Raw honey is honey that hasn’t been heated or pasteurized, and it contains natural vitamins, enzymes, powerful antioxidants, and other important nutrients. Raw honey has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties, and promotes digestive health.
Raw, local honey also contains a blend of local pollen, which can strengthen a person’s immune system, and reduce pollen allergy symptoms.
When honey is removed from the hive, it needs to be strained to remove parts of bee bodies and pieces of wax. If a coarse strainer is used without heating, then the honey will contain the pollen that was present in the original honey from the local area. If this local honey is ingested regularly, it can reduce pollen allergy symptoms in humans.
By supporting local honey producers, you can verify that the honey you’re purchasing is truly raw and has the beneficial properties that humans have used for centuries to treat many ailments.
Most commercial honey; however, does not use the processing method described above. Instead, very fine filters are used along with heat to create pasteurized honey that no longer contains pollen but that has a long shelf life. This pasteurized, ultra-filtered honey does not have the nutritional benefits of raw honey.
In the U.S., the FDA says that any product that’s been ultra-filtered and no longer contains pollen isn’t honey. But, no ones checking U.S. honey to see if it contains pollen.
Ultra filtering is a procedure where honey is heated, sometimes watered down, and then forced at high pressure through extremely small filters to remove pollen (which is the only foolproof method of identifying the source of the honey). It’s a technique refined by the Chinese, who have illegally dumped tons of their honey (some containing illegal antibiotics and other substances such as heavy metals) on the U.S. market for years.
1. Treats Diaper Dermatitis, Psoriasis and Eczema
Beeswax is a great choice for many skin conditions. A honey, beeswax and olive oil mixture is useful in the treatment of diaper dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema. A study conducted by the Dubai Specialized Medical Center and Medical Research Labs Islamic Establishment for Education was designed to investigate the effects of these three substances and the mixture on growth of Staphylococcus aureus and candida albicans isolated from human specimens.
The study conducted two experiments: one where a honey mixture was poured on holes made on plates seeded with Staphylococcus aureus or candida and two where the microorganisms were cultured onto media made of the honey mixture alone, nutrient agar-honey mixture and Sabouraud glucose agar-honey mixture. Ultimately, the study concluded that honey and the honey mixtures could inhibit growth of bacteria that may affect the skin and cause skin conditions.
2. Moisturizes Skin
Beeswax is an amazing way to moisturize the skin and is commonly found in skin care products and cosmetics. It can help protect and repair rough, dry or chapped skin because it has the ability to lock in moisture.
In the book “How to Use Beeswax and Honey to Cure Skin Problems,” author Gene Ashburner explains that this wax has rich vitamin A content and emollient properties, which soften and rehydrate the skin as well as aiding in the healthy development of cellular reconstruction. Another benefit to its use is that because it is comedogenic, it won’t clog pores.
In addition to being a natural moisturizer that treats dry skin, you can use it daily to help prevent dry skin in the first place. Just combine beeswax with almond oil or jojoba oil, a few drops of vitamin E oil and aloe to prepare a homemade remedy for dry skin.
3. Protects the Liver
In 2013, the Korean Journal of Internal Medicine published a study that investigated the alcohols found in honeycomb and if their antioxidant effects helped protect the liver. Researchers conducted the study using a mixture of beeswax alcohol to evaluate the safety and effectiveness in people with fatty liver disease. The study was conducted for a period of 24 weeks, finding that it helped normalize liver function and improve symptoms of fatty liver.
4. Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Research reports that very long-chain fatty alcohols obtained from plant waxes have been reported to lower cholesterol in humans. The nutritional or regulatory effects produced by wax esters or aliphatic acids and alcohols found in unrefined cereal grains, beeswax and many plant-derived foods lower low-density lipoprotein (“bad”) cholesterol by 21 percent to 29 percent and raise high-density lipoprotein (“good”) cholesterol by 8 percent to 15 percent.
5. Relieves Pain and Is Anti-Inflammatory
As medicine, beeswax has been studied in the use of relieving pain and inflammation and has mild anti-swelling effects. A 2014 study published in the Korean Journal of Internal Medicine reports that it was used to helped relieve inflammation caused by osteoarthritis. All randomized patients completed the study, and 23 experienced a reduction in pain, joint stiffness and physical function. These reductions were significant beginning in the second week and became enhanced during the trial.
6. Clears Acne
Beeswax is one of the most well-known home remedies for acne. It has strong antiseptic, healing and anti-inflammatory properties, making it effective in the treatment of acne, in particular because it contains vitamin A.
It’s also an excellent skin softener and emollient that helps maintain a smooth skin texture after acne elimination. The combination of skin care applications, a healthy diet and daily exercise is the best way to control and prevent acne.
