  • Calories: 64
  • Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 0mg
  • Carbohydrates: 17g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugars: 17g
  • Protein: 0g


The calories in honey come from carbohydrates, specifically sugar. The sugar in honey is about 50% glucose and 50% fructose. The glycemic index of honey depends on the type that you buy, but sources estimate it to be around 58 with a glycemic load of 12. For comparison, the glycemic index of table sugar (sucrose) is 65.


There is no fat in honey. 


Honey contains trace amounts of protein depending upon the product (up to 0.06g in some honey products), but not enough to contribute to your daily protein requirements.

Vitamins and Minerals

The vitamins and minerals in honey may include B vitamins, calcium, copper, iron, zinc, and others, which are mainly derived from the soil and nectar‐producing plants. The quality of honey and its mineral content are determined by where it is grown and how it is processed. Generally, darker honey provides more beneficial vitamins and minerals than pale honey.

Health Benefits

Certain varieties of honey have been shown to offer promising healing powers. When applying these characteristics to everyday life, it's important to balance the purported health benefits versus the nutritional cost (high sugar content) of honey.

Soothes a Cough

Research suggests honey can help calm a cough. A review of six studies treating coughs in children found that a spoonful of honey suppresses a cough as well as dextromethorphan—the cough suppressant found in Robitussin DM—and better than Benadryl (diphenhydramine) or no treatment. The research also found honey may provide longer relief than Albuterol (salbutamol). 

Promotes Regularity

Studies have demonstrated honey's positive impact on the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). When taken on an empty stomach, raw Manuka honey soothes the stomach and reduces diarrhea and constipation symptoms. Honey reduces the severity and duration of viral diarrhea better than conventional antiviral treatment.

Supports Reproductive Health

A type of honey, called royal jelly, has numerous effects on female reproductive health. Royal jelly has been found to reduce premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and menopausal symptoms. The antioxidants in royal jelly may help reduce oxidative damage associated with the aging of the ovaries. Preliminary animal studies also suggest that royal jelly improves sperm quality for men, and although promising, this effect has yet to be proven in humans.

Aids Wound Healing

Propolis, a component in honey, is made up of 50% resin, 30% wax, 10% essential oils, 5% pollen, and 5% other organic compounds. Propolis suppresses the activity of free radicals and promotes the synthesis of collagen, both beneficial for wound healing. The ability of propolis to promote wound healing is proven effective for diabetic foot ulcers and certain types of acne when used topically.

Reduces Risk of Cancer

Honey impacts the development of cancer during multiple stages of the progression of the disease. Honey has been shown to induce tumor cell apoptosis (cell death), reduce inflammation, and inhibit tumor growth. Although honey is not an effective treatment for cancer in itself, preliminary studies suggest the need for further investigation.


Honey is not a common allergen, however, case studies showing anaphylaxis have been reported. Anaphylaxis from the consumption of honey is an IgE-mediated reaction (a true food allergy). Propolis has been documented as a contact allergen for those involved in the collection of honey. If you suspect an allergy to honey, see your healthcare provider for a full evaluation.

Adverse Effects

The American Academy of Pediatrics advises parents to never give honey to babies during the first year of life as it is a potential source of botulism-causing spores which can lead to severe illness in young babies.

If you are on a low-sugar or low-carbohydrate eating plan for medical reasons, you should limit your intake of honey. Honey is almost pure sugar (carbohydrates). Despite its associated health benefits, honey still raises blood glucose levels and should be accounted for when considering total carbohydrate intake.


There are more than 300 varieties of honey in the United States, each originating from unique flower sources or different climate conditions. Examples include clover honey, wildflower honey, orange blossom honey, buckwheat honey, avocado honey, and alfalfa honey. Honey purchased from the store may be raw or pasteurized.

  • Raw honey comes directly from the beehive and is not processed, heated, or pasteurized.
  • Pasteurized honey is filtered and processed to create a clear-looking product that is easier to package and pour.

Pasteurization may eliminate some of the trace minerals associated with honey's health benefits. If the food label specifies "pure honey," that means no other substances were added during food processing.

When It's Best

For maximum nutrition, choose raw honey from the local farmer's market. If you enjoy the taste of honey, go for the darker varieties, which have a stronger flavor, allowing you to use less of it for the same taste effect. Honey can be found at any time of the year packaged in glass or plastic bottles.

