The universal and natural craving for sweets of some kind proves best that there is a true need for them in the human system. Children, who expend lots of energy, have a real "passion" for sweets. This is really instinct. Proteins will replace and build tissues but it is the function and assignment of carbohydrates to create and replace heat and energy, and to provide what we call Honey, which contains two invert sugars, levulose and dextrose, has many advantages as a food substance. While cane-sugar and starches, as already intimated, must undergo during digestion a process of inversion which changes them into grape and fruit-sugars, in honey this is already accomplished because it has been predigested by the bees, inverted and concentrated. This saves the stomach additional labor. For a healthy human body, which is capable of digesting sugar, the actuality that honey is an already predigested sugar has less importance, but in a case of weak digestion, especially in those who lack invertase and amylase and depend on monosaccarides, it is a different matter and deserves consideration.
The consummation of this predigestive act is accomplished by the enzymes invertase, amylase and catalase, which are produced by the worker bee in such large quantities that they can be found in every part of their bodies. However, there is plenty of it left in honey for our benefit. The remarkable convertive power of these enzymes can be pif oven by a simple experiment. If we add one or two tablespoonful of raw honey to a pint of concentrated solution of sucrose, the mixture will soon be changed into invert sugar. The addition of boiled honey, in which the enzymes have been destroyed, will not accomplish such a change.
The frequent Biblical references to milk and honey demonstrate the importance of these two oldest aliments. Neither, how-ever, is a complet food nor a proper nutriment alone for a long period of time. They are effective only to supplement deficiencies of other food substances.Milk has many drawbacks. As mentioned, it is an excellent breeding medium for bacteria. The inhabitants of the East quickly sour the milk of cows, goats, sheep, mares and camels and prepare curds and cheese from it, because in warm climates milk cannot be preserved otherwise. Honey, on the other hand, requires little attention and does not deteriorate even in the tropics. Honey has often been given reference over milk. It is not surprising that Van Helmont gave milk the epithet, "brute's food" and suggested bread, boiled in ber and honey, as a substitute. Liebig also recommended a substitute for milk. Honey has many advantages as a staple article of diet to secure optimum nutrition.