How To Use Honey For Weight Loss: Benefits And Precautions

Get your facts right before including this liquid gold in your diet and wellness routine.

Reviewed by Lakshmi Tejasvi.M, MSc (Clinical Nutrition) Lakshmi Tejasvi.M Lakshmi Tejasvi.MMSc (Clinical Nutrition)
Written by , MSc (Nutrition), CDE Priyanka Sadhukhan MSc (Nutrition), CDE Experience: 8 years
Edited by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , BTech (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach Sindhu Koganti BTech (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach Experience: 6 years
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Drinking honey and warm water for weight loss is your sure shot way to a slimmer body. The antioxidants in honey help flush out toxins, and its antibacterial properties protect the body from infections.

You can drink this mixture first thing in the morning. You may also rev it up with lemon juice or add honey to your cup of green tea to lose weight. But, is honey good for weight loss? Does it cause any side effects?

protip_icon Trivia
The origin of the nectar used to make honey determines the richness of its flavor. For example, eucalyptus honey has a mellow menthol flavor, buckwheat honey is intense and very spicy, and linden honey is dainty and woodsy.

Read on to know how warm water and honey aid weight loss and learn more about their benefits.

How To Use Honey For Weight Loss

1. Honey And Lemon For Weight Loss

A concoction of lemon juice and honey for weight loss
Image: Shutterstock

Mixing lemon and honey creates an effective and easy DIY detoxification drink to lose weight, that also provides the necessary hydration to your body.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of organic honey
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 300 ml of water
  • Grated ginger (optional)
  • Black salt (to taste)

How To Prepare

  1. Heat the water in a pan, but do not bring it to a boil.
  2. If you overheat the water, set it aside to cool down a bit.
  3. Stir in the organic honey, lemon, grated ginger, and black salt.
  4. Your detox drink is ready to serve.

Benefits For Weight Loss

A study conducted by the San Diego State University on rats has suggested that honey may reduce weight gain and obesity (1).

Lemon is also effective in detoxifying your body to aid weight loss. A study on the lemon detox diet showed positive results in aiding weight loss and improving insulin resistance in premenopausal women (2). However, these results cannot be generalized to the general population.

2. Milk With Honey For Weight Loss

A glass of warm milk with a tablespoon of honey as a weight loss drink
Image: Shutterstock

If you love milk, you can enjoy it with a tablespoon of organic honey to lose weight.

Ingredients

  • A glass of milk
  • 1 tablespoon of organic honey

How To Prepare

  1. Boil the milk, then let it cool down to a lukewarm temperature.
  2. You can boil it with bay leaves and cardamom to enhance its taste.
  3. Add honey and stir it well.

Benefits For Weight Loss

A cup of whole milk contains 7.69 g of protein (3). Protein intake boosts metabolism, increases satiety, reduces belly fat, and lowers blood pressure (4). Adding honey to it can accelerate this process.

3. Honey With Warm Water For Weight Loss

A glass of plain warm honey water for weight loss
Image: Shutterstock

You can even enjoy honey with warm water to reduce weight.

Ingredients

  • A glass of lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon organic honey

How To Prepare

  1. Heat a glass of water and heat it to a lukewarm temperature.
  2. Mix a tablespoon of organic honey and drink it while it is still warm.

Benefits For Weight Loss

A study published in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research found that drinking more water increases thermogenesisi  The metabolic process of heat production in warm-blooded animals, including humans, to produce energy. , which reduces body weight and body mass index and improves the body composition of people who are overweight (5). Hence, drinking warm honey water may help with weight loss.

A blogger shared their experience of unintentionally losing weight by consuming hot water with honey to relieve throat irritation. They said, “It happened inadvertently, by the way, I was consuming hot water with honey as a cure to throat irritation (used to happen in the morning, as a result of sinus problem) and the weight got reduced on its own (i).” They mentioned that after regularly drinking this mixture for over a month, they noticed a visible reduction in weight.

