Honey Information

How is honey made?

Bees prepare honey from nectar which they collect from flowers and blossom of trees. They use it, as well as pollen, as food for their young. Honey is a mix of natural sugars (80%), water (18%) and minerals, vitamins, pollen, protein and amino acids (2%). Around 70% of honey's natural sugar content is made up of fructose and glucose

Varieties of Honey

Liquid or set?

Around 70% of honey's natural sugar content is made up of fructose and glucose. Clear and set honeys can be compared to ice and water - two different forms of the same thing. The more glucose a honey contains, the more likely it is to crystallize and therefore become a set honey. All honey starts off as liquid but will set eventually. The speed at which this will happen depends on the sugars they contain and the temperature at which they are kept. Both types are equally pure and contain no additives and there is no difference in the taste or nutritional value of these two states.

Is it true that honey is heated?

Heat is almost always necessary to liquefy honey in order to filter it and actually get it into the jar.  Mild heating does not damage the natural enzymes or nutrients (bees maintain a constant 94 degrees inside the hive). This is particularly important with set honey which has a naturally high glucose content.

Does heating destroy the natural flavor of honey?

Quick and/or gentle heating does not destroy the natural flavor of the honey. Nothing is ever added or taken away from honey

Health Benefits

Honey has long been recognized as a natural remedy and has been used as a medicine for thousands of years. It has antiseptic properties and can be used as a remedy for ailments from sore throats to burns and cuts. For a soothing drink for sore throats, mix honey with the juice of half a lemon, add boiling water and stir. If you’re feeling low, try a spoonful of honey as a pick-me-up. The fructose and glucose in honey are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream.

Honey in Cooking

You can use honey in cooking instead of sugar. Because it is sweeter than sugar, you need to use less. The first thing to consider when using honey to cook with is that it is judged to be twice (2 X) as sweet as sugar. Therefore, to get the same sweetness as sugar, you use one half as much as you would of sugar. Honey is about 18% water. If you round that off to 20% you can easily figure that about 1/5th of the honey you add to your recipe is water. Therefore, you cut back on the moisture in your recipe by 20% (1/5th). Honey is hydroscopic (meaning it attracts water) so it is good for baking cakes as it keeps them moist for longer. Look on our recipe pages for some delicious recipes using honey.

History and Heritage

The word ‘honey’ comes from the Germanic word ‘hunaga’ which means golden. Flowering plants which produced pollen and nectar had evolved by the Jurassic period about 150 million years ago, but the bee did not appear until 100 million years later in Asia. To put this into perspective, man has only existed for one or two million years. Thousands of years ago honey was a source of food in times of famine but was mainly regarded as a medicine, with almost religious or magical significance. Honey was the only available source of sugar in countries where it was made. By the time of the Roman Empire, honey production and beekeeping were well established.

Pollen

Bee pollen is the male seed of a flower blossom, which has been gathered by the bees and to which special elements from the bees has been added. The honeybee collects pollen and mixes it with its own digestive enzymes. One pollen granule contains from one hundred thousand to five million-pollen spores each capable of reproducing its entire species.

Bee pollen is often referred to as nature's most complete food. Human consumption of bee pollen is praised in the Bible, other religious books, and ancient Chinese and Egyptian texts. It has long been prescribed by traditional health practitioners-including the fathers of Western medicine Hippocrates, Pliny the Elder, and Pythagoras-for its healing properties.

More than 40 research studies document the therapeutic efficacy and safety of bee pollen. Clinical tests show that orally ingested bee pollen particles are rapidly and easily absorbed-they pass directly from the stomach into the blood stream. Within two hours after ingestion, bee pollen is found in the blood, in cerebral spinal fluids, and in the urine.

Bee pollen rejuvenates your body, stimulates organs and glands, enhances vitality, and brings about a longer life span. Bee pollen's ability to consistently and noticeably increase energy levels makes it a favorite substance among many world class athletes and those interested in sustaining and enhancing quality performance.

