This article on propolis, bee pollen and honey is part of a new series on alternative medicines and remedies that are used as a treatment or as a preventive measure against illness, to boost the immune system or as a complementary medicine. These alternative medicines are available in Europe but are also available in most countries and probably where you live too. There will be links on where to buy these products at the end of the article. For most of these links, I have no commercial ties to these soft medicines and receive no benefit from my suggestions. As with any articles I write, my disclaimer: please do not accept my health advice as a substitute for seeking medical treatment.
Allergy caution on using bee products: if you have a known allergy to bees sting venom or severe allergy to plant pollen , please use bee propolis and bee pollen with caution.
What’s The Buzz Around Using Bee Propolis, Bee Pollen and Honey?
Bees are in danger of disappearing. In the last 10 years in the United States and Europe, the bee population has declined, on average, 30 percent. And with one in every three bites of our food linked to pollinators, like bees, this fragile ecosystem is in real danger of altering our future food supply.
Not only do we as humans depending greatly on the work of bees to pollinate our plants, but the by-products of a bee’s work is also another treasure that is in danger of disappearing.
Bees produce three treasures with their hard work: propolis, bee pollen and honey. Honey is well-known as a sweetener, but it used for even more than a mouth pleaser. Like propolis and bee pollen, honey has tremendous capacity, especially in its raw form to support a healthy immune system or to boost health.
Health Benefits of Propolis
Propolis is a resinous mixture that honey bees collect from tree buds, sap flows, or other botanical sources. It is used as a sealant for unwanted open spaces in the hive. (source here)
My first experience with propolis was using to help my (then) young daughter recover from her ear infection. The local pharmacy suggested this soft medicine that would help boost her immune system so that she wouldn’t get repeated ear infections through the winter.
The pharmacist recommended a propolis syrup used just for children. The quantity of raw propolis was light in the syrup, but the three-week therapy with propolis syrup seemed to help my daughter stay healthy. In fact, propolis has a long history for being used for its medicinal properties. Even with the strict medical protocols in the scientific world, propolis has been labeled “possible effective” as working against certain herpes viruses that you find in genital herpes and cold sores. Read more here from Medline Plus.
In adults without a history of bee allergies, I would recommend a more concentrated form of propolis and not a syrup to get the most immune boosting benefits. Using propolis over several weeks in the month before cold and flu season may bring its highest health benefits.
For us here in France, I regularly buy propolis to use during the month of November to help strengthen my family’s immune system against colds and flu.
Pictures of bees and propolis
Health Benefits of Bee Pollen
“Bee pollen is the food of the young bee and it is approximately 40% protein. It is considered one of nature’s most completely nourishing foods. It contains nearly all nutrients required by humans. About half of its protein is in the form of free amino acids that are ready to be sued directly by the body. Such highly assimilable protein can contribute significantly to one’s protein needs.” (source here)
Bee pollen is one of the world’s most natural super foods. Bee pollen has ready to use free amino acids that the human body can absorb quickly and is a key to supplementing a variety of health issues. The unique and fascinating fact about bee pollen is that it cannot be replicated in a laboratory. (Hmmm, this can only mean there are components of bee pollen that are unknown, even to the most advanced machines).
I have personally used bee pollen, extracted and sold from an organic bee farm near our home. Bee pollen is powerful complementary medicine. My experience has been marked by an immediate up lift in energy levels, even at the point where it has been too much and the pollen made me feel shaky, for a short time after taking the small teaspoon of bee pollen.
I really believe that bee pollen can help boost your immune system, vitality, help with long-term fatigue, blood flow and digestion. I have not used bee pollen with my children because of the strong effects I have felt for myself. I did not feel comfortable using bee pollen on their (much) younger physical systems. (Do you have experience using bee pollen for yourself or children? Would love to know your story).
Here is a picture of bee pollen and a link to Amazon where you can buy bee pollen online. Use caution with bee pollen for those with a history of allergies to plant pollen.
Finally, the last bee product we use without hesitation is honey, the gold of gods, a by-product of our precious bees. I cannot imagine a world where honey didn’t exist. Could you? Raw honey is the best form for maximum health benefits, and honey should never be heated because it loses its enzymatic properties and health benefits with heat. We use year-round a honey manufactured in New Zealand called Manuka honey. (Just used honey this morning for my daughter who woke up with a light cold and cough). Manuka honey has no side effects, and with so much personal experience using this honey with my family, I can truly say that it has medicinal properties in our household. Here is a popular article published on Manuka Honey Cures.
Any raw honey has benefits, so keep a jar in your medicine cabinet for those spot health treatments against cold, sore throat or stomach ache.
Here is a link to the Manuka Honey we buy (note that the Manuka honey should be labeled to have an active number above 10+)
Call of action on using bee products for health and immune support
With our bee population in America and Europe experiencing colony collapse disorder, today more than ever, we need to support beekeepers and small bee companies who practice ethical treatment of bees.
Bees produce powerful health products that can be a complementary support to strengthen our health and immune system. I recommend using propolis, bee pollen and raw honey, used in caution with those having allergies to bees bought from local beekeepers or organic bee farms.
I have not included bee royal jelly in this article because I have never used it. However, royal jelly seems to be useful for easing fatigue in those with fibromyaglia. This direct from the mouth of a friend and my online research in fibromyaglia forums. Royal jelly may also be a good support for Lupus and other auto-immune disorders. First check with your doctor before using any bee products to treat chronic illness.
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