The fact that honey was already known as a foodstuff in the Stone Age is conveyed by 9000 year old cave paintings depicting "honey hunters". Many petroglyphs in Australia show that the Aborigines collected bush honey since prehistoric times.

Around 3,000 BC, honey was considered the "food of the gods" and the source of immortality in ancient Egypt. A pot of honey was balanced with the value of a donkey !

Already the ancient Greeks appreciated honey, because according to mythology the gods owed their immortality to it. The same applies to the All-Father Odin, widely revered god in Germanic mythology, who is said to have drawn his wisdom and strength from honey.

Hippocrates, probably the most famous physician of antiquity, knew two of the probably most important characteristics: excellent for wound healing and effective for inflammations as well as for fever reduction. Honey water was also used as "doping": This potion improved the performance of the athletes at the ancient Olympic Games !

Modern science : A bit late, but still "in time": Based on years of experience and studies, modern science confirms these statements; if you look at honey purely physico-chemically, it is nothing more than a supersaturated sugar solution: about 80% sugar (fructose and glucose) and about 20% water.

Again briefly to the memory: Beverages the honey contain may not be hot, since the honey loses its welfare characteristics already starting from 40 degrees. Consumer protection organizations and beekeepers recommend expressly not to buy cheap supermarket honey, since behind it hides itself unfortunately mostly import commodity, which was strongly heated up, in order to prevent the crystallization of the sugar.

The biochemist Prof. Dr. Peter Molan from the Honey Research Unit of the University of Waikato in New Zealand, founded in 1995, researched the healing substances. His research results were extremely astonishing: About 60 types of bacteria, including such dangerous ones as Staphylococcus aureus can be defeated with honey !

In addition, bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics can be killed by honey wound dressings; as a result, patients who have suffered soreness are now being treated with honey dressings in numerous hospitals around the world. The scientists assume that the antimicrobial effect of honey is due to certain enzymes.

It is also due to the high sugar content in honey, which deprives the bacteria of vital water. Another ingredient that helps the unwanted microorganisms is hydrogen peroxide, which is also produced by an enzyme. The more than 60 publications, which were published in scientific journals by Prof. Dr. Peter Molan, are now compiled in a review paper.

For example, methicillin-resistant staphylococci, which are an immense problem in many clinics, are already killed at a concentration of only 1% - 4% honey! Even vancomycin-resistant Enterococci (spherical bacteria known as killer bacteria) and the dreaded multi-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa have a bad hand with honey.

Chronically infected skin wounds are often free of pathogens after only a few days of consistent honey treatment. However, honey not only has a disinfecting effect, but also promotes the breakdown of the dead tissue often present in a wound, which in turn inhibits wound healing.

Finally, honey also promotes the growth of fibroblasts, the cells that give the tissue a firm structure. When fibroblasts are activated, the wound closes not only from the edge, but also from the depth. This effect is particularly important in the case of extensive burns. Here honey even beats a standard medical procedure: Compared to burns that were treated with silver sulfodiazine-impregnated gauze, those with honey healed more quickly and there was less excessive scarring.

The bee product has three antibacterial effects: as a concentrated sugar solution, it withdraws the water that is vital for pathogens; with its low pH value, it prevents bacteria from multiplying, and its so-called inhibitors have an additional germicidal effect. These antibiotic properties have been scientifically proven today. Spread directly on the wound and covered with gauze, honey is now even used in hospitals as a wound healing agent.

Of course, the plants visited by the busy bees also contribute significantly to making honey a potent wound healing agent. Honey, which comes from flowers of the Leptospermum plant family found in Australia and New Zealand, such as the tea tree, seems to be a particularly potent killer of bacteria. The Australian company Medihoney has recognized this fact and produces a honey based on Leptospermum plants, which releases constant concentrations of hydrogen peroxide and always contains the same amount of antimicrobially active plant substances.

All these positive characteristics honey shows however only, if it was not heat treated !

Bee nectar contains about 180 accompanying substances ! The most important are the so-called inhibins and inhibitors such as the flavonoid Pinocembrin, a heat-stable antibiotic that inhibits inflammation. Other flavonoids are also being tested as anti-cancer agents.

Another important ingredient is acetylcholine (nitrogen compound), which has a very positive effect on heart activity by reducing the heart rate, dilating narrowed coronary arteries and having a blood pressure lowering and heart protecting effect.

Did you know that for 1000 grams of honey, bees travel a distance equivalent to several times the circumference of the earth? But even after "delivery" to the beehive, the nectar collected is still far from being honey. Until the liquid gold is ready for use, it still travels through many bees' stomachs.

The collecting bee absorbs the nectar of the blossoms and splits it in its honey stomach with endogenous enzymes into fructose and dextrose. When it reaches the hive, it chokes out the nectar and passes it on to other bees. Other worker bees suck the sweet juice several times into the honey stomach, add some saliva and choke it out again until the unripe honey becomes thicker.

Finally, it is further thickened in the honeycomb using special dehumidification and ventilation techniques until it reaches the right degree of maturity with a water content of about 20%.

To produce forest and fir honey, the bees "milk" aphids. These bees feed on the sap of the trees and secrete a sugary liquid: honeydew. The bees absorb this and then process it into fir honey. Furthermore, honey contains various acids, acetylcholine for the nervous system, enzymes, proteins, free amino acids, organic acids, over 300 aromatic substances, colorants, minerals and vitamins.

Honey has an antioxidant effect that counteracts aging and is also considered a "nerve balm". The antioxidants of this wonderful bee product can reduce the risk of disease.

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