Is Honey Keto Friendly – 6 Essential Points You Should Understand

Honey is a very delicious and beneficial sweetener. For this honey is very common for all our kitchen. But is honey keto friendly? Can we consider honey keto? For that we have to know about carbs in honey.

Keto life is just like this. You see a food; now you have to think can this food go with keto? If not, then what to do? How to substitute it?

Same goes for honey. You see honey. And now you are here with a question in mind: is honey keto friendly?

Raw honey is a thick, golden liquid that is a pure, unfiltered, natural sweetener made by bees from nectar of certain colours. Nectar is a sweet juice that, once taken from a flower, is stored in the bee’s stomach.

When it comes to comparing raw honey with cane sugar, there are several factors to consider. Although both contain glucose and fructose, sugar loses a significant portion of its natural sweetness during processing.

To digest honey, our body does not need as many resources as for sugar. Sucrose (sugar) consists of two molecules, glucose and fructose. Before our body can use them as energy, it must break these molecules into pieces using enzymes. 

is honey keto friendly

However, with honey, everything is a little different. When bees store honey in their stomachs, a special enzyme is added to the nectar that separates the two molecules. So our stomach do not have to add that enzyme anymore.

Is honey keto friendly?

To understand the fact: is honey is keto friendly or not we first have to discuss the chemical compounds of honey. Specially carbs in honey. So first lets have a look at carbs in honey-

Carbs in honey

Honey has a high sweetness, a pleasant specific aroma and taste, which depend on the type of honey. The calories, carbs and other properties also vary from type to type. But on an average the data is as follows:

Calories329 K Cal
Protein0.8 g
Fat0.0 g
Carbohydrate81.5 g
The data is based on 100 grams of honey

Again point to be noted, each type and variety of honey has its own calorie content, the average figure is given in the article.

It is not like that honey does not have anything else except these 4 elements. Honey consists of vitamin B6, thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc as well.

Honey is the main source of carbohydrate nutrition for bees. The main raw material for obtaining honey is nectar secreted by flowers, as well as a pad consisting of feces of aphids and insects and a sweet effusion of plant leaves. Nectar consists of water (40-80%) and various Sugars: cane, less often fruit and grape.

The composition of natural and honeydew honey includes more than 20 different carbohydrates (Sugars).

In a tablespoon of honey, 17 g of carbohydrates – and 16 of them are sugar. It generally does not have fat, fiber and only a tenth of a gram of protein.

So here is the decision time now. Honey is a high-carbohydrate product, you can’t shove it into the keto-frame in any way.

Unfortunately honey is not keto friendly. Because of its high carbohydrates you cannot manage it in ketogenic diet plans.

But will you be knocked out of ketosis if you take honey?

Remember, ketosis is a metabolic condition. Keto diet is a guide on the way to ketosis. Most for ketosis need to limit carbohydrates to 20 g per day, someone can go up to 50 g, and athletes can eat up to 100 g of carbohydrates per day, and even then – in theory – can stay in ketosis. 

That is, yes, it is quite possible that you eat high-carb food (the same honey) and remain in ketosis. But it is obvious that its constant consumption will affect your success. A considerable amount of sugar will affect health. Do not be fooled by vitamins, in honey there are no unique substances that could not be obtained from keto foods. 

The main point that you have to keep in mind here is that honey is a such kind of food that gives you a huge amount of carbs. So it is tough to keep the total carbs of a day under 50 grams if you take honey. This is the main consideration here to decide: is honey keto friendly or not.

So if you are still not convinced about is honey keto friendly and still want to have some honey then the following section is for you-

How and when can I use honey on a ketogenic diet?

The only way to make honey part of a keto diet is as follows:

  • Follow a targeted ketogenic diet and eat honey before or after your workout.
    This is one type of keto diet designed for more active people who need more carbohydrates. It allows 20 to 50 grams of extra carbohydrates an hour before or after a workout.
  • Follow a cyclic ketogenic diet and eat honey during your “carbohydrate” days.
    It is another form of diet, which offers 5 days to adhere to the standard ketogenic diet, and 1-2 days to do “carbohydrate”. 
    This means that from 24 to 48 hours a week, you eat a low-calorie, high-carb diet to fully replenish glycogen stores from 400 to 600 grams. 
    However, this diet is recommended only for athletes or individuals who train with such high intensity that they absolutely need this portion of carbohydrates.
  • Your carbohydrate intake throughout the day, including honey, does not exceed 50 grams. (It is really quite tough. Most of the case you will exceed 50 grams. So try to avoid this way if you are not 100% confident)

Now lets take our discussion to another way. After a thorough discussion now you know that carbs in honey is very high. And so the answer to your question: is honey keto friendly; is of course no.

But from the very childhood we have heard that honey is so good for our health. It is a great source of energy and has so many health benefits. So how can we get those benefits?

Before telling this lets have a look at the benefits of honey which are making you guys ask again and again: is honey keto friendly.

