For many of us, honey is a must-have staple in our everyday lives and our kitchens. But how much thought have you really given to the honey you buy and where it comes from? Keep reading to learn more about why we think you should reconsider next time to add honey to your grocery list!
Honey has long been recognized as food with natural health benefits and a natural alternative to processed sugars and sweeteners. For many of us, honey is the perfect all-natural fix for our sweet tooth, but we believe it goes beyond that. There is actually evidence to suggest that honey can have an anti-inflammatory response in our bodies and can even reduce the progression of various diseases. In fact, according to a study done in 2022 (Gheldorf and Engeseth), honey has similar antioxidant properties as many fruits when measured “by the absorbance capacity of oxygen radicals.” Pretty cool right?
This research highlights what our team already knew to be true: honey is more than just a sweet treat, and it can impact our overall immunity and wellness.
At African Bronze Honey, our mission is to bring the natural disease-fighting powers of honey back to the table. And we’re pretty good at it, if we do say so ourselves. Contrary to more commercially sourced and agriculturally harvested jars of honey, our wild forest honey is a return to the powerful, natural benefits of wild honey grown in the tropical forests of Africa.
Keep reading for more information on the incredible health benefits of our African Bronze Wild Forest Honey and how our honey compares to the not-so-natural alternatives you might find in the grocery store.
The Power of Antioxidants
When understanding the health benefits of honey, we need to chat about the power of antioxidants in the body. Antioxidants are made up of compounds called phenolic acids. Phenolic acids are readily absorbed through the intestinal tract and enter the body’s system to promote the destruction of free radicals in the body. What are free radicals you might ask? Free radicals is an umbrella term given to substances and compounds in the body that have negative effects on the body cells. Long story short, they’re pretty nasty things that can make us sick and unhealthy. For most people, a diet high in antioxidants can help to reduce these free radicals in the body and can repair the damage to the body's cells.
According to a study done by the Technology Access Centre in Bio-Innovation in Ottawa, wild forest honey was proven to have 3-4x stronger antioxidant activities than honey you might find from big suppliers in the grocery store. Darker, wild forest honey contains more antioxidants and is overall better for human health than manufactured honey. That’s where we come in.
In this study, researchers definitively concluded that African Bronze Traditional Honey (which is the same as our Honeydew Forest Honey) contains 5-times more phenolics than other commercially available brands in Canada. That’s pretty impressive!
In this study, a total of nine different phenolic compounds were present in wild forest honey. Why does that matter to us? It means that our wild honey packs a greater disease-fighting punch, that’s why!
The Role of Microbials
For decades, honey has been integrated into traditional medicines, home remedies and used for alternative, non-traditional uses. Turns out, as research is only beginning to show us, past healers might have been on to something when it came to alternative uses for honey around the house. This is largely due to honey’s antimicrobial properties.
Microbial is a generalized term given to microbes or microorganisms. These microbes are living organisms that are found in our food, in our bodies and even on our skin. Many microorganisms play a vital role in the overall health of our bodies, while some can have negative impacts, such as getting us sick or causing an infection.
That’s where honey joins the party…
Studies have shown that when applied to the skin, honey has been shown to heal wounds, burns and inflammation due to its antimicrobial properties (Oryan et al., 2016). These antimicrobial properties help to fight infection by fighting the microorganisms that can cause these infections. How? Honey is composed primarily of water, glucose and fructose. In honey, these ingredients are found in their purest form, showing wild forest honey to have higher microbial properties compared to agricultural honey. However, its difficult to know the true differences in antimicrobial properties due to complex reactions between the chemicals in honey.
What Are Prebiotics? Probiotics' Lesser-known Cousin!
Another health benefit of wild forest honey is the presence of prebiotics and their role in the biome of the human gut and the functioning of the digestive system. Prebiotics are compounds found naturally occurring in foods that help to foster the growth of good microorganisms in the body. Prebiotics act as food for the good bacteria in the human digestive system.
Prebiotics are different from the more commonly known compounds called probiotics. While prebiotics act as food for the naturally occurring microorganisms in the human digestive tract, probiotics are foods or supplements that contain the live organisms used to keep the gut healthy (called microflora). Both prebiotics and probiotics are critical to the overall health of the human body and the adequate absorption of vitamins and nutrients.
The most commonly found prebiotic in honey is a compound called oligosaccharides. These oligosaccharides are digested by the microflora in the gut microbiome and alter the microbial balance for the better (Roberfroid, 2022). A diet high in prebiotics can have a range of health benefits, such as the “alleviation of constipation, improvement of mineral absorption, regulation of lipids, glucose and insulin levels, decrease in risk of colon cancer, prevention of neurotoxin buildup, and beneficial effects on the immune system” (Swennen et al., 2006). We love science!
Our natural, wild-forested honey is sourced from the remote tropical forests of Zambia and Tanzania. With a commitment to being ethically sourced, our honey is an integral part of sustainable and regenerative beekeeping practices that help to preserve African forests. Our work has helped to support 10,000 African beekeepers and their communities, and fight climate change. With a full-flavoured taste, African Bronze Honey is pesticide-free, GMO-free, certified 100% organic, and downright good for you!To shop our full range of African Bronze Honey products, visit africanbronzehoney.com.