Golden Spike Honey "White Paper"

Raw Honey Through the Ages

 

Actually, All Honey was pretty much sold, traded, stored and eaten as raw honey up until the late 1800's. That is to say that the honey was not heated to the required 161 degrees for pasteurization until some time after Mr Pasteur invented the process for milk. Since that time, it has been more and more the common practice to heat and pressure filter honey for several reasons, among them:

  1. Shelf life
  2. Retard crystallization
  3. Remove spores harmful to infants (see this link)
  4. Facilitate blending of several honey sources

It Is Now common knowledge that heating of honey above 120 degrees destroys much of the beneficial properties of honey. The caution here is that raw honey should never be feed to infants under the age of 18 months because of the possibility that it may include botulinum endospores which can cause infant botulism. These same spores can also be found clinging to that sweet, raw carrot you just plucked from the garden, wiped on your shirt tail and joyously devoured. More mature digestive systems (over the age of 18 months) can handle and dispose of these spores easily. Even this information is cautionary as the problematic spores are not often present. We recommend avoiding the potential, and serious illness by using good common sense with raw honey and not including it in an infantís diet. For most of the rest of us, however, raw honey should be and is a sought after and treasured part of a healthy lifestyle, as it has been for millennia!

The Following Historical facts are easily confirmed and I will not include references here in an effort to let this information flow uninterrupted. While it is true that the straw honey bee skep is the symbol of Utah, it is not the first time such symbols have been attached to industrious populations. Napoleon used the bee as a symbol of his empire after his coronation in 1804. It stood for industry, efficiency and productivity. Some other interesting facts are:

  • Man has been collecting honey from the honeybee for at least 9,000 years.
  • Honey is one of the oldest foods in existence. It was found in the tomb of King Tut and was still edible since honey never spoils.
  • Cave paintings that have been found in Spain from 7,000 BC are the earliest records of beekeeping.
  • Romans used honey, instead of gold, to pay their taxes.
  • To the ancients, honey was a source of health, a sign of purity and a symbol of strength and virility.
  • European settlers introduced honeybees to North America during the 1600ís.
  • The Native Americans called them the "White Manís Flies."

 

Here Are Some more recent facts about and attributes of honey:

  • Raw honey has inherent antimicrobial properties that discourage the growth or persistence of many microorganisms.
  • No vegetative forms of disease-causing bacterial spores have been found in honey.
  • In addition to antioxidants, honey contains the vitamins B6, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin and pantothenic acid.
  • Honey is fat free, cholesterol free and sodium free!
  • Generally, darker honeys have stronger antioxidant potential. The antioxidants identified thus far in honey are pinocembrin, pinobanksin, chrysin and galagin. Pinocembrin is unique to honey and found in the highest amount relative to the others. Ascorbic acid (vitamin C), catalase and selenium are also present.
  • Honey contains the minerals calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, sodium and zinc.
  • Honey is high in carbohydrates and is therefore a great energy source.
  • Honey is the only food that includes all the substances necessary to sustain life, including water.
  • Honey has the ability to attract and absorb moisture, which makes it remarkably soothing for minor burns and helps to prevent scarring. (NEVER butter!!)
  • Honey is antimicrobial due to itís high sugar content, low pH and the presence of organic acids (Use it to treat cuts, scrapes and burns as well as to prevent scarring!)
  • Honey is used as a hair and facial treatment due to the fact that it attracts and retains moisture.
  • Using honey in your baked goods will keep them moist for a longer period of time.
  • Honey never goes "bad". It is slightly acidic and, therefore, not conducive for bacterial growth.
  • Honey is the only food produced by insects that is eaten by man!
  • Raw honey is good and it is good for you - it belongs in your medicine cabinet as well as your cupboard!

 

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