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Abstract

NUTRITIONAL AND MEDICINAL IMPORTANCE OF MADHU (HONEY)

Satyapal Singh*

ABSTRACT

Honey is one of the most valued and appreciated natural product known to mankind since time immemorial. It is a natural substance produced by honeybees. Honey has used in Ayurveda for nutritional and therapeutic purpose since many centuries. It is a common Anupaan in the Ayurvedic clinical practice. Ayurveda as well as contemporary science described different varieties of honey. Due to the variation of botanical origin honey differs in appearance, sensory perception and composition. Its composition and quality vary greatly with the botanical source of nectar as well as environmental and climatic conditions. The main nutritional and health relevant components are carbohydrates, mainly fructose and glucose but also about twenty five different oligosaccharides. Although honey is a high carbohydrate food, its glycemic index varies within a wide range from 32 to 85, depending on the botanical source. It contains small amount of proteins, enzymes, amino acids, minerals, trace elements, vitamins, aroma compounds and polyphenols. Therefore, honey can be used for nutritional as well as therapeutic purpose. The present review foccused on nutritional and medicinal importance of honey, its different varieties and traditional uses of honey in Ayurvedic system of medicine.

Keywords: Madhu, Honey, Anupaan, Yogwahi, Ayurveda.


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