One of the best foods that fuel your brain!

eat honey before bedtime

I’m telling you a secret: “Eat one tablespoon of honey before bedtime! It’s one of the best foods that fuel your brain over night.”

Ron Fessenden, MD, MPH, in his latest book “The New Honey Revolution” shared this secret with the whole world: Take honey just before sleep and you will feed the king of your organs: the brain.

What fuels the brain?

1. The glucose found in the circulating blood. Our blood sugar. We all have about 5 liters of blood and 5 grams of sugar in it. But the brain is not the only organ consuming the blood sugar in our body. And even if it was only it taking it all, it will be enough for 1 hour, the most.

The brain burns amino acids from proteins and acid lactic, but these are in short supply in circulation. In extreme starvation situations, when liver glycogen and blood glucose are over, it can burn fats to survive. After this is over, it will enter a coma stage to protect itself.

2. The glycogen from our liver. The main fuel source.
When we eat, the brain is fed as well. But the brain is an organ which doesn’t storage, so what is it going to do between meals, or during night sleep, or during physical exercises when the demands is growing? The liver is helping it. It produces glycogen that offers the necessary fuel.

How is glycogen made?

The liver makes glycogen from 2 ingredients which must be is an equal ratio. HONEY is a food that contains those two ingredients, fructose and glucose, in the perfect ratio 1:1. It is understandable then, why it produces more liver glycogen per gram than any other food.
give honey to your liverThe liver makes glycogen and stores it. Its storage capacity is of about 75 grams. Of course it can be bigger for a bigger person. It goes somewhere between 60 and 110 grams. In the rest time, like during the night, the liver releases like 10 grams per hour, to the brain, red blood cells and kidneys. 6.5 grams go to the brain and 3.5 grams go the kidneys and red blood cells. The brain will last on this fuel between 6 to 8 hours, meaning our period of night sleep.

It gets obvious then, that the moment we go to bed, our liver should have its storage full, so it can supply first the brain and then the others, with glycogen.

There are foods, which despite being sweet, DO NOT RAISE the blood sugar, but are turned directly into glycogen, by our liver. Why? Because they contain fairly equal amounts of fructose and glucose, exactly what the liver needs to make glycogen. It takes them both, makes glycogen and there is no glucose left to raise the blood sugar.

These amazing foods are: fruits, some vegetables and honey.

Isn’t the food we eat enough for the brain?

It is. At least during daytime. If we eat correctly, have two main meals and 2 snacks, varied, healthy and less processed. (But in our tumultuous daily life things are different.) The brain takes its liver glycogen from the food we eat.

What happens over night?

Lately so many diets are telling us not to eat in the evening. Or eat a salad, or a yogurt. Will our liver makes its 75 grams of glycogen out of a yogurt? Not even close! So what is it going to happen? The brain will get the message from the liver: no more glycogen. What does the brain do? Initiates a protective measure called “metabolic stress”. It will trigger the stress hormones, adrenalin and cortisol, which will wake us up and send us to eat. So we eat again.
Night after night this will turn into what is called “chronic brain starvation“.

Metabolic stress
is not a disease. It’s a normal reaction of the body, that detects when something is wrong and reacts, so that the balance is achieved again. But if this repeats too often, for too much time, night after night, some real diseases will show up their ugly faces.

brain fed with liver glycogenIsn’t the brain sleeping at night, like the whole body?

No. There are even some new studies telling us that the brain is more awake during nighttime, than it is during daytime. We go to sleep but our brain goes to work.
It will need lots of energy to do that.

So, what if we wake up in the night and eat a little?

Is not only that we eat a little. The brain crying for help translates into this metabolic stress. During it, the adrenal glands will release stress hormones, adrenalin and cortisol, which will affect the entire body and wake us up to eat.  When this metabolic stress is repeated too many times, it will affect almost every organ in our body. This leads to interrelated conditions affecting all our body, producing from sleep deprivation, fatigue, weight gain, to depression, glucose intolerance, type 2 diabetes, increased blood pressure, atherosclerosis, cardiovascular diseases, thyroid disease, neuropathy, Alzheimer’s and so on.

The solution?

The solution is simple and inexpensive. One or two tablespoons of honey just before bedtime. Try it with 1 tablespoon first and see how it works for you. For me it was too much. I weigh 60 kg. I took 1 tablespoon of blended honey and I fell asleep after 1 hour, and I was almost conscious during all my dreams. My brain was fueled all right! The next night I took only one teaspoon and it was perfect. Slept like a baby. The liver capacity of storage depends on many things, including body weight, age, health etc. We must find our suitable amount of honey.

raw raspberry honey

What makes honey that good?

Honey has fructose and glucose in an almost equal ratio of 1:1 (depends on the type of honey), the perfect way for our liver to turn it immediately into glycogen, our brain’s fuel. If the honey had only glucose, it would have gone into our blood, without liver intervention.

