Honey has been eaten by man for many thousands of years. There is a petroglyph discovered in 1919 in the Arafla Cave at Bicorp, near Valencia in Spain. In this painting a naked man stands, basket in hand, at the top of a crude grass ladder.

He appears to be gathering something from a natural hole in the rock and around him bees are in flight from their nest. Art experts think this painting may date back between 12,000 and 15,000 years. This is almost certainly a depiction of a type of ancient beekeeping. In fact the man might have been collecting combs containing not only golden sweetness, but pollen and larvae as well.

Today we might be too squeamish to eat combs containing protein rich grubs. A bear raiding a hive has no such qualms and I’m sure that early Spaniard with the ladder was no less enthusiastic.

The nectar which bees collect mixes with enzymes in the bee’s stomach and is then deposited in cells inside the hive. The nectar is comprised of 80% water. Bees evaporate this by fanning with their wings until it contains less than about 18% before capping the cells for storage.

They rarely get it wrong, if the water content is greater than 18% it can spoil by fermentation. The evaporation of this water is used in part like a swamp-cooler, to cool the hive. On a warm summer evening when the bees have been collecting nectar all day you can sometimes smell the nectar and feel a warm draft coming from the hive entrance.

Most medical experts agree that it contains completely natural antibiotic properties and an anti-microbial agent. This simply means it can stop the growth of all types of bacteria and yeast infections plus keep us so healthy we could quite possibly do away without any further visits or at least reduce dramatically our visits to the local drugstore or doctor. Click here for a wealth of information about the health benefits of honey.

Man took advantage of this, fermented mead may have been man’s first alcohol. It doesn’t ferment as readily as grape juice, which may account for the greater popularity of wine rather than mead.

The familiar liquid style seems to be the most popular in Southern California. To purchase San Diego Honey go to the Sales Page. Creamed is my favorite since it spreads on toast so well without too much dripping. The pinnacle of all the types available must be comb.

comb honey
Click here to order San Diego Honey.There are as many varieties as there are different nectar producing plants The National Board has a search-able database of plant specific varieties from various locations.

One Response to “Honey, the Wonder Food?”

  • Oleg


    Honey graining/crystallization

    The pumped honey has the ability to crystallize (the process of turning sugar into crystals/grains). The ratio of fructose and glucose determines the crystallization velocity. The more glucose is in honey, the faster crystallization runs.

    The crystallization depends on the temperature. The suitable temperature for rapid crystallization is 13-14°С. During reducing of temperature the formation of crystals is being decreased because of increasing of viscosity. At temperatures above 14° C the ability to form crystals is reduced, and at 40° C crystals are dissolved (but honey loses its medicinal properties).

    Crystallization (granulation) does not degrade the quality of the honey; the crystals only give a certain look and appeal to it.

    Honey graining does not have negative effect on honey quality, imparting it appealing appearance.

    Honey stability against heating

    The honey has a low level of resistance against heating. Limited temperature at which honey can lose its special health properties and turns into a sweet substance (in simple glucose-fructose syrup) is 40° C.

    By heating nutritional and medicinal properties of the heated product (honey) are reduced due to the following:

    * loss of the bactericidal properties and flavor;

    * changes of the color of honey and – it gets darker, sometimes brown;

    * reducing of honey quality. The proper honey storage means the storage in normal state, excluding unnecessary heating.
    Honey aroma

    Each honey grade has its certain aroma which depends on different substances (about 120 names) contained in nectar. The nectar of bee plants is characterized by different ratio of aroma substances. Therefore the honey produced by bees from sugar syrup without nectar can be easily detected due to the absence of aroma.

    One of the interesting honey qualities is its viscosity, which depends directly on temperature. Cooling of honey from +30° C to +20 ° C increases the viscosity of honey 4 times. Bactericidal effect of honey

    Honey has bactericidal effect, which is expressed in the following:

    * increases metabolism;

    * accelerates tissue regeneration;

    * anti-inflammatory; (has anti-inflammatory properties)

    * resolving and tonic effect; (has resolving and tonic effect)

    * normalizes the gastrointestinal tract,

    * stimulates the function of internal organs,

    * warns sclerosis,

    * normalizes sleep,

    * stimulates the body defenses, etc.;

    * it is completely sterile product due to the content of special substance – inhibin produced by bees` body during honey production.

    Artificial honey produced out of sugar has no curative properties characteristic of natural honey.

    External honey use

    External use of honey allows to:

    * disinfect;

    * kill all the germs, staphylococci, etc.;

    * enhance blood circulation;

    * lead to the purification of tissue;

    * honey combs are applied for the treatment of eyes cataract.

    Historical facts about external use of honey

    It is known that during the World War I and World War II, physicians used honey for applying of bandages. Such bandages allowed avoiding unpleasant cleaving to the skin, and wounds covered quickly forming new epithelium.

    Internal honey use

    Honey is famous for its health properties, because:
    * honey is a powerful energy supply as it has 100% nutrient availability by human organism. Some physicians recommend athletes to eat 200 g of honey for some time before the sporting competition to get a boost of energy;

    * honey is the neutralizer of alcohols: it is used during treatment of alcoholism due to the ability to cause the aversion to alcohol;

    * honey as prevention of dental diseases and the diseases of oral cavity: long and careful chewing of comb honey until the complete disappearance of honey flavor is good prevention of dental caries, gingivitis and stomatitis.

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