Storage and Food Safety

Raw and processed honey should be stored below 32 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent crystallization and color/aroma changes. Honey is naturally antimicrobial but should be protected from outside moisture. The general recommendation for the shelf-life of honey is two years, however, this can vary. Airtight, sanitized containers help preserve the shelf-life and safety of honey.

How to Prepare

Honey is a versatile sweetener so there are countless ways to use it in the kitchen. However, some cooks struggle when they cook with honey because it can be messy. If you buy a jar of honey (as opposed to a squeeze bottle) spooning honey onto food can be a challenge. Savvy experts recommend that you spray your spoon or measuring cup with cooking spray first so that the honey slides off with no mess and no fuss.

When substituting honey for granulated sugar in recipes, it's important to remember that honey has a stronger flavor, greater acidity, and higher moisture content than sugar. Baking experts recommend using 1/2 to 3/4 cup of honey for each cup of sugar in the recipe, and also reducing the liquid by 1/4 cup for each cup of sugar replaced. In addition, if the recipe does not already include baking soda, add 1/4 teaspoon for each cup of sugar replaced. You should also lower the oven temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit and watch carefully for doneness.


Healthy Honey Recipes to Try

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Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Honey. FoodData Central. 2019.

  2. Cianciosi D, Forbes-Hernández TY, Afrin S, et al. Phenolic Compounds in Honey and Their Associated Health Benefits: A Review. Molecules. 2018;23(9):2322. doi:10.3390/molecules23092322

  3. Oduwole O, Udoh EE, Oyo-Ita A, Meremikwu MM. Honey for acute cough in children. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2018;4:CD007094. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD007094.pub5

  4. Pasupuleti VR, Sammugam L, Ramesh N, Gan SH. Honey, Propolis, and Royal Jelly: A Comprehensive Review of Their Biological Actions and Health Benefits. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2017;2017:1259510. doi:10.1155/2017/1259510

  5. Aguiar R, Duarte FC, Mendes A, Bartolomé B, Barbosa MP. Anaphylaxis caused by honey: A case report. Asia Pac Allergy. 2017;7(1):48-50. doi:10.5415/apallergy.2017.7.1.48

  6. American Academy of Pediatrics. Botulism. Updated November 19, 2018.

  7. National Honey Board. Honey Varietals. 2020.



Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving




% Daily Values*

Total Fat



Saturated Fat



Trans Fat


Polyunsaturated Fat


Monounsaturated Fat








Total Carbohydrate



Dietary Fiber







Vitamin D











Vitamin A



Vitamin C




of RDI*

(64 calories)

3% of RDI

Calorie Breakdown:


Carbohydrate (100%)


Fat (0%)


Protein (0%)


Nutrition summary:









There are 64 calories in 1 tablespoon of Honey.
Calorie breakdown: 0% fat, 100% carbs, 0% protein.

Common Serving Sizes:

Related Types of Honey:

Related Types of Syrup:

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All About the Nutrition and Calories in Honey vs. Sugar

Image Credit: Christian-Fischer/iStock/GettyImages

Honey and sugar are very similar in that they are both natural sweeteners. Honey is produced by bees and is a result of the nectar they collect from flowers, while sugar is a product from sugar cane or beet plants.

Honey's color can range from pale beige to medium and dark amber with corresponding flavor ranges from mild to strong and bold, depending on the type of flower that the bee collected its nectar from.

Nutrition and Calories in Honey

All of the calories in honey come from sugar, which is a type of carb. There is no fat, saturated or otherwise, in honey, according to the USDA.

1 Teaspoon of Honey

  • 12 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 3.3 g carbs
  • 3.3 g sugar
  • 0 g protein

1 Tablespoon of Honey

  • 64 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 17.3 g carbs
  • 17.2 g sugar
  • 0.1 g protein

1 Cup of Honey

  • 1,031 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 279.3 g carbs
  • 278.4 g sugar
  • 1 g protein

Nutrition and Calories in Sugar

All of the calories in sugar come from sugar, which is a type of carb. There is no fat, saturated or otherwise, in sugar, according to the USDA.

Are You Eating Too Much Sugar?

Track your daily nutrients by logging your meals on the MyPlate app. Download now to fine-tune your diet today!

1 Teaspoon of Sugar

  • 16 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 4.2 g carbs
  • 4.2 g sugar
  • 0 g protein

1 Tablespoon of Sugar

  • 55 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 14.2 g carbs
  • 14.1 g sugar
  • 0 g protein

1 Cup of Sugar

  • 774 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 200 g carbs
  • 199.6 g sugar
  • 0 g protein

Honey vs. Sugar: Which Is the Better Sweetener?

