Chestnut honey is a particular honey, with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Let’s find out the benefits and applications.
Chestnut honey is a type of honey obtained from bees that use chestnut flowers, therefore it is harvested in summer, when the trees are in full bloom, and in hilly and mountainous areas, where chestnut trees are most present; in Italy we can find them throughout the Apennines.
The color is amber, holding on to darker shades and of a fairly fluid consistency. The flavor is also very particular and with a bitter aftertaste that distinguishes it from other types of honey.
Chestnut honey: calories and nutritional properties
Honey and chestnut honey is no exception, is an extremely caloric food, so much so that it is used as a sweetener instead of sugar. In fact, it provides about 300 kcal per 100 grams, deriving largely from simple sugars.
It is low in protein, contains no fat or fiber and water represents only 18% of its content. Among the minerals, we find mostly iron, potassium and calcium and it contains a fair amount of B vitamins and vitamin C. Let’s see in detail the properties of chestnut honey, which are comparable to those of other types of honey.
Nutritional values per 100g of chestnut honey:
- Kcal: 304
- Carbohydrates: 80.3 g
- Fat: 0 g
- Proteins: 0.6 g
- Fibers: 0 g
- Waterfall: 18 g
- Iron: 0.5 mg
- Soccer: 5 mg
- Sodium: 11 mg
- Potassium: 51 mg
- Phosphorus: 6 mg
- Zinc: 0.9 mg
- Vitamin B1: traces
- Vitamin B2: 0.04 mg
- C vitamin: 1 mg
- Vitamin B3: 0.3 mg
- Vitamin B6: 0.02 mg
Chestnut honey: the health benefits
Chestnut honey is a food rich in beneficial properties and in addition to retaining all the generic properties of honey, it has peculiar properties due to the characteristics that derive from the fact that it is produced from chestnut flowers.
It presents itself differently from most honey since it has a darker color and a characteristic odor, moreover it has a slightly “woody” and partly bitter aftertaste and in any case less sweet than other types of honey. Let’s see what are the main benefits of chestnut honey for our health.
Chestnut honey is rich in polyphenols, which are antioxidant substances with antibacterial properties, especially against bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli, as also demonstrated by some scientific studies, so it could be an excellent adjuvant of drugs in cases of infection.
Chestnut honey, as already mentioned, contains many antioxidant compounds, including tannins and flavonoids, which have a high anti-inflammatory power and could therefore provide help in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases.
Chestnut honey has emollient and lubricating properties that make it an excellent soothing agent, for this reason it is recommended for example to soothe the throat irritations typical of the winter season or in case of gastric ulcer as a protector of the stomach walls.
With its antispasmodic properties, chestnut honey can be useful in relieving gastric and intestinal problems and menstrual pain.
✓ Packed with energy
As a concentrate of sugars and mineral salts ready for use, chestnut honey can be used by athletes immediately after an intense physical effort to immediately recover part of the energy expended.
✓ Excellent for convalescence
Immediately after a period of illness or discomfort that has led to a state of general debilitation, chestnut honey can be useful to recover strength quickly and effectively. It is also extremely digestible and can therefore be used by children and the elderly.
How to use chestnut honey
As already mentioned, chestnut honey has a somewhat particular flavor that differs from other types of honey for its slightly bitter aftertaste and for an aroma that may not meet everyone’s taste if used as a sweetener.
Despite this, it is excellent in herbal teas or tea, but probably lends itself even better to pairings with cheeses, especially if seasoned or blue-veined. It can in fact be used for the preparation of first courses but also second courses, as a combination with game, for example.
It is also widely used for desserts based on chestnut flour or with dried fruit, in fact a very simple dessert to prepare at home, even for a nutritious breakfast, sees chestnut honey combined with a white yogurt with the addition of berries or grains. of almonds or pistachios. The best time to eat chestnut honey is in fact at breakfast or for an invigorating post-workout snack.
However, we wonder how much honey to eat per day. Since it is very caloric, the recommended daily amount of honey is around 30 grams, which of course must be lowered in case you are following a low calorie diet due to an overweight problem. In fact, one could get into the habit of replacing the sugar used as a sweetener with honey, always in moderate quantities.
Chestnut honey in cosmetics: how to use it on skin and hair
Thanks to its moisturizing, soothing, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, chestnut honey is widely used in cosmetics, in fact it finds numerous applications in skin and hair care.
For a home remedy against dry skin, it is possible to apply a small amount on the skin of the face or on chapped hands, it will in fact be able to retain water preventing its natural evaporation. Associated with coconut oil the nourishing effect will be even greater, associated with lemon juice, on the other hand, will have an illuminating and exfoliating effect.
In some moisturizers it is used as an anti- aging principle, since it counteracts wrinkles by promoting firmness of the skin. It seems that chestnut honey also helps to reduce swelling of the legs, so by adding honey to the warm water of the bath you can obtain a deflating and smoothing effect.
Thanks to its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, in the case of small skin abrasions, it can be used as a natural remedy, like a cream.
In the case of thin or brittle hair, it is possible to make a compress with chestnut honey by spreading it on dry hair and massaging the scalp, then leaving it to act for about 10 minutes before shampooing. It will be able to strengthen the hair but also to soothe the itching possibly linked to dandruff or flaking.
Storage of chestnut honey
Honey is a food that can be stored for a long time, however following the expiration indications on the label. However, it is good to try to keep it at a temperature around 20 degrees, therefore away from heat, and it is not necessary to put it in the refrigerator.
It is possible that an initially liquid honey will change consistency over time and become thicker or even crystallize. This phenomenon is due to the high quantity of sugars present, in particular glucose and fructose, the proportion of which varies according to the type of honey. Fructose is more soluble than glucose, so honeys containing more fructose than glucose tend to remain more liquid, and this is precisely the case with chestnut honey, which tends to crystallize much less than other types of honey. However, crystallization does not alter the properties of honey.
If this should occur because for example we have kept the honey at very low temperatures, usually below 12 degrees, it is possible to bring it back to the liquid state by placing the container in a water bath, being careful not to exceed 50 degrees, otherwise you risk to spoil the honey.
Contraindications of chestnut honey
In predisposed subjects, chestnut honey can cause allergic reactions and in addition to this, the most important contraindication for an abundant and regular use of this food lies in the fact that it is very caloric, so those with overweight problems should use it moderately.
Being composed largely of sugars, even those who suffer from diabetes or in general have problems related to glucose management (hyperglycemia, insulin resistance ) should limit its use.
Chestnut honey has about 30% fewer calories than normal cooking sugar, but this does not mean that it should be used excessively. It must be said, however, that this type of honey has a lower glycemic index than other types of honey, so it is more suitable for those with blood sugar problems and especially insulin, who can use it, as long as in small quantities.
Chestnut honey: prices and purchase
Chestnut honey can be purchased in common supermarkets, organic food stores, herbalists, online and sometimes in food markets. When purchasing it would be better to choose an Italian honey, since Italian legislation requires that the final product does not contain residues of chemicals or drugs that may be used for beekeeping, and, if possible, of an organic type. The color of the honey must also be as homogeneous as possible, usually amber in color, darker than other types of honey.
In general, the price of a good honey should not be less than 10 euros per kg, and for chestnut honey it is around 20-25 euros per kg.