“Sugar pie, honey bunch
You know that I love you
I can’t help myself
I love you and nobody else”
Okay, so I wouldn’t say that I only love honey. But it’s dang tasty, y’all! And if you’ve been on The Bourbon Cactus blog for any amount of time, you know that I am a BIG proponent of local, raw honey.
But why local, raw honey you ask?
Well….here’s the skinny on
Why you should only be consuming local, raw honey.
Don’t hassle me, I’m local
First off, let’s define what local honey actually means.
Honey is considered local when it is harvested within 50 miles of where you live. So you don’t have to have a beekeeper in your city to have local honey. (Well, unless your city is huge! Haha!)
And honey is not necessarily local to you if it comes from your state. I know a lot of grocery stores now carry “local” honey that is harvested or produced from that particular state. Make sure you read the label well if you plan on purchasing this.
But as long you get honey that is harvested within a 50-mile radius of your city, you are good to go!
What is raw honey?
Raw honey is honey that goes straight from the honeycomb to your jar – or whatever container it’s in.
You want to make sure the honey you buy DOES NOT say pasteurized or filtered. And you absolutely want to read the label to make sure it is 100% pure honey. Nothing added. (ahem…sugar.)
The processes of pasteurization and filtering honey strips it of the nutritional benefits. And why would we want to do that?
*I will note that you should never feed honey to a child under 1 year of age. Honey can contain spores of bacteria that can cause botulism. For adults and older children, this is no problem, but the spores can colonize in an infant’s digestive tract and produce deadly botulin toxin.
Benefits of local, raw honey
Now to the good part: why you should be consuming local, raw honey.
Honey is excellent for allergy relief.
Due to the bee pollen and propolis contained in honey – and the fact that it’s local – it’s a great defense against seasonal allergies. Plus, raw honey contains anti-inflammatory properties which are also beneficial in subsiding those sinus and allergy symptoms.
Honey is nutritionally good for you.
Yes, you read that right…honey is actually good for you!
Raw honey has a high nutritional value due to the components of minerals, vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants and more. (You can read more about the constituents of raw honey here or here, on the NCBI website. It’s pretty interesting.)
Plus, since honey is a natural sweetener, you avoid all the nasty stuff that is in conventional sugar and artificial sweeteners. And in correct doses, raw honey can even lower glucose levels. Moderation y’all!
Honey is nature’s medicine cabinet.
So I’ve already told you that raw honey is anti-inflammatory, contains powerful antioxidants and other key nutrients, but it is also antimicrobial. When bees synthesize pollen, hydrogen peroxide is produced. This is passed through to the honey.
We all know how useful hydrogen peroxide is at cleaning wounds. The same premise is true for raw honey inside the body making it great at fighting whatever ails ya.
And if you want to, you could even use raw honey topically on burns, dermatitis, ulcers, etc.. This same article from Integrated Medical Insights explains how the anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties of raw honey make it good for wound healing.
I don’t know about you, but I would much rather be putting foods in my body that help it rather than hurt it. So for me and my family, consuming local, raw honey is a no-brainer. And knowing what is going into my body and where it’s coming from is important to me. Plus I love supporting the economy by purchasing from my local peeps.
Do you use local, raw honey in your home? How do you use it; as a sweetener, medicinally, what? I’d love to know!