Honey contains 24 fewer calories per ounce than sugar, making it one of the best sugar substitutes for calorie counters. Honey is also favored on account of its nutrient content.

One ounce of honey contains 1 percent of the recommended daily value of iron, riboflavin, manganese and copper, while sugar contains no vitamins or minerals.


Amount of Calorie in Honey

What is the amount of calorie in honey? Are there more calories in honey than in table sugar?

One tablespoon (tbs) of honey has 64 calories, and one tablespoon (tbs) of sugar has 46 calories. (Or has 22 calories in one teaspoon (tsp) of honey versus 16 calories in one teaspoon (tsP) of table sugar.) While the amount of calorie in honey is more, we actually use less of it since it is sweeter than table sugar. So, the honey calories consumed for the same quantitiy (tbs or tsp) is less compared with sugar. And for many people, honey is still a preferred healthier choice because of its vitamins and minerals that can aid in digestion, and its anti-oxidants which can also bring health benefits. Remember not all calories are made equal; a calorie is not a calorie. In fact, it is a carbohydrate that is recommended in fasting because of its vitamins content and antioxidants effect.

spoon of honey image

Calories in Honey vs Sugar

Honey contains the same basic sugar units as table sugar -- glucose and fructose. However, granulated table sugar, or sucrose, has glucose and fructose hooked together, whereas in honey, fructose and glucose remain in individual units. Fructose is sweeter than glucose, which is one of the reasons fructose is used in so many food products today. However, fructose does not convert to energy as efficiently as glucose. As a result, processed foods containing granulated sugar high in fructose convert to fat stores more easily than honey.

Raw honey, a natural sweetener, is not subject to any heating or processing and even commercial pasteurized honey has only one processing step involved – heating to prevent crystallization and yeast fermentation during storage, whereas, table sugar is highly processed, whereby all naturally occurring trace minerals from the sugar cane plant are removed, leaving us with "empty calories" which are devoid of nutrition like vitamins, minerals, and important enzymes. That is why ironically, in developed countries, there are way too many overweight people who are suffering from malnutrition!

Replace, Not Add Sugars to Your Diet

Cut down on the simple sugars in your diet by eliminating the chocolate and hard candies. If you simply cannot resist the desire for sweet stuff, replace them with healthy natural sweeteners like honey. Take regular meals with some protein and fat in each, and eat complex carbohydrates that contain ample soluble fiber -- fruits and vegetables for example. Fat, protein and soluble fiber in the diet tend to moderate swings in blood glucose. Other than the concern that excessive intake of sugar and hence calories, could lead to obesity problems, some people have a reaction to sugar called reactive hypoglycemia which is characterized by irritability, nervousness, headache, sweating and confusion a few hours after eating a meal high in simple sugars. These symptoms are caused by the pancreas' overproduction of insulin in response to rising blood glucose levels.


What's a Calorie Counter?

Those who're on diet and watching their weight would probably be very familiar with a calorie counter. It helps us make a daily record of the amount of calorie in honey, bread, soups, fruits, vegetables, and of all the foods we plan to eat. Read in "Using a Calorie Counter to Lose Weight".

A 30g Serving of Cereal has 300 kcal? Or Do You Mean 300 calories?

If "kilo" equates to the amount of "1000" units and 300kcal actually meant 300 000 calories. How logical is that when we know that an adult calorie intake should be around 2000 calories per day? Get your answers in "Know How to Count Calorie?"

How Much Honey Can We Eat Daily?

We all know that nothing in excessive is good. So what is considered too much honey to consume? Get the answers in About Honey - How much honey can I eat every day?

End of "Amount of Calorie in Honey". Back to "Honey vs Sugar".


Tsp honey 1 calories in

How Many Calories in a Teaspoon of Honey?

There are 21.27 calories in a teaspoon of regular honey and 20 calories in a teaspoon of raw honey.

Image Credit: yanjf/iStock/GettyImages

If you have a sweet tooth and want to watch your weight, you may wonder about the amount of calories in honey. A look at this natural sweetener's nutrition, impact on health and potential benefits can help you decide whether to include it in your diet.


There are 21.27 calories in a teaspoon of regular honey and 20 calories in a teaspoon of raw honey.

Nutrition and Calories in Honey

Before adding this sweetener to your diet, consider the calories in honey. According to the USDA, there are 63.8 calories in a tablespoon of regular, or processed, honey.

