So you go to the grocery store, knowing that some sweeteners are worse for you than others. Honey is all natural, and it’s all the same, right? And you are in a grocery store, so of course the food there is safe, right? Think again!
Honey comes from bees. It can be extracted right from the hive and eaten, full of all the glorious vitamins, enzymes, anti-oxidents and pollen that the bees put there. Or it can be extracted, heated, filtered, and mixed with other things to make it more runny, more clear, or eek out a little bit more money per pound. And how will you know? Without a chemistry lab in your basement, I am not sure you can know. So you have to consume by blind faith in all the unknown people who have touched that bottle of honey since it came out of the hive.
So, instead you could go to your local farmer’s market. That’s better, right? Probably. But even when you go the Farmer’s Market, you still need to ask where the hives are located (ie in the farmer’s fields close by or in some field in China!)!! And while you’re there don’t forget to make sure you ask how it was extracted and what they do to “process” it! If they say it has never been heated or filtered, take a look at it. If it is warm, it might be pourable and see-though. But there is also a chance it will be crystallized. Generally, honey that has been heated to high temperatures doesn’t crystallize, or it takes a long time for that to happen. Here are some benefits of raw honey (honey that has never been heated or processed). The point here is to make sure the honey is from your area, and that there has been nothing added to it (and ideally, nothing removed from it either!).
Bottom line…Get to know some farmers! Having farmers you know and trust, who don’t use chemicals, drugs or GMO’s, will make your shopping easier and your bodies healthier. If they believe in and love what they are doing (regardless of what type of farming practices they use) they should have no problems telling you what’s in/on their products or how they grew or raised it. I have walked away from more than one farmer at a FM when I got the “um…well, not really….” kind of answer. And shopping local is a great way to save money, support your local economy AND be more “Green”!
Asian Honey: Banned in Europe, Is Flooding U.S. Grocery Shelves (RealFarmacy.com)