Benefits of honey

The healing properties of honey are determined by its chemical composition. 75-80% of this product is carbohydrates (glucose, fructose, sucrose). It also contains vitamins (A, C, E, K and B vitamins), organic acids, enzymes, mineral salts (iron, copper, potassium, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus, iodine, sulfur) and other compounds useful to the human body.

  • Bee honey is the best friend of the stomach: it increases appetite and affects the digestive system.
  • Affects metabolism and blood composition.
  • Helps restore microflora.
  • Normalizes sleep.
  • Helps the heart.
  • Useful for nervous disorders and anemia.
  • It fights against fever, boosts immunity and fights viruses and colds.
  • Promotes More Thyroid Treatment.
  • Honey – a natural antibiotic that is used as an anti-inflammatory.
  • It is used for external infections. As it promotes tissue regeneration, it is really good for various infections and skin issues..
  • Tones up and quickly regains strength.
  • It is a natural laxative.

But in spite of all its benefits is honey keto friendly? No. So we have to solve this issue. We have to find some keto honey substitutes or honey alternatives as keto and honey are not playing well together.

Now this finding on keto honey substitute has two steps.

  • On the primary step we will search for honey alternatives that can take part in our diet and fulfil the empty spaces of vitamins and minerals that honey provides.
  • On the second step we will go for honey alternatives that can play a role as a sweetener.

Substitute for honey in a keto diet [To fulfil the nutrition demand]

The following food items are allowed in a keto diet. And they will be the substitute for honey so that we can fulfil our nutrition demand.

  • Vitamin B6: tuna, pistachios, beef, chicken, yolk, pink salmon
  • Thiamine: Pollock roe, pork, pine nuts, liver
  • Niacin: broccoli, asparagus, almonds, avocado, liver
  • Riboflavin: liver, kidney, heart, mushrooms, yolk, cod liver 
  • Pantothenic acid: liver, mushrooms, cauliflower, oyster mushrooms, yolks 
  • Calcium: hard cheese, fatty cottage cheese, sesame seeds, cabbage, parsley 
  • Copper: seafood, liver, asparagus, spinach, cabbage
  • Iron: beef, liver, heart, rabbit, spinach
  • Magnesium: spinach, yolk, sea fish, chocolate 
  • Manganese: liver, chanterelles, spinach, hazelnuts, yolk, garlic 
  • Phosphorus: chicken, turkey, pork, offal
  • Potassium: tomatoes, salmon, avocado, spinach, pumpkin
  • Sodium: Seaweed, Seafood, Yolk
  • Zinc: seafood, liver, poultry, cheese, green vegetables

This is another approach from us for you. So that you do not feel that honey was so great. We should not leave honey for keto. You have started keto diet for gaining a fit body. And that is your main goal. So for any food which is not keto friendly you will have to replace it.

Substitute for honey in a keto diet [To fulfil the sweetener demand]

Despite all the benefits and health benefits , raw honey contains a lot of carbohydrates, so it is not very suitable for people on a ketogenic diet. Fortunately, there are excellent low-carb alternatives that can work as honey substitute

Stevia as a substitute for honey

It is one of the best natural sweeteners found today in healthy recipes. Stevia is a plant from the same family as marigolds, ragweed and chrysanthemum. It contains two separate glycosides, which are responsible for its sweetness – stevioside and rebaudioside.

stevia substitution for honey

Stevia has been shown to significantly reduce blood sugar and insulin resistance due to its low glycemic index. It also helps lower cholesterol and maintain a healthy weight. However, there are several types of this plant, so make sure that the stevia you use is organic and non-GMO.

For stevia, there is no question like is honey keto friendly.

1 gram of stevia is just 1 gram of carbohydrates, not containing calories. So you can easily manage it in your keto diet chart.

Allulose as a substitute for honey

Another natural sweetener, which is quite rare in foods. In fact, the only foods that contain this low-calorie sugar alternative are wheat, figs and raisins.

Allulose is a sugar, also known as monosaccharide, whose ability to resist fermentation in the intestines reduces the risk of bloating, cramps, or gas. 

allulose substitution for honey

Along with a positive effect on the digestive tract, allulose also has a glycemic index of zero, which makes it an ideal sugar substitute for people struggling with diabetes or weight loss.

Allulose has only one tenth of the calories of your traditional sugar. So undoubtedly it is a great keto honey subsititute.

Arhat (monk fruit) as a substitute for honey

One of the best natural sweeteners, as the compounds in the fruits of arhat make it 400 times sweeter than traditional cane sugar without any negative consequences.

Yes, you understood correctly. Sugar, which is 400 times sweeter than cane, and with zero calories.

Monk fruits contain mokrozidy – antioxidants responsible for a very sweet taste. They are also key players in the fight against free radicals and oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is when free radicals (unstable molecules in the body) begin to attack and damage other cells.

arhat substitution for honey

In addition, arhat can help people struggling with diabetes and obesity due to its extremely low glycemic index. A low glycemic index does not cause an increase in blood sugar or insulin – ideal for diabetics. 

