Manuka honey is a well-known superfood, but just how good is its nutritional profile?
As expected, the vitamins and minerals found in manuka honey are more abundant than in regular table honeys.
Why is this important?
It's quite simple - vitamins and minerals are the nutrients our bodies need to flourish.
Vitamins and minerals are responsible for everything your body does to stay healthy - regenerating cells, immune function, healing wounds, growing muscle, hair, nails, fighting disease, generating energy and so on.
Without the essential vitamins and minerals, we would slowly whither away and die!
Thankfully, manuka honey on its own contains a majority of the essential vitamins and minerals we need to survive and thrive!
What are the essential vitamins and minerals?
There are 13 essential vitamins and 14 essential minerals .
What's the difference between a vitamin and mineral?
Vitamins are organic compounds found in animals (like us!) and plants, whereas minerals are inorganic compounds, meaning you can only get them from the earth.
You can get both from food sources, and we need both to survive.
It's always a good idea to try and eat foods that are dense in vitamins and minerals, such as whole foods, rather than foods that are low in vitamins and minerals, such as processed foods.
For example, an apple or an egg will contain far more vitamins and minerals than a cracker or an Oreo!
How does manuka honey stack up?
Below is a list of all the essential vitamins and minerals, and the ones contained in manuka honey are bolded in orange.
Vitamin A (Retinol)
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid)
Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
Vitamin B7 (Biotin)
Vitamin B9 (Folate)
Vitamin B12 (Hydroxocobalamin)
Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)
Vitamin D (Cholecalciferol)
Vitamin E (Tocopherols/Tocotrienols)
Vitamin K (Phylloquinone)
Manuka honey contains 8/13 essential vitamins and 10/14 essential minerals, which is nearly 70% of all essential vitamins and minerals in just one food.
It means just a simple spoonful each morning or night (or both!) will be packed with nutrients that will help you reach your daily nutritional requirements.
It's one of the most nutritious foods we can eat, and tastes delicious too.
Beyond Vitamins And Minerals - A True Superfood
Not only does manuka honey have an excellent nutrient profile, it also contains many other benefits for our health.
Manuka honey is still being studied, but as of now we know it has around 2,000 unique compounds, most of which are not found in regular honey.
The most well-known of these is methylglyoxal, which is a powerful antibacterial compound that helps our bodies fight off harmful infections and bacteria, even those which have developed antibiotic resistance.
It also has strong anti-inflammatory compounds which help with a variety of common ailments in humans, from joint pain to digestion.
You can read more about the many benefits of manuka honey here.
A nutritional sweetener
If you have a sweet tooth, manuka honey can be a fantastic substitute to improve your daily diet and nutrition.
While regular table sugar contains practically 100% sucrose, manuka honey has a more varied profile of glucose, fructose, phenolics, vitamins and minerals, sucrose, oligosaccharides and proteins.
Not to mention, it has all those beneficial compounds we mentioned earlier.
It's an easy and affordable way to not give up your sweet treats, but to indulge in a healthier, more nutritious way.
Honey is truly nature's sweetener, a superfood we've known about for millennia dating back to the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians and beyond - and can be eaten straight from the hive, exactly as mother nature made it.
If you're looking to improve your daily diet and begin your journey to health, manuka honey is a great way to start.
If you're looking for a recommendation for your first jar, we're huge fans of the team over at New Zealand Honey Co.
They produce some of the finest manuka honey in the world, and at very friendly prices.