Bee pollen contains most of the known nutrients, including all of those necessary for human survival. When compared to any other food, it contains a higher percentage of all necessary nutrients. Bee pollen is approximately 25% complete protein containing at least 18 amino acids. In addition, bee pollen provides more than a dozen vitamins, 28 minerals, 11 enzymes or co-enzymes, 14 beneficial fatty acids, 11 carbohydrates, and is rich in minerals, the full spectrum of vitamins, and hormones. It is low in calories.

Several nutrients in bee pollen, such as proteins, beneficial fats, vitamins B, C, D, E, and beta-carotene, calcium, magnesium, selenium, nucleic acids, lecithin, and cysteine, are scientifically well documented for their ability to strengthen immunity, counteract the effects of radiation and chemical toxins (which are the two most severe stressors to your immune system), and generate optimal health and vitality.

Bee pollen provides anti-oxidants that scavenge free radicals caused by exposure to radiation, chemical pollutants, and other intense physical or emotional stressors. Radiation and chemical pollutants are known as the two most severe stressors to your immune system. According to the Centers for Disease Control and the Environmental Protection Agency, the two premier health-monitoring organizations in the world, this year you will be exposed to over 200 different forms of radioactive toxins and over 60,000 different chemical toxins.

Toxins by definition stress your immune system, harm other parts of your body, and cause a wide range of common health problems. All forms of radiation, and most chemical pollutants, also produce cumulative side effects. Any substance that effectively protects your body from the side effects of exposure to radiation or chemical pollutants is considered a strong immune stimulant and generator of health.

Exposure to radiation and/or chemical pollutants adversely decreases a number of vital body substances. These include antibodies and other white blood cells (your immune response); red blood cells; and nutrients in blood and mother's milk, such as protein and the antioxidant vitamins C and E.

Bee pollen is documented to counteract the effects that radiation and chemical pollutants have on these important barometers of health. Equally important, bee pollen has been proven clinically to generate health.

Bee pollen significantly reduced the usual side effects of both radium and cobalt-60 radiotherapy in twenty-five women who had been treated for inoperable uterine cancer. The women who took the pollen were considerably healthier and had stronger immunological responses. These women registered beneficial increases in a number of areas, including red and white blood cell counts and serum protein levels. The women also reported feeling an improved sense of well-being. Bee pollen proved beneficial for nausea, poor appetite after radiation treatments, sleep disorders, urinary and rectal disorders, and for general decline and weakness after treatment. The dosage of bee pollen received by these women was twenty grams, which is about 70% of an ounce, or approximately two teaspoons, taken three times per day.

X-rays, radiation, and many environmental pollutants break down some of your body's proteins, thus producing histamine, which then causes several allergic responses. Various laboratory analyses, and the patients' subjective reports, confirmed that bee pollen counteracted these responses, including weakened immune system and sickness.

Researchers found that bee pollen strengthened the immune systems of mice, improved their resistance to x-rays, and has antibacterial and antiviral properties. Bee pollen prevented the development of cancerous tumors in mice.

Bee pollen proves to be quite useful for activity enhancement and sports nutrition. It produces an accelerated rate of recovery, including a return to normal heart rate, breathing, and readiness for the next event. Bee pollen improves second and subsequent performances. [Humans not receiving bee pollen show declining performances. It provides energy, stamina, and strength, and enhances performance levels.

Bee pollen should not be confused with the pollen that is blown by the wind and is a common cause of allergies. Allergy-causing pollen is called anemophiles; it is light and easily blown by the wind. Bee pollen is heavier and stickier, and is collected off of bees' legs by special devices placed at the entrance to hives. It is called entomophiles or "friends of the insects," and will rarely cause allergy symptoms.

Many people with allergies and hay fever safely and effectively ingest bee pollen. 73% of patients with hay fever averaged a 75% improvement when given bee pollen orally. 78% of asthma patients averaged a 75% improvement in taking bee pollen orally. 17.8% of hay fever patients and 33.3% of asthma patients showed a complete, 100%, improvement with oral bee pollen-usually the sooner bee pollen treatment began pre-seasonally the greater the rate of healing. Quercetin in bee pollen inhibits the release of histamine in the body. It may be one of the contributing factors in decreasing allergic and hay fever responses.

