A while back I stumbled upon the honey diet. According to the "inventor" you should take 1-2 tablespoons of honey before going to sleep. It's supposed to help reduce stress hormones, increase fat-burning and help you sleep.

Since your liver is supposed to dish out 10 grams of glucose per hour, taking honey before you go to sleep "fuels" the liver since honey is comprised of glucose and fructose.

If the liver does not have sufficient supply of glucose, adrinal glands release stress hormones which raise heart rate and blood pressure and result in muscle and bone degredation.

There is much more "science" behind the explination as to why this works.

I took 2-3 spoon fulls of honey each night for almost a year (still do). I didn't see any loss of weight but I did sleep much better (thats why I kept doing it).

My question is, with all this science behind it, how come it doesn't work?


Simple: You're adding calories to your diet. If that's the only change you've made, and you were gaining weight or maintaining weight prior to adding the honey, why would you start losing weight by eating more, especially when it's more sugar? You will see better sleep, I'll agree with that, because honey is a great source of very raw and natural carbohydrates which are easily broken down by the body, significantly easier to break down than fat.

If you were not taking the honey, the liver would still need to dish out either 10g of glucose or an equivalent weight in ketones per hour in order to maintain body and brain function (not saying that 10g of ketones is equal to 10g of glucose). As it stands, you're simply providing your body something easier to take than your body's fat, so your body takes the path of least resistance during sleep, which is exactly what it's designed to do.

EDIT: I should add to my answer here that taking honey is very beneficial in several ways. Taking honey from local sources is well-known to reduce allergies. It also will help you sleep better, as noted by the question asked. However, one should never expect to lose weight by adding more sugar to their diet. Sugar causes the body to produce insulin, which aids in the storage of fat and prevents the release of energy from fat cells.

Now, if you were to reduce the amount of carbohydrates you take in throughout the day to compensate for the amount in the honey that you take at night, there is a slim possibility that you may see some difference in the way your body responds.

  • right, because honey is already processed - nothing to break down except the fructose (done in the liver). The skeptics ask the same questions that you pointed out, "how can you lose weight when you're adding calories at a time when metabolism is low?". So where does the fat-burning come in? – DustinDavis Mar 16 '11 at 18:31
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    @DustinDavis - While you're taking honey it doesn't... that's why you aren't losing weight. If you weren't taking honey before bed, and you weren't hyped up on glucose, your body would need to burn it's fat stores to produce ketones instead of using the glucose to produce glycogen. At a minimum, it would burn off excess stores in your liver from earlier meals. As it stands, you're just adding fuel so it doesn't need to burn what it has stored. – Nathan Wheeler Mar 16 '11 at 18:59

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