4. Green Tea With Honey

A brew of green tea and honey for weight loss
Image: Shutterstock

If you are a tea lover but worried about gaining weight, green tea is a healthy beverage that you can enjoy.

Ingredients

  • 1 green tea bag
  • 1 teaspoon organic honey
  • A cup of water

How To Prepare

  1. Boil a cup of water.
  2. Steep the teabag in the water for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Mix in a teaspoon of honey once the tea cools down to room temperature.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Add ginger and lemongrass sticks for extra flavor if you think the solution is too bland. Additionally, herbs and spices can be used to enhance the flavor of green tea.

Benefits For Weight Loss

Many studies have concluded that drinking green tea can help reduce body weight if you are consistent with the habit (6). Adding honey to it further increases metabolism and accelerates weight loss.

5. Cinnamon And Honey For Weight Loss

A cinnamon and honey drink makes for a flavorful weight loss drink
Image: IStock

This a natural remedy and an effective way to kickstart your weight loss journey.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tablespoon honey
How To Prepare
  1. Boil the water.
  2. Put the cinnamon stick in a teapot and pour the boiling water into it.
  3. Let the water steep for about 10 minutes.
  4. Discard the cinnamon stick and mix in the honey in the water.
  5. Drink hot.

Benefits For Weight Loss

A study conducted at the Tehran University of Medical Sciences found that cinnamon supplementation helps reduce fat mass and is, therefore, an effective weight-reducing supplement (7).

Still wondering how honey aids weight loss. Scroll down to the next section to find out more.

Benefits Of Honey For Weight Loss

  1. Honey is loaded with vitamins and minerals that help increase energy and boost immunity (8), (9). This could help you stay active and work out more.
  2. Honey helps boost metabolism, which increases fat burning. A study conducted on rats showed that honey may help reduce weight gain and obesity (10).
  3. Honey is said to have a low glycemic indexi  A rating system for foods based on their carbohydrate content and how quickly they spike one’s blood sugar level upon consumption. due to its high fructose content (11). A study conducted on people with diabetes found that natural honey consumption led to a decrease in their body weight. However, the researchers recommended people with diabetes to exercise caution when consuming honey as it can also cause a significant increase in hemoglobin A(1C) levels (12).
  4. Another study conducted on rats fed a high-fat diet found that Malaysian honey can reduce weight gain and control obesity regulating lipid metabolism (13).
  5. Honey acts as a prebiotic that clears your digestive tract and removes toxic wastes from the body (14).

Honey consumption was also found to lower the fat percentage in rats. Thus, it may help prevent the diseases associated with metabolic syndromei  It occurs when a group of conditions including high blood pressure and excess body fat increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. such as obesity, diabetes mellitus, and hypertensioni  A chronic condition in which the flow of blood against the arterial walls is higher than normal. Also known as high blood pressure. (15).

According to a survey conducted on 487 participants where 57% were women and 43% were men. The age breakdown was: 18-30 years old (43.1%), 31-45 years old (26.7%), 46-60 years old (18%), and older (12.2%). It was found that honey is commonly used for cooking, with less than 1% of respondents not using it for this purpose. 42.9% of respondents use honey for cosmetic reasons, while 79% of respondents use it for medicinal purposes.

As you can see, honey can help you manage your weight. Here are a few ways to incorporate honey into your diet.

Other Ways To Use Honey

We already know that honey can be added to warm water to help with weight loss. However, here are some more ways to use honey:

  1. Cut an apple into slices and dip them in honey.
  2. If you want a quick treat before heading out for the day, slice an apple. Then, sprinkle a few tablespoons of honey and a dash of cinnamon powder on the slices.
  3. Granola and honey serves as a healthy breakfast option or evening snack. All you need to do is mix yogurt with a few spoons of honey, a couple of spoons of lemon juice, and half a cup of granola. This breakfast option is nutritious and rich in fiber.

Honey with warm water is effective for weight loss and boosting metabolism. But at the same time, you should be aware of some precautions while using it.