Since there are three teaspoons in every tablespoon, this works out to just over 21 calories per teaspoon of this sticky sweetener. Honey also contains 17.3 grams of carbohydrates and 17.2 grams of sugar per tablespoon, which is nearly six grams of each per teaspoon.

The USDA reports that raw honey has a similar nutritional profile. There are 60 calories in each tablespoon of raw honey or 20 calories per teaspoon. Raw honey has 17 grams of carbohydrates and 16 grams of sugar per tablespoon.

If you're using one teaspoon of honey, you can work it into your daily calorie count with ease. However, you may need to measure your honey to ensure you stay on track carefully. People all need different amounts of calories based on their goals, activity levels, age, sex and other factors.

Benefits of Honey

There are about 320 different types of honey to satisfy your sweet tooth. While the calories in honey remain about the same, they may contain varying levels of things such as:

  • Amino acids
  • Zinc
  • Minerals
  • Antioxidants
  • Iron

Researchers have looked into how this sweetener may hold properties that fight bacteria, inflammation and free radicals. However, it's important to note that research about honey is difficult to standardize because of the nature of its production. So far, some research has suggested that honey can help:

  • Reduce the risk of heart disease
  • Promote healing in some wounds, especially burns
  • Suppress coughing in people with respiratory infections
  • Fight depression, anxiety and convulsions
  • Relieve some symptoms associated with gastroenteritis

While the uses of honey may be plentiful, never give this substance to infants under one year of age. Even the smallest amount of honey can put babies at risk of botulism. Both raw and processed honey pose this threat.

Honey vs Other Sweeteners

While there may be many benefits of honey in the morning cup of tea, it's important to weigh it against other sweeteners. If you're watching your carbohydrate and sugar intake, you may think about choosing artificial sweeteners instead of honey. The primary forms of artificial sweeteners are sucralose, Splenda and aspartame.

Because artificial sweeteners have no calories or carbohydrates, the Mayo Clinic reports that they may be good choices for people with diabetes. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sets acceptable daily intake limits on these sweeteners and does not recommend them for people with phenylketonuria.

If you plan on using honey to replace table sugar, you may find little or no benefit when it comes to blood sugar and weight loss. The Mayo Clinic reports that honey is sweeter than table sugar, so people may use less in some cases. However, since honey has more calories per teaspoon than sugar, you may not benefit much.

Do You Know How Much Food is 100 Calories?

September is almost over, but guess what? It's National Honey Month! Which means you still have a day and a half to indulge in the sweet stuff without the guilt. Better yet, take the time to appreciate the health benefits of honey.

Not only does honey make your tea taste better, it's also a natural way to sweeten and enhance the flavor of foods (Michelle Obama keeps a honey beehive in the White House garden!). It also helps take the edge off a Sunday morning hangover, or so we hear, and may even combat cancer.

To comb even more super-sweet facts about honey, we spoke to Willow Jarosh and Stephanie Clarke, contributing editors at SELF and co-founders of C&J Nutrition. They told us all about the other awesome health benefits of honey—that is benefits beyond being sweet and delicious. Here are seven things you probably didn't know about honey that will have you singing its sticky praises.

1. It may help beat hangovers

Fructose speeds up the oxidation of alcohol in the liver. Honey is roughly equal parts glucose and fructose, so it has the potential to cause this reaction. However, studies that looked at honey's ability to increase alcohol metabolism are using about 2 ounces of honey (8 tablespoons) per 25 grams of alcohol, which would be about 480 calories worth of honey. We wouldn't recommend consuming that many calories worth of honey in one day.

2. It contains antioxidants

Some types of honey have been found to contain antioxidants (the darker the honey the more antioxidants it typically contains), which can help fight cell damage that may increase the risk for diseases like cancer, heart disease, etc. However, in order to really pack an antioxidant punch, you'd have to consume more than a teaspoon or two of honey; the American Heart Association recommends that most women consume no more than 25 grams or (6 teaspoons) of total added sugar per day (that's about 100 calories worth). While a teaspoon used here and there can provide a small antioxidant bonus, we'd recommend getting antioxidants from more nutritious sources, like fruits and veggies.

3. It may help fight cancer

Preliminary studies on mice show that some types of honey may inhibit cancer cell growth. So far, studies have only been done in mice, so that can't be translated with certainty to humans.

4. It may help heal your cuts and burns

Some research shows that the topical application of honey on minor to moderate wounds may speed up healing.

