Sweet, sweet honey … its perfect as a natural sweetener (if you are not vegan) and beneficial for our bods on the inside and out!
Just make sure you are using Raw Honey though, that’s the pot of real gold.
Not the commercial brands that you might have used before. See, Raw Honey has not been heated, pasteurized or processed and the differences between these two is vast peeps.
Raw Honey is taken directly from the bee hive and is an alkaline-forming food with a range of vitamins, antioxidants and nutrients that are destroyed during the heating and pasteurization process of commercial honey, not so sweet. So if you are looking to use honey – go raw!
WARNING: Infants under 1 year should NOT be given Raw Honey – Raw Honey may contain traces of botulism spores which can lead to serious illness and even paralysis in infants.
So what are some of the benefits that Raw Honey can offer?
- Improve digestive health by promoting good bacteria in our belly
- Rich in antioxidants that can help our bodies fight disease
- Strengthening for our immune systems
- Contains anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties making it great to help with the healing of wounds and various infections
- Can help to balances our sugar levels while giving us a sustained energy boost
- Can work like a natural expectorant helping with nasty coughs
- Added to a warm glass of milk at night honey may help us to benefit from a more restful sleep
- Works like a drawing agent for bites, stings & skin infections
- Helps treat acne thanks to its soothing nature and anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties
- Antibiotic properties makes raw honey effective for treating colds and sore throats
- Helps to relieve symptoms of anxiety
- Can work as a weight loss aid, helping to digest the fat stored in our body when mixed with warm water
Do you know how honey is made?
Honey starts out as flower nectar (water & complex sugars), this nectar is collected by bees, using their long tongues to suck the nectar out of the flowers. They then store this nectar in their tummy until they have filled it completely. Honeybees have two tummies – one for storing nectar and the other is their regular stomach. Once the honeybees honey tummy is full, they return to the hive and pass on the nectar to the worker bees.
The worker bees chew the nectar to produce enzymes that break down the complex sugars into simple sugars making it easier for the bees to digest and to prevent it from growing bacteria whilst it is stored in the hive. Once this is done these busy bees spread the nectar throughout the honeycombs around the hive. While the nectar is in the honeycomb the water content begins to evaporate allowing the nectar to thicken forming a syrup. They sometimes even speed up this process by fanning it with their wings. Once this syrup is the right consistency (sticky honey) they seal off the honeycombs with wax and store it away until it is ready to be eaten.
Colours and flavours of honey will vary depending on the flowers that the nectar was taken from. Honey does darken due to storage and heating so generally the rule of thumb is the lighter the better – but this not always the case. Here are just a few varieties of Honey you can find, with varying beneficial properties.
Alfalfa Honey – One of the most common honey varieties use widely as an everyday table honey it is typically white or very light in colour
Acacia Honey – liver cleansing, promotes a healthy digestive system and can help reduce inflammation, it is very pale in colour and is used most commonly as a natural sweetener in beverages like tea. Cheers.
Buckwheat Honey – not easy to find but when you do it is rich in antioxidant properties. It is thick and dense inhabiting a deep purple colour.
Heather Honey – contains high levels of protein and is usually an orange or dark amber colour
Linden Honey – is used for its antiseptic and sedative properties treating conditions like anxiety, insomnia, coughs and colds and is typically light yellow in colour.
Neem Honey – Used widely in Ayurveda medicinal practices for skin conditions, infections and allergies.
Manuka Honey – Used widely to treat wounds and infections this honey is dark in colour and not overly sweet.
Try my Sweet as Honey Smoothie – basic but delicious!
- 1 cup almond milk
- 2 Tbsp Raw Honey
- 1 banana
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- Tbsp chia seeds
- 1/4 cup Organic shredded coconut
- Put all the ingredients into the Vitamix 2L container in the order listed and secure the lid.
- Select Variable 1. Turn the machine on and quickly increase the speed to 10, then override to High.
- Use tamper to effectively press the ingredients into the blades if required whilst processing.
- Blend for 60-90 seconds or until desired consistency is reached.
- Stop the machine and serve.
Top with bee pollen or drizzle with honey and enjoy!
On a side note: Save the Bees!
Did you know that honeybees are responsible for one third of the food we consume, including most of the fruits, vegetables, nuts and even alfalfa used to feed livestock. The honeybees play an essential role in the pollination of these crops and pollination is important because it leads to the production of these foods that we consume on a regular basis.
So here is the problem. The world’s bee population is rapidly declining. This is extremely concerning … a world without pollinators would be devastating to food production and the way we exist.
So why are the bees disappearing? Well, the truth is scientists are still unsure, but it is speculated that various environmental toxins and pesticides are the prime offenders. Without the bees and many other pollinating insects, our way of life is threatened not just the lives of the beautiful bees … this is a huge and complex issue and we need to be talking about it. If you would like further information about The Bees Decline head to http://sos-bees.org/ you can also add your voice to thousands of people across the globe who want to help Save the Bees! You can also check out this amazing documentary Vanishing of the Bees available through our online store.