7. Heals Dry, Cracked Lips
The natural moisturizers in beeswax make it the perfect lip balm. If you suffer from cracked or chapped lips, topical applications of beeswax and a few other ingredients can provide some much-needed relief.
It’s easy to make your own lip balm by combining it with coconut oil, honey, vitamin E oil, and your favorite essential oils, such as orange, peppermint, lavender or lemon.
8. Reduces Stretch Marks
Stretch marks can be embarrassing and prevent you from wearing some of your favorite summer fashions, so if you’re wondering how to get rid of stretch marks, you may want to try beeswax. Due to its ability to protect the skin and retain water, it can have positive effects on those unsightly marks.
A study conducted by the Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Biology Research Institute at Yonsei University College of Medicine in Korea reports that stretch marks are dermal atrophic scars with epidermal thinning due to decreased collagenand elastic fiber. The study suggests that collagen is a major extracellular matrix component that’s very important in wound healing. Since beeswax contains vitamin A, which is helpful in collagen production, it can greatly benefit the reduction of stretch marks.
By combining beeswax, royal jelly, shea or cocoa butter, grapeseed oil, and coconut oil, you have a natural remedy for preventing and treating stretch marks while helping improve collagen levels simultaneously.
9. Treats Jock Itch and Fungal Skin Infections
Jock itch and fungal skin infections are definitely annoying, but they can be treated using beeswax. Because it’s anti-inflammatory, it can help reduce the pain associated with jock itch and fungal skin infections while provide moisturizing benefits to help reduce the itching.
Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey and olive oil to the affected area three times daily for four weeks can help improve jock itch and fungal skin infections greatly.
10. Relieves Stress and Promotes Relaxation
It’s common to think of beeswax candles when you think of beeswax. This is a good thing since candles made from paraffin can endanger your health and that of your family due to the soot from paraffin wax that can be inhaled. Also, it can cause significant damage to the inside of your house, such as your computers, electrical appliances and ductwork.
Instead, opt for these natural candles, which work well as stress relievers.
If making your own candles, you want to check labels to make sure you get organic beeswax since it’s free of toxins. If you’re buying already-made beeswax candles, choosing 100 percent beeswax candles with cotton wicks is definitely the best choice.
Bee propolis is defined as a resinous mixture that honey bees produce by combining their own saliva and beeswax with exuded substances they collect from tree buds, sap flows and other botanical sources. Propolis color can vary depending on what the bee collects from nature to create it, but usually bee propolis is a shade of dark brown.
Propolis serves a huge purpose in the world of honey bees. They use it to seal undesirable small cracks and gaps in the hive (larger gaps get filled with beeswax). This is hugely important because if these openings don’t get sealed up properly, the hive could have some very threatening invaders like snakes and lizards.
When scientists have looked closer at the exact chemical composition of propolis, they have found that it actually contains over 300 natural compounds, including amino acids, coumarins, phenolic aldehydes, polyphenols, sequiterpene quinines and steroids. In general, raw propolis is made up of approximately 50 percent resins, 30 percent waxes, 10 percent essential oils, 5 percent pollen and 5 percent of various organic compounds. The interesting thing about propolis, which is also true for honey, is that its composition is always going to vary depending upon the exact collection time, collection location and plant sources.
In case you’re thinking that bee propolis is a new health craze, I want to tell you that this bee product’s usage is said to date all the way back to the time of Aristotle circa 350 B.C. Ancient Egyptians were also known for using propolis in their mummification process while the ancient Greeks and Assyrians loved it for its wound- and tumor-healing abilities.
Science and personal experience continue to show that bee propolis remains an incredibly medicinal substance today. Now, let’s look at some specific propolis benefits.
Using Honey for Your Dog’s Allergies
Like us, many dogs too suffer from environmental allergies. Spring, summer and fall can trigger these sensitivities in dogs with symptoms such as rubbing the face, licking feet and thighs and scratching.
However, it’s important to make sure that you’re not confusing what you think are environmental allergies and your dog’s real problem is a food allergy (or both).
Follow the guidelines below for using honey for a dog with allergies:
What type of honey to use: Make sure your purchase local raw, unfiltered honey, or better yet, purchase local raw wild flower honey. The wild flower honey will give your dog the best results because it covers so many different plants and flowers. This can often be purchased from bee farms.
**Avoid Manuka honey when using for allergies since you need a local, raw honey**
Directions: 1 Tablespoon of raw wildflower local honey twice daily for large dogs such as labs. Use this as a guide and adjust according to the size of your dog. You must do this daily or the allergy symptoms will reappear.