5. It may ease coughs

Small studies found that children's coughs decreased with given honey. (And it certainly feels soothing going down when your throat is raw from hacking.)

6. It's sweeter than sugar

Per teaspoon, honey contains 20 calories, 5 grams of sugar and no fat. Granulated sugar has 15 calories, 4 grams of sugar and no fat per teaspoon. Honey is slightly sweeter, so you can use a bit less -- so the calories probably are about equivalent to granulated sugar when you account for using less honey.

7. It may help with weight control

We almost always recommend that people buy the plain version of foods and sweeten them themselves using a natural sweetener, so they're able to control the amount of added sugar. But be sure to consume no more than 6 teaspoons (2 tablespoons) of honey per day, and that's if it's the ONLY added sugar you're eating. If you're getting sugar from other sources, make sure your total sugar intake does not top 6 teaspoons.



Similar news:

Is honey better for you than sugar?

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Honey and sugar are two of the most commonly used sweeteners. Honey is often regarded as the more healthful option, but is this really the case?

Both honey and sugar add sweetness to meals and snacks. However, they have different tastes, textures, and nutritional profiles.

This article explores the benefits and disadvantages of both honey and sugar for health and diet.

Similarities and differences

Honey and sugar are both carbohydrates, consisting of the two types of sugar: glucose and fructose.

Refined fructose, which is found in sweeteners, is metabolized by the liver and has been associated with:

Both fructose and glucose are broken down quickly by the body and can cause spikes in blood sugar levels.

The proportions of glucose and fructose in honey and sugar are different:

  • sugar is 50 percent fructose and 50 percent glucose
  • honey contains 40 percent fructose and 30 percent glucose

The remainder of honey consists of:

These additional components may be responsible for some of the health benefits of honey.

Sugar is higher on the glycemic index (GI) than honey, meaning it raises blood sugar levels more quickly. This is due to its higher fructose content, and the absence of trace minerals.

But honey has slightly more calories than sugar, although it is sweeter, so less may be required. Both sweeteners can lead to weight gain if overused.

Benefits of honey

Honey has been used since ancient times as both a sweetener and medicine.

It is a viscous liquid produced by honeybees and ranges in color from straw yellow to dark brown. The bees collect nectar from flowers and mix it with enzymes to form honey before storing it in honeycomb cells to keep it fresh.

Honey is associated with several benefits:

More nutrients and less processed than sugar

Honey varies in its nutritional composition based on the origin of the nectar used to make it. In general, it contains trace amounts of local pollen along with other substances, such as:

Some research indicates that dark honey has more antioxidants than light honey.

Also, honey is less processed than sugar as it is usually only pasteurized before use. Raw honey is also edible and contains more antioxidants and enzymes than pasteurized varieties.

Cough suppressant

Some research suggests that honey is a natural way to ease a cough in children.

A found that children with bronchitis who were given dark honey experienced greater symptom relief than those taking a placebo. However, the benefits were small.

More recent suggests that honey is better than no treatment at all for a cough, although some medications provide greater symptom relief.

Allergy relief

Anecdotal reports indicate that locally-produced honey may help reduce seasonal allergy symptoms. However, clinical studies have not demonstrated this consistently.

One study published in 2011, found that people with birch pollen allergy, who took birch pollen honey, experienced:

  • a 60 percent reduction in symptoms
  • 70 percent fewer days with severe symptoms
  • twice as many days without symptoms

They were also able to reduce their antihistamine intake by 50 percent compared to the control group.

These benefits may have been compounded by honey’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.

Also, one treatment for allergies is to desensitize the body to reactions by repeatedly introducing small amounts of allergens. In line with this, local honey may contain traces of the pollens that cause seasonal allergies.

Topical use

Honey has shown benefits when applied topically, as it has antimicrobial properties:

  • Wound healing: suggests that honey offers considerable benefits in the natural and safe treatment of chronic wounds, ulcers, and burns.
  • Seborrheic dermatitis: Raw honey was to markedly improve seborrheic dermatitis, which is an itchy and flaky scalp condition. Weekly application of honey also reduced hair loss associated with the condition and prevented relapses among study participants.

Easier to digest

Honey may be easier than sugar on the digestive system.

Due to its composition, regular sugar has to be ingested before being broken down. As bees add enzymes to honey, the sugars are already partially broken down, making it easier to digest.

A variety of honey products are available for purchase online.