Precautions

  • Though honey is considered to be an anti-diabetic agent and has better glycemic control compared to sugar, using it cautiously is key if you have fluctuating glucose levels (16).
  • Honey is high in calories (8). This could overpower the amount of nutrition it provides. Therefore, measure the amount of honey you add to warm water carefully to regulate the calorie content.

There are several ways to use honey for weight loss. One of the most common of those is consuming it with warm water. However, it may cause some side effects. Let’s take a look at them below.

Side Effects Of Honey With Warm Water

Research on rats shows that heating honey produces hydroxymethyl furfuraldehyde (HMF), an organic compound, that may cause harmful effects (17). While more human studies are warranted in this regard, ensure that the water is not too hot when you mix honey in it.
Anecdotal evidence also suggests that intake of honey and warm water in excess may cause abdominal pain and bloating in some people.

Infographic: 5 Simple Ways To Use Honey For Weight Loss

If you are looking for a healthier and easier way to shed those extra pounds, you have come to the right place. Honey’s natural ability to burn fat can aid in weight loss. Read on to learn more about the five simple ways to use honey to lose weight in the infographic below!

5 simple ways to use honey for weight loss (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Honey is one of the best alternatives to table sugar to sweeten your meals without resorting to empty calories. Honey has various beneficial properties besides being a rich source of vitamins and minerals. To get the most of its benefits, you can drink honey and warm water for weight loss every morning on an empty stomach. In addition, you can also add honey to a meal of granola and yogurt or simple dip apple slices in it for a quick treat. There is substantial evidence to suggest that honey can improve metabolism and facilitate weight loss when consumed in moderation, to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I drink warm water with honey at night?

Yes, it has the same calorie-burning effect as in the morning. However, certain Ayurvedic principles advise not to use honey in any heated form.

Does honey in cold water increase weight?

No. You can use honey in place of sugar in cold water infusions. However, it is still high in calories, and overconsumption of honey-sweetened beverages may lead to weight gain over time.

Is honey good for skin?

Yes. Honey has antibacterial and antifungal properties and is good for the skin. It also helps minimize the appearance of scars and marks.

Does honey expire?

Pure, unadulterated honey doesn’t expire or spoil if stored properly. It may crystallize in cold temperatures. However, if it has a visible mold or smells different, then it must have been contaminated and should not be used further.

Is raw honey better?

Yes, raw honey has maximum nutritional benefits as pasteurization may alter the composition.

Should I refrigerate honey?

No, it is best kept at room temperature to void any solidification.

Key Takeaways

  • Honey is a natural sweetener rich in antioxidants.
  • Consuming honey mixed with warm water on an empty stomach helps improve metabolism and digestion.
  • Drinking green tea mixed with honey can help reduce body weight and increase metabolism.
  • Honey contains lots of vitamins and minerals that help increase energy and boost immunity.
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Start your day off right with some delicious honey. Watch this video to learn how taking it daily can help you lose weight and prevent obesity.