Using Honey as A Wound Dressing for Burns, Infections, Hot Spots & Pressure Sores for Dogs:
What type of honey to use: The best honey to use for burns, infections and pressure sores is pure Manuka Honey.
Clinical trials show that applying honey as a wound dressing eliminates bacterial infections, reduces inflammation, swelling and pain, and increases the growth of new skin. It seals and keeps the area moist (including skin grafts) while protecting from sticking to bandages.
Directions for burns: Trim the hair around the burn. You’ll want to wash the burned area with vinegar and apply a thick coat of honey every 10 minutes until the pain decreases. Apply a LIGHT bandage over the area. Don’t allow your dog to lick or bother the area. A Elizabethan collar might be necessary for awhile.Directions for pressure sores: Trim the hair around the area. Gently blot to clean the wound. You can apply the honey directly by very gently placing a little honey over the wound with a clean spatula. Cover with a non-stick pad and wrap with gauze (not too tight). You can also apply the honey directly to the non-stick pad and then wrap with gauze to keep in place.
Directions for hot spots: You MUST trim or shave the hair surrounding the hot spot until you can see healthy skin . If not, all the bacteria, pus and infection become trapped within the hair. It’s also critical that you clean the area before applying the honey. You can use Povidone Iodine that most pharmacy’s or even supermarkets carry. Dilute a little of the Povidone Iodine with water to an ice tea color. Then use soft gauze to gently blot and clean the hot spot. Do this a minimum of twice daily. Apply a light layer of Manuka honey to your dog’s hot spot. Do the process of cleaning and applying the Manuka honey a minimum of twice daily. If the hot spot grows instead of getting smaller, seek veterinary care immediately.
Precaution: When using honey as a wound dressing, it’s very important to use Manuka Honey in liquid form, which means it should be soft and pour easily. Do not use crystallized honey on a burn or open wound! The crystals are sharp and can cause even more pain to your dog’s open wound.
How to soften crystallized or hard honey: Place the jar in a pot of very hot water (don’t microwave) until it can easily be poured. Cool before placing on your pet.
3. Honey for Kennel CoughWhat type of honey to use: Manuka honey is needed for dogs with symptoms of Kennel Cough.
Directions: Feed 1/2 up to 1 teaspoon depending on your dog’s weight. Administer 4 times daily.4. Honey for Your Dog’s DigestionWhat type of honey to use: Again, Manuka honey works best for digestive issues.
Directions: Large dogs 1 tablespoon a day, medium dogs 2 teaspoons a day, small dogs 1 teaspoon a day.
5. Honey May Boost Your Old Dog’s Energy Level
Honey is a natural source of carbohydrates which increases energy.
What type of honey to use: You can use either Manuka or a local honey when it comes to boosting energy.
Apitherapy is the art of using bee products – everything from honey to venom – to have more energy and to control your biology. Modern science is now discovering the power of bee products, but we’re hardly the first people to use bees as a source of natural medicine. In fact, apitherapy may be one of the oldest biohacks around; its origins trace back to ancient Greece, Egypt, and China.
Studies show that bee products may help manage autoimmune diseases, cancer, Alzheimer’s, HPV, Lyme Disease, multiple sclerosis, and arthritis – bacteria in bee stomachs could even act as alternatives to antibiotics.
You’ve probably heard about eating small amounts of raw honey to improve your sleep, but have you heard about using bee venom to hack your immune system? Propolis for inflammation? Pollen for allergies (how’s that for a contradiction?)? What about nutrient-dense royal jelly, associated with enhanced brain function, increased metabolism, improved mood, and about a dozen other upgrades for your body?
Read on to learn more about these powerful – and unusual – biohacks. Some have more evidence behind them than others – I’ll talk about that too.
Can bee venom therapy make for a Bulletproof immune system?
Bee venom therapy is exactly what it sounds like – getting stung by bees in a controlled setting. That’s the traditional approach. The FDA has also approved a venom extract called Apex Venenum Purum, and it’s widely available.
This is one reason why, when my 5-year-old son got stung for the first time by a bee, I praised his new “bee powers” which magically made the pain go away.
Why would you want to swallow (or inject) extracted bee venom? Well, it turns out there may be more than a few benefits to this odd biohack.
Here’s the theory behind bee venom therapy: bee venom only causes slight inflammation, but in many people (even those who aren’t allergic to bee stings), the immune system mounts an unnecessarily large response to it. Your brain triggers excessive release of several hormones that control immune response, and once they take care of the bee venom, the leftover hormones can deal with other immune problems.
To be clear – this mechanism still a theory. We don’t yet fully understand the process behind bee venom therapy. However, there’s growing research supporting bee venom therapy’s effectiveness in all kinds of immune system-related issues.