Bee pollen improves fertility. It can reduce cholesterol levels. Bee pollen improved the condition of men with prostatitis. It produced therapeutic benefits in patients with glycohaemia (abnormal amount of blood sugar), low hemoglobin, and bleeding ulcers.

Bee pollen, royal jelly, and vitamin C were given to menopausal women for 30 days, after which 82% were symptom-free. Patients with kidney insufficiency were fed bee pollen and showed great improvement. Bee pollen promotes healing of a wide variety of other health problems.

Regarding safety, I have observed that a small percent of people who initially ingest large amounts may occasionally experience minor gastrointestinal irritation and a laxative effect or a rare allergic reaction.

One 1983 research study corroborates my clinical experience. It is unclear whether this effect is due to the person being very sensitive; or due to poor quality pollen such as gathered from commercially sprayed flowers; or improperly cleaned, dried, or stored pollen, which therefore may contain debris or mold-causing moisture. I have also clinically observed that large amounts of bee pollen may be contraindicated for some people with gout as it may elevate purine or uric acid levels.

For preventive purposes, a common initial adult dosage of bee pollen granules is initially 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon once per day. The dosage is gradually increased to 1-2 teaspoons one to three times per day. Adults suffering from allergies are best advised to start off with one to three granules daily, and then to gradually increase to higher doses-usually over a period of one month or more. Pollen is also available in gelatin caps, tablets, mixed with other bee products, as a liquid, tincture, cream, and salve. For preventive purposes, the suggested amount is two 450-580 mg. capsules three to four times daily. A short term, therapeutic amount of bee pollen is about three times the preventive amount. Bee pollen should not be cooked.

A nutritional test supervised by the station at Bures demonstrated that pollen is a complete food by letting several successive generations of mice be born and live without the least sign of distress while nourishing them exclusively on pollen. It has also been noted the intestinal-balancing action of bee pollen in stricken people, the favorable action on anemic children or those lacking in appetite. Bee Pollen stimulates the production of hemoglobin, the oxygen carrying red blood cells. The large proportion of free amino acids, especially methionine, a specific medicine for the liver, explains the favorable action of bee pollen on that organ.

Bee pollen is today's answer for our present day culture of consuming incomplete foods with added chemicals, which expose us to physiological problems as various as they are numerous. An Organism weakened by a deficient dietary regimen becomes more subject to microbial infections and other disorders. Nutritional deficiencies and the breakdown of internal chemical balance generates diseased state for which the consumption of bee pollen works miracles.

Beeswax

BEESWAX USES

Beeswax is an excellent dry lubricant and waterproofing agent.  Simply warm the bar of wax in your hand or under running hot water and rub on the area to be treated.

HOUSEHOLD USES

Sliding desk drawers
Combination and wood window tracks
Sliding patio door tracks
Shower door tracks
Lubricating wood screws for easy threading
Waxing and quilting and sewing thread
Waterproofing sewn seams on shoes
Waterproofing leather shoes and boots
Preparing furniture polishes
Hand dipped and poured candles
Figurines
Waxing drill bits
Waxing zippers
Cast-iron cleaner and sealer
Iron Cleaner

OUTDOORS USES

Waterproofing seams on tents and tarps
Waxing snow skis, sleds, and ice skates
Grafting wax for fruit tree grafting
Sealing holes in horses hoofs

SPORTSMAN USES

Fly tying
Waxing crossbow and bow strings
Waterproofing leather field boots
Outboard motor cables and parts
Fishing rods and reels
Gunstocks
Ammunition loading

AUTOMOTIVE USES

Dry/squeaky fan belts
Car keys sticking in door locks
Seatbelt latches and releases
Door latch posts on car doors

COSMETIC USES

Lip balm
Facial/hand creams
Plucking eyebrows