Personal Experience: Source

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. Nemoseck, Tricia M et al. “Honey promotes lower weight gain adiposity and triglycerides than sucrose in rats. ” Nutrition research (New York N.Y.) vol. 311, (2011): 55-60. doi:10.1016/j.nutres.2010.11.002
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21310307/
  2. Kim, Mi Joung et al. “Lemon detox diet reduced body fat insulin resistance and serum hs-CRP level without hematological changes in overweight Korean women. ” Nutrition research (New York, N.Y.) vol. 355 (2015): 409-20. doi:10.1016/j.nutres.2015.04.001
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25912765/
  3. US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. “Nutritive value of milk, whole”.
    https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/781084/nutrients
  4. Leidy Heather J et al. “The role of protein in weight loss and maintenance.” The American journal of clinical nutrition vol. 1016 (2015): 1320S-1329S. doi:10.3945/ajcn.114.084038
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25926512/
  5. Vij, Vinu A, and Anjali S Joshi. “Effect of ‘water induced thermogenesis’ on body weight, body mass index and body composition of overweight subjects.” Journal of clinical and diagnostic research : JCDR vol. 79 (2013): 1894-6. doi:10.7860/JCDR/2013/5862.3344
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3809630/
  6. Jurgens, Tannis, and Anne Marie Whelan. “Can green tea preparations help with weight loss?.” Canadian pharmacists journal : CPJ = Revue des pharmaciens du Canada : RPC vol. 1473 (2014): 159-60. doi:10.1177/1715163514528668
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4025876/
  7. Mousavi, Seyed Mohammad et al. “Cinnamon supplementation positively affects obesity: A systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.” Clinical nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland)vol. 39,1 (2020): 123-133. doi:10.1016/j.clnu.2019.02.017
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30799194/
  8. US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. “Nutritive value of honey”.
    https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/169640/nutrients
  9. Ahmed, Sarfraz et al. “Honey as a Potential Natural Antioxidant Medicine: An Insight into Its Molecular Mechanisms of Action.” Oxidative medicine and cellular longevity vol. 2018 8367846. 18 Jan. 2018 doi:10.1155/2018/8367846
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5822819/
  10. Nemoseck, Tricia M et al. “Honey promotes lower weight gain adiposity, and triglycerides than sucrose in rats.” Nutrition research (New York N.Y.)vol. 311 (2011): 55-60. doi:10.1016/j.nutres.2010.11.002
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21310307/
  11. Sadeghi, Fatemeh et al. “Effect of Natural Honey on Glycemic Control and Anthropometric Measures of Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: A Randomized Controlled Crossover Trial.” International journal of preventive medicine vol. 10 3. 15 Jan. 2019 doi:10.4103/ijpvm.IJPVM_109_18
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6360845/
  12. Bahrami, Mohsen et al. “Effects of natural honey consumption in diabetic patients: an 8-week randomized clinical trial.” International journal of food sciences and nutrition vol. 60,7 (2009): 618-26. doi:10.3109/09637480801990389
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19817641/
  13. Samat, Suhana et al. “Four-Week Consumption of Malaysian Honey Reduces Excess Weight Gain and Improves Obesity-Related Parameters in High Fat Diet Induced Obese Rats.” Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM vol. 2017 (2017): 1342150. doi:10.1155/2017/1342150
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28246535/
  14. Miguel, M G et al. “Honey as a Complementary Medicine.” Integrative medicine insights vol. 12 1178633717702869. 24 Apr. 2017, doi:10.1177/1178633717702869
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5406168/
  15. Ramli NZ, Chin K-Y, Zarkasi KA, Ahmad F. “A Review on the Protective Effects of Honey against Metabolic Syndrome.” Nutrients. 2018; 10(8):1009. doi:10.3390/nu10081009
    https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/10/8/1009
  16. Bahrami M, Ataie-Jafari A, Hosseini S, Foruzanfar MH, Rahmani M, Pajouhi M. “Effects of natural honey consumption in diabetic patients: an 8-week randomized clinical trial.” Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2009 Nov;60(7):618-26. doi: 10.3109/09637480801990389
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19817641/
  17. Annapoorani A, Anilakumar KR, Khanum F, Murthy NA, Bawa AS. “Studies on the physicochemical characteristics of heated honey, honey mixed with ghee and their food consumption pattern by rats.” Ayu. 2010 Apr;31(2):141-6. doi: 10.4103/0974-8520.72363
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19817641/
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Lakshmi Tejasvi.M

Lakshmi Tejasvi.MMSc (Clinical Nutrition)

Lakshmi Tejasvi has 11 years of experience as a nutritionist. She began her career, working at different hospitals and clinics. She then branched out in 2016 and launched VIBGYOR Nutri, rooted in the conviction that rainbow foods should be the mainstay of our lives. She believes that nature has provided us with everything we need to nourish our bodies and...read full bio

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