One study found that venom regulated thyroid function in women with hyperthyroidism.
Bee venom enhanced the effectiveness of arthritis medication in individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. It also decreased arthritis-related edema – that’s when joints fill with fluid and become swollen.
"Ѕіmрlу рut, hоnеу іѕ а hіghlу соnсеntrаtеd ѕugаr (саrbоhуdrаtе) ѕоlutіоn. Турісаllу, іt соntаіnѕ mоrе thаn 70% саrbоhуdrаtеѕ аnd lеѕѕ thаn 20% wаtеr. Іt іѕ оbvіоuѕ thаt іn реrсеntаgе tеrmѕ, ѕugаrѕ аrе рrеdоmіnаnt. Тhіѕ mеаnѕ thаt wаtеr іn hоnеу соntаіnѕ muсh grеаtеr аmоunt оf ѕugаrѕ thаn іt саn nаturаllу dіѕѕоlvе. Тhе оvеrаbundаnсе оf ѕugаrѕ mаkеѕ thе ѕоlutіоn unѕtаblе. Ѕіnсе еvеrуthіng іn nаturе ѕееkѕ bаlаnсе, іnсludіng hоnеу, сrуѕtаllіzаtіоn іѕ аn аbѕоlutеlу nаturаl рhеnоmеnоn whісh оссurѕ whеn gluсоѕе ѕераrаtеѕ frоm wаtеr, аftеr whісh gluсоѕе rеmаіnѕ іn thе fоrm оf сrуѕtаlѕ аnd thе іnіtіаl соnсеntrаtеd ѕоlutіоn gеtѕ іntо а bаlаnсеd ѕtаtе. Lеt uѕ gо іntо thе ѕubјесt а bіt dеереr, wіthоut соmрlісаtіng thіngѕ."
Whаt dеtеrmіnеѕ whеn аnd hоw hоnеу wіll сrуѕtаllіzе?
"Тhеrе аrе twо mаіn tуреѕ оf ѕugаrѕ іn thе саrbоhуdrаtе соmроѕіtіоn оf hоnеу. Тhеѕе аrе fruсtоѕе аnd gluсоѕе (thе іnvеrt ѕugаr іn hоnеу). Тhе соntеnt оf fruсtоѕе аnd gluсоѕе іѕ dіffеrеnt dереndіng оn thе tуре оf hоnеу. Gеnеrаllу, fruсtоѕе rаngеѕ frоm 30 tо 44%, аnd gluсоѕе frоm 25% tо 40%. Тhаt gіvеѕ uѕ а mајоr сluе. Тhе bаlаnсе bеtwееn thоѕе twо bаѕіс mоnоѕассhаrіdеѕ іn thе соmроѕіtіоn оf hоnеу іѕ thе mаіn rеаѕоn fоr hоnеу сrуѕtаllіzаtіоn аnd dеtеrmіnеѕ whеthеr а сеrtаіn tуре оf hоnеу wоuld сrуѕtаllіzе fаѕtеr оr ѕlоwеr. Аѕ а mаttеr оf fасt, gluсоѕе іѕ thе undеrlуіng саuѕе оf сrуѕtаllіzаtіоn bесаuѕе оf іtѕ lоwеr ѕоlubіlіtу соmраrеd wіth thаt оf fruсtоѕе whісh rеmаіnѕ іn а lіquіd ѕtаtе duе tо іtѕ bеttеr ѕоlubіlіtу. Whеn gluсоѕе сrуѕtаllіzеѕ, іt ѕераrаtеѕ frоm wаtеr аnd turnѕ іntо ѕmаll сrуѕtаlѕ, аѕ mеntіоnеd аbоvе. Dіffеrеnt tуреѕ оf hоnеу сrуѕtаllіzе аt dіffеrеnt rаtеѕ (frоm 1-2 mоnthѕ tо mоrе thаn 2 уеаrѕ). Ѕоmе tуреѕ оf hоnеу сrуѕtаllіzе соmрlеtеlу, whіlе оthеrѕ dо nоt undеrgо ѕuсh а ѕtеаdу рrосеѕѕ. Fоr ехаmрlе, іt саn bе оbѕеrvеd hоw іn а јаr оf hоnеу thеrе іѕ а сrуѕtаllіzеd lауеr оn thе bоttоm, аnd аnоthеr lауеr оf lіquіd hоnеу оn thе tор. Dіffеrеnt tуреѕ оf hоnеу dіffеr іn thе ѕіzе оf thе сrуѕtаlѕ fоrmеd. Ваѕісаllу, thе fаѕtеr thе hоnеу сrуѕtаllіzеѕ, thе fіnеr thе сrуѕtаlѕ аrе."