Also, the monk fruit helps fight fatigue and works as a natural antihistamine.

Erythritol as a subsitute for honey

Unlike the other sweeteners listed above, erythritol is actually considered sugar alcohol, which adds a sweet taste without carbohydrates or calories. 1 gram of this natural sweetener is less than half a gram of total calories.

I hope this 4 elements can play a vital role as substitute for honey in your keto journey as a sweetener. And I also hope these will end your question: is honey keto friendly.

erythritol substitution for honey

But it is not the end. I do not why but people out there are really crazy about honey. They search: is honey keto friendly? No. Why? Because it has sugar. Now their question is: Is there any sugar free honey?

I really got this message many times. So now I will try to clarify that situation as well.

Is there any sugar free honey?

First of all: real sugar free honey – there is no such thing. Actually there is no “fake” honey as well, at least the name would be misleading and not allowed. Honey mainly consists of different forms of sugar that are already contained in the flower nectar or in the honeydew.

sugar free honey

Flower nectar – an origin of honey

Flower nectar is a sweet, watery solution. Plants excrete this fluid through their nectaries to attract insects. In this way, the plants ensure that their pollen is carried on – that is, they multiply. 

There are extrafloral nectaries that sit outside the flower or floral nectaries that are in the flower area. The nectaries, also known as “honey glands”, are plant glands through which the nectar is excreted.

The colorful flora does a lot to attract insects to reproduce. The bright colors are just one example, another is the sugar-containing juice. It consists of many different types of sugar, but mainly sucrose, glucose and fructose.

  • Fructose is a simple sugar that forms tiny, white crystals. Simple sugars are monosaccharides and consist of numerous individual molecules. Fructose is a very sweet substance and its share in honey is revealed during crystallization: a honey that contains a higher proportion of fructose later crystallizes out.
  • Glucose is also a simple sugar and is primarily responsible for candying honey. The more glucose is in the honey, the faster the honey crystallizes. Glucose doesn’t taste as sweet as fructose or sucrose.
  • Sucrose (cane sugar) is a double sugar (disaccharide) , which is composed of one molecule of fructose and one molecule of glucose.

There are also proportions of water, aromas, fragrance secretions, minerals, amino acids and vitamins. Each plant forms its own composition between the sugar forms and the water content.

Honeydew – another honey origin

While blossom honey logically consists of blossom nectar, the situation is different with honeydew. Honeydew is also a sweet liquid that has its origin in the sieve tubes of forest plants. The plants produce the typical juice that is absorbed by the smallest organisms. 

For example, the beaked insects, scale insects, leaf fleas or cicadas are popular buyers of the sugary juice. Since the insects absorb too much of the juice, they release part of it – and that is exactly what honeydew ( forest honey ) is. 

Fresh honeydew mainly contains fructose, glucose and sucrose, in addition there are sugar forms such as maltose, fructomaltose, melezitose and oligosaccharides. The sweet solution is rounded off by ferments, organic acids, vitamins and phosphates.

The bees are converters

Bees process the sucrose in nectar or honeydew using the body’s own enzymes by splitting the sugar into the basic sugars glucose and fructose. This transformation takes place in the honey bladder and in the digestive tract.

Honey: the sweetener straight from nature cannot be sugar free

A look at the ingredients in honey shows that there is no sugar free honey. In fact, honey is actually the only natural sweetener that is available to humans in its original, natural form. 

Honey can be used in a variety of ways, either as a wholesome spread, as a sweetener in tea, as a sugar substitute in baking, or as an ingredient in cooking and roasting. 

Fortunately, the Honey Ordinance clearly regulates that honey can be called honey up until it is a natural product. Therefore, sugar free honey would therefore no longer be honey.

I hope this clarifies your query. You may find many posts on internet claiming sugar free honey; but please keep this in mind that there can be anything but sugar free honey.

So as you are in the road of a keto journey and there is no sugar free honey; you have to avoid honey from now on.

FAQ on: Is honey keto friendly

Can you have honey on a low carb diet?

The answer is really tricky. Understand it properly. There are some low carb diets which allow honey in a small quantity. But Keto diet, fat fasting and similar diets do not allow honey.

Is there a keto substitute for honey?

There are many keto substitutes for honey. We have already discussed them. But still we are telling once again. The keto substitutes for honey are
1. Stevia.
2. Allulose.
3. Monk Fruit.
4. Erythritol.

What is the best sweetener for Keto?

Not an easy question to answer.
1. Stevia.
2. Allulose.
3. Monk Fruit.
4. Erythritol.
All have their benefits and demerits. But comparing all of them deeply we can suggest you stevia.

Can you eat bananas on keto?

No. Bananas are not keto. Please check our post on are bananas keto friendly, to understand it properly.

That’s all for today’s article. I hope the explanation was enough to answer your query: is honey keto friendly. Even though if you have any question feel free to ask that in the comment section.

Also follow us on social media. You can ask your questions there as well. Enjoy your keto journey.

See you soon!

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