A tablespoon of honey (21 g) contains about 7.5 grams of glucose and 8.6 grams of fructose. Just like in an apple.
From these quantities will result almost 17 grams of glycogen, produced by our liver.
Two tablespoons of honey will then make almost 34 grams of glycogen.

Considering we had our dinner two or three hours before bedtime, our liver still has some glycogen storage enough for couple of hours, meaning it is half full. Supplementing it with another 35 grams of glycogen from 2 tablespoons of honey, would be enough to supply the brain, kidney and red blood cells for 7 or 8 hours of sleep.

Aren’t other foods good for this?

They are. But they also have side effects. Honey doesn’t.
Other foods that contain fructose and glucose in an almost equal ratio, are fruits and some vegetables.

Eating them right before bedtime it would mean to wake up the entire digestive system to process them in a time when it should just “rest”.
Also, some vegetables contain starch, which is rapidly converted into glucose, raise the blood sugar, trigger release of insulin, makes glucose enter the muscle cells and thus not available for the brain. In a few hours the blood sugar level drops and again metabolic stress.

Be careful! Too much of something good is still too much!

It’s the golden rule again. Be balanced! Even if a food is that good, too much of it makes it not good at all.
If we eat too much honey, the liver will convert the fructose and glucose into glycogen till it fills up its storage. The rest will have different roads.

The liver is the only organ that can metabolize fructose. To get rid of the rest it will break it down into three-carbon molecules which will enter the fatty acids and be carried to fat cells for storage. Today many of our modern diseases like obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure are associated with a high level of fructose.

The rest of the glucose will raise blood sugar, demanding lots of insulin, which will drive the glucose into the muscles and fat cells, where it will be stored as fat. Again.

Conclusion:

Our brain doesn’t sleep over night, like we do. It still needs energy which comes from liver glycogen. Honey is easily turned into glycogen and ensure the liver’s storage, so that it fuels the brain throughout the entire night.
Supplement your diet with honey. Take 1 to 2 tablespoons of raw honey just before bedtime. (It is hard today to find raw organic honey, but you must at least use raw!)
It will improve your sleep, your recovery physiology, eliminate or improve metabolic stress and all the potential diseases that may occur because of this.
It is not claimed that “brain starvation” over night is the only factor that leads to metabolic stress. Genes are important, internal balance is important, emotional stress and overall life-style. But physically assuring that our brain has enough fuel over night, improves our body functionality and even cures dysfunctional systems. A content brain will be able to manage the other organs in peace.

If you have any experience with eating honey before bedtime, do leave a comment here.
Also, don’t forget to spread the secret and we will help each other improve our overall health and spirit. Or, as Dr Fessenden says, be part of the Honey Revolution! Use the kindle version of this book and find out more details from the author himself: The New Honey Revolution: Restoring the Health of Future Generations.

Related articles:
• Sleep disorders cures
 Honey and Alzheimer’s natural treatment
• Bee venom a possible natural treatment for Parkinson’s disease
• Bee venom for therapy: Alzheimer’s disease

References:
Ronald Fessenden, MD, MPH, The New Honey Revolution, published by TGBTGBooks.com, May 2014
picture source:
“Girl telling a secret” picture credit dolgachov via bigstockphoto.com
liver picture credit guniitavia bigstockphoto.com
brain picture credit ktsdesign via bigstockphoto.com

One of the best foods that fuel your brain! was last modified: February 11th, 2015 by Laura

30 Responses

  1. angela says

    I love the article, very informative and i’ll do exactly that because i think i’ve been starving my brain.
    thanks.

    mary.

    • Laura says

      Thank you.
      Yes, feed your brain. 🙂
      Personally I have noticed I even have more vivid dreams. And I like this.
      Laura

  2. Damir says

    Hi, thank you for the story, and I have a question.I start my day with spoon of honey every day, is it to much to have another spoon before bed, and if it is when is better to have it only in the mornings or evenings? Thank You

    • Laura says

      Damir, a spoon of honey is perfect in the morning and perfect in the evening. In the morning will give you energy and balanced nutrients for a healthy feeling during the daytime, and in the evening will feed your brain and ensure you have a good uninterrupted sleep.
      On the left side of this page, you can find an image telling the appropiate quantities of honey, that we should take for therapeutic purposes.
      Cheers,
      Laura

  3. Cellogica Skin says

    Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful post.

    Thank you for supplying these details.

    • Laura says

      My pleasure. To say the least. I’m truly passionate about honey.
      Laura

  4. DAG says

    I purchased the books and started doing the night routine. I have found that depending on how much I’ve done during the day, anywheres, so far, from one tsp to one TBSP will do me and will sleep well. If I awake mid morning, I get up and down another one tsp and sleep some more. I’ve only been doing this now for some two weeks, give or take, so the jury is still out. Love it so far!!!

