As you prepare for your summer vacation, a leisurely afternoon at the beach or pool or a long hike or bike ride in the countryside, be sure to pack a small container of honey. Honey is a helpful, natural remedy that has many benefits. Here are some of our favorite uses for honey during the summer.
Soothe Sunburn or Wind-burned Skin
Apply honey directly to red and irritated skin and it will help hydrate and cool it. Honey is a natural humectant and will help sunburn and wind-burned skin heal faster. Let it set for about 20 minutes and then gently rinse off with cool water.
Treat Insect Stings and Bites
Rub a dab of honey on the sting or bite and then press an ice cube on top of it for several minutes. This procedure will help minimize the pain and remove dead skin cells, which will allow the skin to begin to heal. Honey’s antimicrobial properties will help prevent infection of the wound.
Repair Summer-Damaged Hair
Rinse hair that’s been exposed to sun, sand, salt or chlorine with a honey-lemon solution to restore its shine. Just dissolve one teaspoon of honey into four cups of warm water. Squeeze a half of lemon in and mix thoroughly. After shampooing and rinsing, remove any excess water from hair and the pour the honey-lemon mixture through it. Do not rinse out. Dry and style as usual.
Recover from Exercise
Exercising outside or participating in outdoor sports during the heat and humidity of summer can put a lot of stress on the body. By eating or drinking honey after a workout, its antioxidants can help prevent free radical damage caused by this stress and help the body recover faster. During exercise, blood glucose levels decrease because muscles use available glucose for energy. Ingesting carbohydrates—like honey—after exercising restores blood glucose levels, and honey may be one of the best carbohydrates to refuel with to avoid any hypoglycemia effects.