Honey is a healthy natural food that has no need of adding a preservative before being packed in a jar. Well closed, real honey can exist in last up to several thousand years. It is a product which cannot go off, both as a food and medicine.
Honey is the most popular bee product that has been appreciated and used for centuries, and a lot has been written about its beneficial properties. Long time ago, when modern medicine was not at this level of development, folk doctors used different mixtures in their treatments, whose base was simply honey.
Even modern medicine prices honey as a valuable food for man, from his birth until deep old age, in health and in disease. It consists of almost all the elements that are necessary for normal growth and development of children.
Unfortunately, nowadays, there is honey on the market that can bring more harm than benefit. Despite the fact that many producers use antibiotics during production, it is confirmed that they sell fake honey that can cause allergies, especially in children.
What’s the taste of fake honey?
It has a similar taste asreal honey, and actually it is sugar syrup flavored with herbs from which bees collect nectar. This syrup is made artificially by humans instead of bees and does not crystallize.
In the manufacture, the most commonly used are the corn syrup and molasses (a by-product in the process of sugar production). In the process, the syrup is heated, thus creating hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), a substance which in larger amounts can be toxic. Its presence is revealed only by laboratory analysis.
Artificial honey can be also made by adding sugar and certain acids to real honey and this method can be performed at home.
Should honey crystallize or not?
If your vendor claims that the real honey crystallizes, do not trust him. It is one of the safest ways to identify the real honey. Crystallization is a natural phenomenon, which has a different length of duration, depending on the type of honey.
Therefore, do not “run away” from crystallized honey, since thus you undergo a risk to consume some chemical.
What is honeydew?
Despite the fake honey, on the market vendors also offer so-called forest honey, or honeydew, ie honey that bees collected from secretions of plant lice from the leaves of trees. So, honeydew is used in human nutrition, and has some medicinal properties, however, it is different from the real honey, so it is important to know that it is not floral (nectar) honey.
How to distinguish the real from the fake honey?
For our health, and especially for the health of our children, it is very important to know how to distinguish the real from the fake honey. Although the “forgers” of honey have a good practice in their craft and know how to fool us easily, there are several ways that can be of help to uncover them:
1. If honey does not crystallize after a few months (except acacia honey, whose crystallization takes longer), make sure that it is fake honey.
2. Fake honey is more liquid than the real one- inject a toothpick in honey and take it out. Your honey is natural and high quality if an uninterrupted honey sequence runs down the toothpick.
3. If the seller tells you that only honey to which is added sugar crystallizes, look for another vendor who will argue the opposite.
4. Put a spoonful of honey and three tablespoons of pure alcohol in a cup. Heat the cup in boiling water and stir. Real honey will dissolve, and the fake one will leave a white patch on the bottom of the cup.
5. If the honey is real, the packaging will write that the weight of the empty jar (this applies to glass jar of 720 ml) is 365 grams. When it is filled with honey to the top, it weighs at least 1360 grams. If you pay attention, you will see that most of the jars in shops write that the full jar weights 950 grams- that is actually fake honey.
6. The price of the product is another clue that can guide you to real honey. You need to calculate all the costs, and to take into account what was the year like (breeding, dry), so the price of honey cannot be lower than the actual cost.