It is interesting to compare what modern Western science is proving with what Chinese herbalists have observed for centuries.
Nutraceuticals are getting a significant amount of attention, with many food items being shown to have proven health benefits. In this case the research indicates that honey, known as “feng mi” or just “mi” in Chinese herbalism, lowers blood glucose, LDL, and triglycerides, while increasing HDL, all of which are beneficial to cardiovascular health.
Honey Reduces Cardiometabolic Risks, U of T Study Shows
Chinese herbalists didn’t have Western medical technology to explain why specific treatments helped patients. So they used Chinese terminology to explain it.
In the Chinese herbal materia medica, honey is a qi tonic with the herbal flavor of sweetness. According to Chinese herbalists, honey’s specific actions are:
1.) to moisten the lung and intestines to stop constipation and coughing,
2.) to eliminate heat toxins (especially in the skin), and most importantly
3.) to nourish and moisten the spleen/stomach (aka your digestive system).
If asked to explain this study in Eastern medical terms, a Chinese herbalist would say the honey nourishes and moistens the spleen and stomach, harmonizing them. This helps the spleen make “blood”, which directly strengthens the “heart”.
Or, in the words of Western medicine, honey strengthens cardiovascular health. This appears to be done by modulating our digestive systems output towards a beneficial balance of the types of cholesterol and triglycerides.
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