10 Things You NEVER Knew about Honey Bees + Their Honey
Honey bees are amazing creatures. While most of you know the basics, I want to share with you some fun unique facts that you may not know about bees and their honey.
1. Bees travel a maximum of 15 kms from their hive
This is how bee farmers localize their honey flavours. Since there is a limited range of a bees, where they are located will control what they pollinate. If they primarily pollinate cranberries, this will result in cranberry flavoured honey. Local bee farmers often rent their hives to blueberry farmers, cranberry farmers and so forth. This benefits the berry farmers in having their crops pollinated and it benefits the bee farmers by creating their localized signature flavours.
2. A male honey bee’s only purpose in life is to impregnate the queen.
This is extended by the fact that the male bee will die after sex because his testicles explode on release. It is so important to reproduce for the survival of the hive that the queen can mate up to 150 times in a single day.
3. Science, to this day, still does not know how a hive chooses the larva that will turn into the next queen.
All animal kingdoms, including humans, have a method to how they choose a leader. Despite observations and study, scientists have not been able to determine what qualifications a hive uses to decide their next queen.
4. Royal Jelly is AMAZING
Royal jelly is a secretion from the honey bees. It is used in the nutrition of larvae as well as the queen. With continuing research, royal jelly is shown to have medicinal benefits towards helping reduce the negative impact of diabetes, asthma and digestive tract cancers. 10 mgs of royal jelly will give you your daily need of: vitamin a, all b vitamins, vitamin c, vitamin k, iron, magnesium, calcium, and zinc. Royal jelly is really hard to get as it can’t be kept out of a freezer for longer than 4 hours. The microbes and parasites grow so quickly because it is so nutrient dense, that it can become poisonous if not consumed in a short period of time.
5. Bee Hives are being used in a holistic medicinal technique
Research is still being done on this technique, but it is being used to assist people with asthma. How it works: a tube is placed directly into the hive, and the person uses it to suck air directly from inside the hive. The notion being that the hive air carries properties of the honey and jelly that can soothe allergen irritants in your system that cause asthma.
6. Helps you Sober Up
Many people go for bread, or a heavy carbohydrate with the idea of absorbing the alcohol in your body. Honey goes up to you bloodstream within the first 5-10 minutes, faster than most carbohydrates, and works the same in absorbing the alcohol.
7. Is Antibacterial & Antiviral
Honey is one of the oldest known antibiotics. It was often used by Ancient Egyptians as a natural antibiotic and skin protectant. Furthermore, honey has antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. It has been used as a natural method for wound healing, preventing tooth decay, soothing sore throats and correcting digestive issues.
8. Never Expires
Expiry dates on honey packages relate to the packaging and not the honey itself. You can eat honey found in an Ancient Egyptian tomb and it would be completely healthy for you. Honey bees are ancient creatures and that can be proven by found fossilized honey from 130 million years ago.
9. You Absorb 100% of Honey’s Nutrients
Honey it is a pure glucose that has already been pre digested by the honey bees. This makes it ready to go directly into your system versus the average of only 10-15% of the nutrients of most foods.
10. The Darker the Better
Darker honey means it carries more health benefits. This is because it carries thicker pollen proteins meaning it is more nutrient dense.
These facts just scratch the surface about the value and benefits of honey bees and the honey they produce. More and more research comes out every day and I look forward to learning more. Please share in the comments below facts that you have learned about honey! Thanks for reading.
Primary source: local bee farmer Mackenzie Nielsen, partner to Caspian Apiaries