Here's a collection of some selected questions related to Raw Food Diet and Honey that our Benefits of Honey readers have raised via the Just Ask Page. Check out if these answer your most pressing question.
Question: I'm told that raw honey is the same as pure honey. Is it true?
Reply: "Raw" and "pure" are two different concepts. Raw honey is unpasteurized honey, totally unheated, whereas pure honey basically refers to 100% unadulterated. So it is possible to have pure but pasteurized honey, as well as raw but impure honey. Read more to understand these honey terms: Frequently Asked Information About Honey
Question: I would like to know, what is the percentage % of enzymes found in the raw honey?
Reply: The enzymes present in honey have been identified (e.g glucose oxidase, amylase, etc) but not isolated for quantification or measurement. The amount of enzymes is known to be small, but they spin off powerful effects.
Question: I have difficulties finding raw honey in my area, if I buy online, can I still have the same health benefits?
Reply: Raw honey is best, but if you can't find raw honey in your area, online honey or commercial honey is still more superior than highly refined, processed sugar, corn syrup or artificial sweeteners. My views on commercial honey in: Which Honey to Buy?
Question: I have never bought raw honey before. How can I use raw honey? Is processed honey better?
Reply: Raw honey is important for medical treatments such as application to wounds, skin troubles, infection, facials, etc. For cooking, most people are not too particular about using only raw honey because of the negative effects of heat on the live enzymes in raw honey. Ref: What's so Special about Raw Honey?
Question: We've recently started taking raw honey and organic apple cider vinegar in a large mug of green tea for the various benefits. I use tea because raw honey doesn't dissolve easily in cold water. Am I undermining the benefits of the honey by putting it into a hot liquid?
Reply: Any heating will reduce the aroma and flavour of honey, and never heat honey above 50 degree C. as it will damage its food value. Try just slightly warm water (about 40 degree C.) to dissolve the honey. An article which you might find useful: Raw Honey
Question: I use honey all the time. Can it be bought in a crystallised form, so that I can use it in baking? Also, please compare raw honey's benefits to the use of "Fructose", the white granulated product that one buys from health food stores.
Reply: Yes, honey can certainly be bought in crystallised form, in fact it's called cream honey.
Read about cream honey and honey crystallisation in:
We need to be careful about "Fructose health products" such as pure crystallized fructose and high fructose syrups (HFS). Fructose is often equated to fruit sugar; hence it's often perceived and touted by many health products company as natural sugars. But fructose is not made from fruit, it's a commercial, refined sugar which started to exist only in the recent decades and according to nutritionists our body has a difficult time converting this high fructose "sugar". Products from the nature will tend to win when compared with artificially made ones, and that's the reason why raw food diet is becoming so popular these days.
You may want to read: Natural Sweetener
Question: How can i use honey to improve my voice in singing
Reply: Many people find drinking honey mixed in either warm water or tea (not hot or cold please) helps in calming and soothing the throat. This remedy is commonly used by singers. Read: Health Benefits of Honey
Question: In the vinegar and honey mix, does it matter if hot or cold water is used? I have seen chilled water recommended in several places, but I prefer a hot drink. Do I lose anything with the piping hot mix?
Reply: Many people also take this mixture in its warm version. But never heat honey above 50C as it will damage its food value. Slightly warm water (about 40 degree C.) is okay, but not piping hot. Two articles which you might find useful:
Question: Should I worry that my honey may have originated from bees that polinate crops that also have pesticides? Will the chemical residue from those pesticides make it from the bees to my honey when I eat it?
Reply: Where commercial crops are concerned, the use of pesticides are legally kept at a safe level, hence most people are still consuming "inorganic foods" (as opposed to expensive "organic" foods). All food supply are assumed to have been tested by various government departments before they reach your plate. Also, beekeepers operating apiaries in areas where pesticides take steps to protect their bees from poisoning. However, actually if you seriously think about it, all honey can in a way be argued as "organic", as it's a product of the bee's digestive track, the stuff they use to feed their larvae.
You may be interested to read this:
When honey is labelled as organic: What is Organic Honey?
Why people have equated "organic" to "healthy" and claim there is a taste difference between organic and regular, which I personally have not quite figured out: Why Some Prefer Organic Food
Question: I have been buying non-filtered honey at the local farmers market. It comes in reused jelly-type jars. I noticed that some of the honey is darker than others, some as dark as molasses. This happens even in the honey with the comb included. What does this mean? Is clear honey better?
Reply: Honeys vary in colour depending on their varieties; hence whether it's darker or lighter may not always be an indicator of its quality. Also crystallisation lightens the colour of honey. I do not have a concrete answer to how clear honey should be, clear "commercial" honey has been heated and thoroughly filtered so that it looks cleaner and more appealing on the shelf, however its vitamins and minerals are partially destroyed during heating. Raw food diet involving pure raw honey (rare nowadays) is totally unheated and hence more nutritious. However it's unfiltered and characterised by textured crystals looks cloudy and contains particles and flecks of bee pollen, and even bee fragments, which could be in a way everyone would consider as undesirable. Read: Honey Storage .
Question: Is honey good for cleansing fatty liver?
Reply: Yes, honey is used as a home remedy to remove excessive fats around the liver."Mix one teaspoon of raw honey (unheated) with the juice of two teaspoons of lime or lemon juice in a glass of room temperature or lukewarm water (not boiling water!). Take this remedy once in the morning on a empty stomach."
Question: Can honey be frozen until you are ready to use it?
Reply: It's okay to freeze honey which you will not be using for months, without harming it. To avoid the hassle of defrosting, I would recommend storing honey in an air tight container in dry, cool place. (Read: Honey Storage Tips )