Show Me the Honey
Had John Wayne been a beekeeper instead of a gunslinger, he might have sauntered into the town saloon and declared, “I take my honey raw and local.” Most beekeepers would rally to him in agreement.
There’s no fancy name for people who hang out with bees. They’re just called beekeepers and they can be a bit cultish. At certain time of the year, my honey-loving friends huddle on the Internet, sending cryptic notes to each other concerning activity within their hives.
“The bees are swarming” they whisper among themselves like members of the French Underground, passing on a secret message.
“The Hum of the Bee is the Voice of the Garden”
All of this is just a playful front, because the beekeepers I know are ordinary people, who are a bit more health and ecologically conscious than most.
In pursuit of their hobby, they’re willing to dress up in funny little outfits and play with insects. No harm there.
The Busy Bee
Beekeepers reward your friendship with a Mason jar of honey from time to time, which is very sweet of them (pun intended). Most are willing to spend time acquainting you with the benefits of raw, local honey.
Now, I understand the local part—honey made from nearby plants that cause allergies can help “inoculate” the sufferer if consumed a few months before the ailment kicks in.
Without Honey Life Wouldn’t Be Sweet
But why raw? I could explain that it has 18 amino acids and powerful antioxidants, but most of you would wander off to another site before I could finish. Advocates of the unheated (unprocessed) nectar claim the goodies are left intact.
Even so, WebMd says that “raw honey is not superior to processed honey in nutrition or health benefits. Researchers found that processing does not affect honey’s nutritional value or antioxidant levels.” Apparently, there’s some disagreement among honey enthusiasts.
An Ambrosial Gift
Proponents claim that a couple of spoons a day of raw honey can increase athletic performance, improve sleep and relaxation, reduce allergies, heal small cuts and scrapes, treat sore throats, indigestion, dry skin and, even, reverse hair loss and increase sperm count. (No mention of warts or gout.)
What’s more, it’s cheap, sweet, and cholesterol-free. No wonder the early Egyptians considered honey the “nectar of the gods.”
The Real Stinger
Einstein made a profound observation about the honey bee: “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.”
Bee Good; Bee Kind; Be Healthy
The writer of Proverbs had a few words to say about the nectar: “Kind words are like honey, sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.”