    • Laura says

      Great! I love that you decided to give it a try, in fact there is no harm in eating some honey before sleep, right? Having a satisfied brain during sleep is essential, because The Brain is The Boss, the coordinator of all that happens during sleep.

      Stabilizing the blood sugar levels, honey contributes to the release of melatonin, the hormone required for recovery and rebuilding the body tissues during rest. This is one thing that our scientists discovered, but there is so much more that they haven’t yet deciphered. Maybe in time they will. Meanwhile, we should just enjoy the benefits and taste!

      Don’t stop, and I hope after half a year you will come back here saying how great you are!
      Laura

  5. Norleila says

    Great article Laura. Honey is a complete food. It is the fuel of a vehicle. There are just too much goodness in it. Thanks for creating the awareness. Norleila

    • Laura says

      Hi Norleila, you have found some wonderful words: “the fuel of a vehicle”. 🙂 And yes, we should all be aware of how good it is for us all.
      Thanks for the visit.
      Laura

  6. Jim Murdoch says

    I have heard this before and started taking honey at bedtime. I didn’t know the reasons and the whole technicality behind it. Thanks for the clear outline.

    • Laura says

      And I thank you for your visit. Please remember to use raw honey. If you use that liquid, fake honey we have in our supermarkets it will not work at all.
      Laura

  7. Cathy says

    I didn’t know about the part where the brain sleeps at night. I do know that I wake up at some mornings feeling really brain dead and I haven’t even started my day yet. With all my recent writing, I am feeling more mentally tired than ever. I hope this honey-remedy for the brain (with some cinnamon, maybe) will do me some good. Thanks for the great tip, Laura.

    • Laura says

      You are very welcome, Cathy. I hope it will work. Take good quality honey and your brain will be in a good shape really soon. 🙂
      Laura

  8. Rich Far says

    Hi Laura,

    This post is really good – i’m excited and will be commencing this tonight, in about 15 minutes time 🙂

    At 6’4″ I weigh twice your weight, so i’ll kick off by trialing one whole tablespoon and see how that goes.

    Thank you – I look forward to your next post.

    Blessings Be,

    – Rich

    • Laura says

      Hi Rich,

      I’m glad you liked the idea and are willing to give it a try. Maybe you can also share the result here, after a while. 🙂
      Laura

  9. Sylvia says

    I used to drink honey in the morning.
    Will try to take 1 tablespoon of honey before bedtime today.
    I’m ready to feed my brain!
    Thanks for sharing the secret 😉

    • Laura says

      Hi Sylvia,

      Yes, feed your brain and let us know how it worked for you.
      Laura

  10. Scott says

    Being a diabetic, I looked over all of this information and it really helped to explain the technical side to what I have been taught by my dieticians. Thanks for the great information 🙂

    • Laura says

      Hi Scott,

      Honey is still banned for diabetics, because the scientists said that from the theory point of view it will only worse things. But these scientists could not detect and explain all components of honey and how they work together.
      Practice showed us that honey is actually helping diabetics, and now, there are doctors (like Ron Fessenden) trying to explain this for the rest of our scientific world. See more on my diabetics page.
      All changes start from somewhere, the same happened with all new things.
      The important thing is to keep an open mind.

      thanks for your comment,
      Laura

  11. McKing says

    That was a very nice and long article! It was so good, I felt hungry again hohohho 😛

    Hungry for honey that is!

    • Laura says

      That’s a good thing! If we could only replace all sugar with honey, that would be perfect!
      Laura

    • McKing says

      Hmm… sudden thought… do you have an article about adding honey to coffee (instead of sugar)?

      If none, could you research on it and let us know? I think that will be a great article indeed!! 😀

    • Laura says

      I always drink my coffee with honey. Different honeys mean different coffees. If you try once you’ll see what I mean. Besides, this combination is very good for coughing. (of course if the cough doesn’t have infectious causes) If this interests you, here are more details: http://healthywithhoney.com/one-of-the-best-foods-that-fuel-your-brain/
      Laura

  12. Zsolt says

    Great Stuff! Keep sharing valuable information!:)
    Today I learnt something very useful. I start the “homework” today!:)
    I wish you great abundance!

    • Laura says

      I’m glad I could help you learn something. join the honey revolution and live healthy and happy ever after! 🙂
      Laura

  13. Kristina says

    What an interesting post! I’ll have to start having some honey at night 🙂
    Blessings, Kristina

    • Laura says

      Hey Kristina,
      I took one tablespoon in the first night and it wasn’t that good. Half was perfect for me. Remember to get real raw honey. It’s important.
      Laura

  14. Daniel says

    That’s a really awesome read. I’m definitely going to have to start thinking about my over-night supply.

    • Laura says

      Hi Daniel, I’m glad you liked the article. I’m sure you will remember the next time you wake up in the middle of the night, without any obvious reason. 🙂
      laura

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