A “Vegan” is a person who does not eat any food derived from animals and who typically does not use other animal products. Simply put, they do not use or eat anything that is a byproduct of an animal, regardless what it is. Honey is one of these things that vegans claim to not take part in because if goes against their lifestyle.
I have done a lot of research and thinking about honey, and I have come to the conclusion that I am not sold on this idea. I don’t feel that it is wrong to consume bee’s honey, bee’s pollen or use bee’s wax.
In nature there are checks and balances. One species benefits from the other, and in turn they get something back. Large fish will swim great lengths to corral reefs to allow smaller fish to feast on parasites. The smaller fish get a free meal and the larger one is free of parasites.
Another example are plants produce a wealth of food like berries, fruits and vegetables that are eaten by animals. The same holds true with bees, we provide houses, water, protection and in return they provide pollination of our plants, food for predators like birds. They over produce honey, pollen and wax. Responsible bee farmers know to take just enough from the colonies as not to impact the bees. Most bee farmers do not even wear bee suits when collecting honey because the bees know that they are not in danger so they do not attack.
The benefits far out weigh the disadvantages of not consuming raw honey. I highly recommend buying from local bee farmers. Let’s walk through the Pros & Cons of honey.
Here are some Cons:
- Research has not confirmed that raw honey has more benefits than pasteurized honey, but some suggest that pasteurizing (Pure) honey diminished the beneficial elements. Pasteurized honey may go by a number of other names like Clover, or Organic, to name a few.
- As long as a person is not allergic to bee pollen, raw honey is generally safe to use.
- Synthetic honey is the 3rd most faked food in the world and does not have the same benefits as real honey. Fake honey can be made a lot faster than the time it takes for real honey.
Here are some Pros:
- Raw honey has been used for traditional medicine for thousands of years
- Contains antioxidants
- Wound-healing effects
- Antibacterial actions
- Anti-inflammatory effects
- Diarrhea treatment
- Relieving coughs
- Protects the brain
- Raw honey contains the following nutrition:
- Niacin – Good for lowering LDL & increasing HDL Cholesterol, boosts brain & skin functions, may reduce symptoms of arthritis, treat type 1 diabetes, and prevent heart disease.
- Riboflavin – Needed for normal cell growth and function. May slow aging, memory loss, Alzheimer disease, high blood pressure, liver disease, and sickle cell anemia to name a few.
- Pantothenic acid – Also known as B5, one of eight B vitamins that convert protein, carbohydrates, and fats you eat into energy. B vitamins are also needed for healthy skin, hair and eyes, proper functioning of the nervous system and liver, healthy digestive tract, making red blood cells as well as making sex and stress related hormones.
- Calcium – Used to maintain healthy and strong bones, heart, muscles and nerves.
- Magnesium – Important for regulating muscle and nerve functions, blood sugar levels and blood pressure, as well as making proteins, bone and DNA.
- Manganese – Activates many enzymes in the metabolism and plays a key role in a variety of chemical processes in your body. Aids with proteins and amino acid digestion and utilization, along with the metabolism of cholesterol and carbohydrates.
- Potassium – One of the most important minerals in the body. Regulates fluid balance, muscle contractions and nerve signals. Helps reduce blood pressure and water retention, protects against strokes as well as preventing osteoporosis and kidney stones.
- Phosphorous – The function is in the formation of bones and teeth. It is a key role in how the body uses carbohydrates and fats. It is also needed for the body to make proteins for growth, maintenance and repairing cells and tissue.
- Zinc – Key for your immune system and metabolism functions. It’s important for wound healing and your sense of taste and smell.
- Some research suggests that honey may offer a protective effect against diabetes and may improve cholesterol levels.
Some of the resources I used:
- Burker.com – They have a lot on honey and the increasing fraud.
- Medical News today
- The bittersweet truth about honey’s health benefits
- Healthline – Is honey good for you, of bad?
- Nourish by WebMD – Honey: Are there health benefits?
- Livestron.com – Good and bad effects from eating honey
- How to detect fake honey – Increasingly getting harder and hard to detect fake honey.