August 19, 2016

Raw Honey

Honey-72Many Chinese families take a mixture of raw honey with hot water during breakfast. They believe that honey can prevent various kinds of disease from breaking out. There are also other people who like to have honey with bread. What really is raw honey? It is a thick golden liquid produced by industrious bees, using the nectar collected from nearly two million of flowers from very far places. To make a pound of honey, they have to travel such a big distance tirelessly. But how do bees make honey? Bees using their long tube-shaped tongues to extract the juice from the flowers and when returning to the hive, passed the nectar to other bees by regurgitating the liquid into other bees’ mouths. This regurgitation process repeated until the partial digested nectar are finally deposited into the honeycombs. Bees set to work by fanning the honeycombs with their wings in an effort to speed up the process of evaporation. When most of the nectar have evaporated from the honeycombs, the bees have sealed the combs with a secretion from their abdomens. They eventually hardened into wax, and thus the honey can be stored indefinitely.
The oldest bee fossil was discovered in Northern Myanmar dating back from 35 million to 45 million years ago. It was preserved in a piece of amber found in a mine, at a time when bees and warps split into two different linkages .The fossilized insect appeared to have features both common to the bee and wasp, but was considered to be more bee than wasp. The fact that an ancestor of an important modern pollinator existed could have helped scientists to explain the rapid expansion of floral diversity in the early period to mid-Cretaceous period.
In ancient time, honey had fructose, glucose and water, sugar as well as enzyme, minerals, vitamins and amino acids in its composition. People had believed that honey contained medicinal qualities. This being so, people highly value honey. Egyptians used honey in religious rites and ceremonials and even used for preservation of corpses of pharaohs called [mummy] dating back to 5,000 years. Roman law declared that bees were the property of the man who had placed the hive there, not the person who owned the land. In the Muslim religion, Mohammad had said “Honey is the remedy for every illness and the Koran is the remedy for all the illness of the mind”. Therefore, I recommend to you both remedies the “Koran and Honey “. Among ancient civilization, honey was regarded more as medicine rather than food. In fact, as sugar become available in the sixteenth century, honey was the world’s principal sweetener. Honey’s colour, taste, aroma and texture vary greatly depending on the types of flowers a bee frequents; for example, it has differed greatly from bees that frequented a lavender field.
Myanmar is going to export about 3500 tons of raw honey in the near future. The honey season in Myanmar is from September to May. In 2014-15, a total of 3551 tons was exported but 2013-14 witnessed and export of 2490 tons honey only. Export has increased since 2005. All these export are handled by 13-Myanmar companies which have owned about 120,000 hives in the country.
The division of labor can be learned from the honey bees   because of their abilities to live in a colony with their sisters and queen. This type of social behavior is called eusociality. Eusociality exists in many other insects. Ants, bumble bees, paper wasp and termites are all examples of eusocial insects that live together in a colony comprising workers and queen. Within eusocial colonies there exist division of labor between multiple caste of workers. For instance, in honey bees there are two types of workers: nurse bees and forager bees. Honey bee division of labor is also age-dependent, where the youngest bees become nurses and the oldest bees become foragers, A worker bee will dedicate her entire life to the welfare of the hive. As soon as a honey bee emerges as an adult, her main duty is to clean the hive, feed the brood [larvae], receive food from foragers and build honeycombs.
Once a nurse bee is about 2 weeks old, she will switch tasks and begin to guard the colony entrance and clean out the deaths. When they are about 3 weeks old, they become foragers and begin to go out of the hive in search of pollen, nectar and water. Foragers recruit other foragers and go to suitable flowers patches by performing waggle dances. At the end of their life cycle, forager bees are about 5 to 7 weeks old.
As mentioned before, honey bee workers dedicate their lives to the hive and make sure that their queen is well protected as she is the one that produced the workers. Without the queen, a honey bee colony cannot survive on its own. The queen will lay thousands of eggs and can live for up to 3 to 5 years but will mate only once. She is essential to the colony and honey bee workers will sacrifice their lives to protect her.
Honey has been valued for millennia since time immemorial. Its sweet taste is considered a gift from the God. It has a wide range of spiritual, cosmetic and medicinal uses. Today raw honey is still popular, because of its many nutritional values as it includes high vitamin contents. Raw honey is nutritionally superior to processed honey because processing significantly reduced the material content. The followings are the main vitamin contents in raw honey:
Vitamin C. Raw honey is rich in vitamin C. Medicinal experts believe Vitamin C to be one of the most effective vitamin available  to humans. It boosts  up the immune system, helping to protect the body from infection and disease. Vitamin C is also good for skin and can be topically absorbed .It means that raw honey can be smoothed onto the skin as a face cleaner and can also ease topical system such as burns, rashes and dry skin.
Vitamin B6. Raw honey also has a high Vitamin B 6 content. This vitamin is important to human body and it is involved in chemical reaction that takes place each minute. Vitamin B 6 is actually of three different vitamins. Pyidoxamine , Pridoxel and Pyidoxine. This combination works in tandem with enzymes within the body to ensure that your body’s metabolism is functioning properly.
Vitamin B3. Vitamin B 3 or Niacin is also found in raw honey. Niacin can help reduce levels of bad cholesterol or LDL (low density of lipoprotein), and also increase levels of beneficial cholesterol or HDL (high density of lipoprotein).
Vitamin B2.  Raw honey contains Vitamin B 2, also known as riboflavin. Riboflavin is a water soluble vitamin that helps to fuel the body’s energy by converting carbohydrates into sugar, it also helps with the breakdown of fats and amino-acids.
Vitamin B1. Vitamin B 1 or thiamin is also present in raw honey. Thiamin helps breakdown carbohydrate to fuel the body. It also neutralizes free radical which can be compromise the immune system and speed up the aging process.
Vitamin B5. Raw honey contains vitamin B 5 also known as Pantohenic acid. Vitamin B 5 is present in your blood plasma where it maintains the balance of hormones and keeps nervous system in top condition.
As vitamins are essential to the health of the human body taking raw honey regularly is like injecting a full vitamins dose to the human body in order to supplement the imbalances of vitamin deficiency.


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