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The Natural Power of Bees
The Natural Power of Bees. Bees are my favourite type of insects. The natural power of bees inspires me. They’re industrious, they work well as a team, and they look cute in cartoons! In the last year it has saddened me to read about the decline of bee populations due to Colony Collapse Disorder, which is the unexplained loss of bees from hives that beekeepers first started noticing in 2006. Since then bees have been disappearing at a rapid rate in places all over the world.
Bees are essential to feeding everyone on earth as they are the main pollinators for most of world’s food. If they are gone, then most people would starve, which is why scientists are very concerned with the increase of disappearing bees.
I recently watched an awesome TED Talks by Marla Spivak, a professor of entomology at the University of Minnesota. She talked about the natural power of bees. Professor Spivak has studied bees for many years. Spivak has even developed the Minnesota Hygienic line of bees. This bee line can detect when pupae are infected, and kick them out of the hive, ultimately saving the hive. She’s definitely a rock star in the world of bee research!
The Importance of Bees
“When bees have access to good nutrition, we have access to good nutrition…” through their pollination services—Marla Spivka
Check out her TED Talks:
After hearing her talk I want to kiss a beekeeper!
Beekeepers usually ship bees to farms so farmers can produce food, then ship the bees back after planting is done. If farmers had to hand pollinate fruits and veggies can you imagine the increase in food costs?? Who wants to pay $15.00 or $20.00 for a single apple or onion?
Spivka pointed out four ways to help the bees:
- Planting cover crops like alfalfa and clover
- No mono cropping (Planting just one type of vegetable)
- Plant bee friendly flowers
- Eliminating chemical pesticides
Listed below are some beekeepers I want to kiss:
Especially since they keep bees using natural methods and know about the natural power of bees. If you see them give them a kiss for me!
YS Eco Bee Farms Bigger company. I use their raw (unheated) honey.
Side note: Raw (unheated) honey has more healing properties than honey that is heated, and the only type I use. I only use honey when I have a cold or sore throat. I stir it in hot water and add fresh squeezed lemon juice and turmeric.
Bees produce several things that humans use for food. Have you ever wondered what the difference is between: Bee Pollen, Bee Propolis, Honey, and Royal Jelly? Here’s a more in-depth look.
Difference Between Bee Pollen, Bee Propolis, Royal Jelly, and Honey
Many people think bee pollen, bee propolis, royal jelly, and honey are all the same; but they aren’t. Each one of these has a specific purpose within a bee hive.
- Bee Pollen is made by honeybees that fly to several flowers, collecting pollen used as a principal food source to feed younger bees. They collect the pollen with their back legs and mix with a stomach secretion to form into granules. It’s considered a complete food by some natural health enthusiasts since it’s loaded with nutrients and has many health benefits for humans.
- Bee Propolis is made by bees mixing tree bark with their secretions. It’s a sticky substance used mainly to seal the hive to help protect it from the elements and from invaders. It’s also used to repair the hive. It too, has numerous health benefits.
- Royal Jelly is a secretion from worker bees and nursing bees that’s fed to newly developing queen bees and her larvae. It increases the development of the bees and their life expectancy.
- Honey is made by bees gathering nectar from flowers and regurgitating the liquid into another bee’s mouth. This regurgitation process is repeated until the partially digested nectar is deposited into a honeycomb in the hive.
The Health Benefits
Now you know the difference between bee pollen, bee propolis, honey, and royal jelly. Let’s take a look at the health benefits of each one.
- Kills bacteria
- Lower blood pressure
- Treat allergies**
- Strengthen bones
- Protects against some types of cancer
- Boosts immune system
- Increases fertility
- Boosts heart function
- Improves digestion
- Improves respiratory system
- Boosts metabolism
- Treat allergies**
- Soothes skin
- Lowers cholesterol
- Boosts liver function
- Tones and moisturises skin
- Treats diabetes
- Boosts brain function
- Protects against cancer
- Boosts kidney function
- Treats high blood pressure
- Treats colds and flu
- Soothes sore throat
- Treats allergies**
- Severe burn and infection treatment (Manuka honey)
- Skin beauty treatments
Side note: If you have outdoor allergies use locally sourced honey since bees in your area feed off some of the flowers you’re allergic too. The thinking amongst holistic health experts is that eating local honey lessens symptoms.
I hope that this information inspires you to take good care of our bee friends, since our survival depends on them. Help maintain the natural power of bees. Now go out and plant some clover and alfalfa!