Even though I have already asked a question about honey (find it here) I am still feel I am missing some important information somewhere.. I just finished reading Stephen Buchner's 'Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers' which had a whole section devoted to mead and other hive products. I was blown away by honey's amazing properties - I just cannot ignore the profound medicinal, mythical and god-like status given to honey and hive products in the past in reference by so many to the Elixir of Life.......
Many people who wrote answers to my last honey question seemed to think that eating honey was akin to eating sugar and it is generally OK in small amounts. But I want to know about the HEALING properties of honey and hive products.....propolis, pollen, Royal Jelly etc.
Does anyone have any experience with honey/hive products? I read that Royal Jelly is fantastic for people recovering from injury/illness.....and other sources (see above book) truly claim that it is indeed the secret to Longevity.
I am looking for more information about all this, but searching on Amazon, I seem to have hit a deluge of books about the history of bees and man, but nothing on the SCIENTIFIC evidence behind these medicinal claims or studies done to prove/disprove them.
I have been looking into this and I just see so many reports about raw honey, propolis, pollen, bee venom and Royal Jelly being life giving, rejuvenating, regulatory, and all the rest.
Pliny the Elder in the 1st century A.D. researched the health of people who eat a high proportion of hive products (and were bee keepers) and found many of them living well into the 100's - some until 125 years of age.
I cannot accept the fact that honey is just another 'sugar' - it contains 75 different compounds, some of which have not been identified yet: protein, calcium, phosporus, iron, niacin, vit C, A, complete B's D, E, K, magnesium, sulphur, chlorine, potassium, iodine, sodium, copper, manganese and live enzymes. It also contains high concentrations of hydrogen peroxide and formic acid. Pollen is the best source of protein and rutin (vit P), and is exceptionally high in water soluble vitamins, 9 amino acids and HGH. Royal Jelly contains 10-hydroxy-2-decenoic acid (good for fighting infection), all 8 essential amino acids, hormones, B vits, nucleic acids, sugars, sterols, fatty acids and acetylcholine.
It possesses antibiotic, antibacterial, antiviral, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, anti-allergenic, laxative, anti-anemic and tonic properties and that is just honey. The other products are even more complex, even more amazing in their ability to regulate and rejuvenate the body.
Hive products were mostly taken in Near-Antiquity in the form of mead; which was made by placing the whole hive (including bees) into hot water and fermenting it with yeast and other medicinal plants. It was called 'nectar of the gods' or ambrosia, the 'brew of poetic inspiration', bees were also a symbol of immortality and wisdom from the otherworld for many cultures such as Ancient Egyptian, Greek, Norse, Celtic, Hindu and the Mithras cult and many African and Australian 'tribes'. Basically wherever bees/honey are found, they are revered.......
Estimates of age place the rock painting depicted above at approximately 15,000 years old. Discovered in the early 1900's in Valencia , Spain in the Cave of the Spider (Cueve de la Arana) situated on the river Cazunta, the painting speaks of man's long fascination with honey. Before our ancestors could write, they recorded this honey hunting event in bold red paint.
The fact that honey seems to be able to be preserved somewhat indefinitely (re: Stancel's 3,000 old tomb honey) seems to me an indication that it was consumed regularly by our ancestors and for us to avoid it just because we think it must produce an insulin response seems to me to be throwing the baby out with the bath water......
researchers in Belgium noted:
The nutritional tests supervised by the station at Bures on mice have demonstrated that pollen is a complete food, that it is possible to let several generations be born and live without the least sign of distress while nourishing them exclusively on bee pollen.
from Rita Elkins: "Bee Pollen, Royal Jelly, Propolis and Honey" Woodland Publishing 1996
My own experience with honey/pollen: gives me a huge amount of extra energy, it is allergy/skin-clearing and lessens daily sugar and carb cravings.
My family utilizes LOCAL honey in the late fall and winter for spring allergies. It's not a significant amount or even utilized daily and we have noticed a difference. We also use it if one of use were to develop a bad cough as it is a natural cough suppresent.
Locally i've found Royal Honey (is white, is in his purest form), is what the queen bee eats. I dont think our ancestors have time to put on a jar the honey, besides of being dangerous to get, the eating form could have been directly from the source, so they might chew the waxy part and the honey, that blend of wax and honey is the purest form of it, the royal honey. that honey looks like this.
Also i found something very peculiar here in Colombia. Honey farmers establish the bees hives in the middle of orange plantation, or berries plantation with the intention that the bees recolect polen only from thes plants flowers, so it change completly the flavor and colour of the honey.
Makes an excellent topical antibiotic and is good for the skin. I suspect it may have healing powers. Probably easy to digest. However, is definitely bad for blood sugar and weight loss. And you don't need to 'heal' if there is no injury. So I think this might be a situation where the benefits of honey depend on the circumstances. I think that it's important to consider that some things can be good for some people but not good for others.
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