We are excited to bring to you our brand-new range of Beetanicals 100% Raw Australian Honey! Our premium, single-line varietals include Red Gum, Blue Gum, Yellow Box and Stringy Bark honeys are produced by our very own bees – the same ones that bring you the key ingredients in our skin balms! So, what is “raw” honey, and does it have certain health benefits?
Honey is identified as “raw” when it has not been heated past the pasteurisation temperature (approximately 40 degrees Celsius), whereby the naturally-occurring enzymes are deactivated, and the associated benefits lost. Raw honey may also contain beeswax, propolis and bee pollen – all of which have additional benefits of their own!
A study comparing raw and processed honeys from the same flora source found higher antioxidant levels in the raw types. Why is this important? Antioxidants help to protect our body’s cells and tissues against oxidative damage, which contributes to a number of chronic diseases and even premature aging!
Enzymes in raw honey could be partly responsible for its higher antioxidant content. Catalase is one such antioxidant enzyme, and is accompanied by others including glucose oxidase and diastase. Glucose oxidase helps to produce hydrogen peroxide – a protective antibacterial element. The amount of hydrogen peroxide found in raw honey is not enough to be a stand-alone treatment for bacterial infections, however it can impair bacterial growth. If you have recently identified an intestinal bacterial overgrowth or dysbiosis, you may benefit from swapping out other sweet spreads for raw honey. Diastase is another antioxidant enzyme that breaks down starches. One particular study found that stimulating diastase activity was linked to stronger antifungal activity against candida – a common fungus that can cause digestive and other issues in cases of overgrowth. How was the diastase stimulated you ask? By adding starchy carbohydrates such as those found in bread. Did someone say honey on toast?!
Our honeys come in a range of single-line varietals – an advantage in itself – offering four unique flavours and allowing for a variety of tastes, while keeping us away from highly-processed and sugary spreads. With that said, certain honeys do offer specific benefits.
Stringybark honey is one of the darker honeys and is great if you’re wanting an antioxidant boost. In a study where 19 different samples of honey from 14 different flora sources were tested, it proved that darker honeys boasted higher antioxidant contents. In fact, the darkest honey that was tested had 20 times the antioxidant power of the lightest type!
On a different note, Yellow Box, Red Gum and Stringybark honey are each classified as low-GI, meaning they have a less dramatic effect on your blood sugar levels and offer sustained energy over a longer period of time. Blue Gum is a eucalyptus honey just like its cousin Red Gum so, while it has not been tested, it is likely to hold a similar low-GI status. Of all the honey varietals tested, Yellow Box was proven to be the lowest-GI honey with a rating of 40, while Stringybark and Red Gum sit at 47 and 51 respectively. To put this into context, jellybeans have a GI of 80, and cornflakes are no better! Looking for a low-GI breakfast choice? Try sourdough toast (57) or toasted muesli (43) with one of these honey varietals.
So yes, you can enjoy your raw honey without the guilt!
100% raw honey is a great substitute for enzyme-inactive and antioxidant-poor sweet ingredients commonly found in household pantries. The key things to remember is to not give it to a child under 12 months of age. Bon appetite!