We all know the product they make the friends bees called honey and we usually associate it with the sweet taste, the amber color and the sticky consistency, but not all honeys are like that and it is not always easy to choose a high quality honey. THE there are many factors that determine its color, its texture, its flavor and its beneficial properties, but the essential thing is to know how to choose and recognize a good quality honey among the various honeys that are on the market.
Read the label: origin of honey
The first thing to consider when buying honey, if you want to choose a high quality product, is learn to read the product label. First of all, honey can be produced in the country or abroad and this can be known by reading the wording on the product that indicates "blend of honeys from various European and non-European countries".
This phrase precisely indicates that honey can be all or part of non-European origin and therefore we will not have many guarantees of honey production procedures. But if scegliamo un miele 100% del paese we will know that it is a honey of excellent quality because the standards of our country are very high and we have many guarantees also obtained thanks to the various hygiene and safety standards and to the checks carried out during all stages of honey production.
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Another good idea is to read on the label if there is any certification such as that honey is "Of organic farming origin" or it is a PDO product (protected designation of origin). The first certification states that that honey was produced under the organic farming protocol and this guarantees the absence of residues of chemical substances such as drugs, antibiotics or pesticides inside the honey and also the whole process of breeding bees up to the sale of honey is regulated with procedures that avoid contamination of substances of chemical synthesis and favor the good balance of the natural biological system.
The products named PDO instead respect a production protocol that guarantees typicality and tradition of that particular product linked to the area of origin of its production.
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Honey: Local and industrial
Reading the labels we will be able to recognize the best honeys but we will also be able make conscious purchases by supporting local realities and the beekeeping tradition of our country. In the farmers and local markets we will be able to find small honey producers that offer truly niche 0 km products with unobtainable and unrepeatable flavors and aromas.
These honeys are unique from year to year because they collect the essence of the flowering of that territory at that particular moment. The following year the conditions will be different and there will never be a production of honey identical to the previous ones.
This therefore reflects their genuineness and the great value of uniqueness that is enclosed in a jar of honey. The standardized and equal honey product is instead typical of production for large-scale distribution that requires identical colors, smells and flavors every day and throughout the year. Prices must remain fixed and the product must be standardized thus losing its uniqueness. Small producers, on the other hand, thanks to the variability of the nature, are able to produce real treasures with truly special flavors.
Choosing honey seems like an easy choice but if we want to enter this world we will discover that all honeys are different. We all usually associate the taste of honey with sweetness but we may later discover that there are many bitter-tasting honeys or even salty with an aftertaste so special that we would never have thought existed. Furthermore consistency honey can vary from extremely liquid, fluid, to creamy to grainy, up to becoming compact and solid.
The colors are the most different with shades that turn to green and gray, passing through red and dark brown or on the clear shades of yellow almost milky-white or even towards the transparencies of orange and amber.
Honeys are classified both according to the origin of the flower or pollinated flowers and according to their beneficial properties. We remember that they are called the mind is unifloral those honeys that derive from the foraging of bees of a single species of flower such as acacia or chestnut honey while they are defined millefiori honey when there are multiple flower species.
The best known unifloral honeys are: acacia honey, chestnut honey, linden honey, lavender honey, orange honey, heather honey, alfalfa honey, eucalyptus honey, sunflower honey, clover honey, dandelion and thyme honey.
>> What are the calories and nutritional values of honey?
When to eat honey
Honey is a food composed essentially of simple sugars such as glucose and fructose, therefore it gives the body energy to be used immediately. Great of course to start the day during breakfast which can be simply made with fruit and honey or bread and honey. Furthermore, every moment you need an extra dose of energy, honey can be the perfect food to get it. Approximately 50 to 100 grams of honey per day are recommended for adults.
For children in childhood honey is a great alternative to white sugar. It has become important to know that white sugar "steals" the mineral salts from the body and brings various problems to the organism, while honey, in addition to supporting and stimulating growth, even manages to favor the fixation of mineral salts in the body.
Honey is employed in cases of influence, debilitation, anemia, respiratory problems such as coughs and colds but also in cases of intestinal discomfort such as constipation and fermentation. It it is an excellent tonic and it has high antibacterial and antiviral properties that make it a remedy that can be used as a natural antibiotic. The dosage of honey to obtain its beneficial properties is 3 teaspoons per day.
Honey is excellent for sportsmen both during and after a performance, thanks to its ability to fortify muscles, help recovery and increase endurance in competitions.
Pay attention to the use of honey for ...
Diabetic subjects they cannot consume sugar and honey is essentially composed of glucose and fructose. When sugars are absorbed they reach the bloodstream and lead to a rise in blood sugar. For diabetics this process must be kept extremely under control and therefore people suffering from this pathology cannot consume honey.
Furthermore also small children under the age of one year they cannot consume honey. This is because their immune systems are not yet fully developed and there may be substances inside the honey that could lead to food poisoning in the young child. Under one year of age it is therefore not recommended to take honey while subsequently after complete weaning in pediatric age, honey will also become an excellent aid for the growth of the child.
To learn more:
>> Wildflower honey, properties and nutritional values
>> Honeydew honey, properties and nutritional values
>> Chestnut honey, properties and nutritional values
>> Eucalyptus honey, properties and use in the kitchen