Disadvantages and risks of honey

Some of the most common disadvantages and risks associated with honey include:

High calorie count

One tablespoon of honey contains 64 calories, which is higher than that of sugar at 49 calories per tablespoon.

Risk of infant botulism

It is not safe to give honey to infants younger than 12 months. Honey’s bacterial spores can cause infant botulism, a rare but potentially life-threatening disease.

The spores that cause botulism in infants are harmless in older children and adults. Symptoms of infant botulism include:

Impact on blood sugar and risk of illness

Honey has similar effects as sugar on blood glucose levels. This is especially problematic for people with diabetes and insulin resistance.

Too much honey can lead to blood sugar issues in healthy people too, increasing the risk of:

Benefits of sugar

Sugar comes from sugarcane or sugar beet. Although it is derived from natural substances, sugar needs a lot of processing before it becomes the finalized product.

There are several different types of sugar including:

  • brown
  • muscovado
  • powdered
  • raw
  • turbinado
  • white

All these forms of sugar comprise glucose and fructose, which bond to form the sugar known as sucrose.

Sugar has no added nutrients. However, brown sugar, which is a blend of white sugar and the byproduct of sugar manufacturing known as molasses, may have some trace minerals.

The main benefits associated with sugar use include:

Lower in calories than honey

Sugar contains 49 calories per tablespoon, while honey has 64. However, honey is sweeter than sugar, so less may be needed to achieve the same sweetness.

Low-cost and long shelf life

Sugar is cheap, easily accessible, and has a long shelf life. It also makes many foods more palatable, and so, it is an attractive store cupboard staple.

Disadvantages and risks of sugar

There are some disadvantages and risks associated with sugar consumption.

Higher on the glycemic index than honey

Sugar can spike blood glucose levels faster than honey. This leads to a quick spurt of energy, followed by a sharp decline characterized by tiredness, headaches, and difficulty concentrating.

Increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes

Weight gain and obesity are associated with high sugar consumption, increasing the risk of illness.

More problems for the liver

Since the liver must metabolize refined fructose, issues relating to liver function may occur with high sugar intake. These include:

  • nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
  • cholesterol management
  • obesity


Dental caries or cavities develop faster and in more teeth with a high sugar diet.

This is true for everyone. Sugar should be avoided to reduce the risk of cavities.

Changes in gut bacteria

A high sugar diet is associated with less healthy and gut bacteria diversity. It may also increase the risk of chronic diseases.

More difficult to digest than honey

As previously said, sugar does not contain the enzymes that honey does, so is more difficult to digest.

Which is best?

It is possible to consume too much of both honey and sugar. The risks of overconsumption are the same for both, as well. The main concerns are:

  • weight gain
  • increased risk of illness
  • blood sugar peaks and crashes
  • increased risk of tooth decay

Therefore, both products should be used in moderation or not at all. While honey does have some health benefits, they are mostly observed when used in response to specific issues, such as a cough or allergies, or when used topically, which does not affect blood sugar levels.

If opting for honey over sugar, choose dark, raw varieties, which contain more nutrients, enzymes, and antioxidants.

Cutting down

The (AHA) suggest that women consume no more than 100 calories a day from sugar (approximately 6 teaspoons) and men have no more than 150 calories per day (9 teaspoons).

It is important to note these amounts take into account sugars already added to processed and pre-packaged foods, as well as all types of sugars, including honey and syrups.

Tips for cutting down on sugar and honey intake include:

  • Cut portions in half: Use a half spoon of honey or sugar in drinks and on cereals instead of a full spoon.
  • Reduce sugar in baking by one-third: This reduces intake without having a big impact on flavor or texture.
  • Use extracts or sweet spices: Extracts such as almond or vanilla can provide a sweet flavor to smoothies or baked goods without increasing sugar intake. Ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg are examples of sweet spices that can add sweetness without calories.
  • Substitute unsweetened applesauce or mashed banana: These natural fruit purees can be substituted for sugar in equal amounts in baking and other recipes.
  • Satisfy sweet cravings with fruit: Fresh berries, bananas, mango, and other fruits can satisfy a sweet tooth without the need to turn to sugar. Fruit canned in water is also a good choice. Avoid fruit canned in syrup.

Alternative sweeteners are not recommended to reduce sugar intake. These are known as non-nutritive sweeteners.

Examples include aspartame, saccharin, and sucralose. Though the FDA reports these sweeteners are safe to use, recent research reveals they can:

  • increase sugar cravings
  • cause disruption to gut bacteria
  • indirectly affect insulin sensitivity

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