Bees and All Their Benefits: Honey, Propolis, and Pollen, oh my!

Most of us are familiar with the health benefits of honey. Not only is it a delicious addition to tea, but this sweet syrup provides antioxidants, minerals and enzymes and has antibiotic properties (1).

Propolis, What is it?

What’s slightly less well-known is another bee-created product called propolis. Coined by Aristotle, propolis literally means “in front of the city”, which is a nod to its role in defending the beehive (2). Bees produce propolis from tree and plant resins, which have natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties. Bees collect these resins and coat their hives with it, even lining the cells of newborn bees to prevent infection. Think of propolis as the bee-version of our disinfectant wipes. Amazingly, bees also create a propolis “door mat” at the entrance of their hive, which serves to protect the hive from any microbes brought in by animal intruders.

Humans have used Propolis, also known as “bee glue”, for centuries, for everything from embalming mummies in Egypt, healing wounds in Ancient Greece and Rome, to antibiotic treatments during World War II. Today, propolis can be used to promote wound healing, burns, acne, gingivitis, bug bites, and general immune system-boosting.

The Benefits of Propolis & Bee Pollen

Propolis is also uniquely beneficial for those with auto-immune disorders like Celiac disease, Graves’ disease, Hashimoto thyroiditis, and Crohn’s disease. Because auto-immune disorders are characterized by an over-active immune system, it’s important to choose products that don’t overactivate the immune response. Propolis contains enzymes and probiotics that promote a balance between immune system boosting and regulation.

Another beneficial bee-derived product is bee pollen. Bee pollen is a mixture of flower pollen, wax, and bee secretions, and is the main food source for bees. Bee pollen can be considered “nature’s multivitamin”, containing vitamins, minerals, and branched-chain amino acids (3). For energy-boosting benefits, try one teaspoon of bee pollen per day, before or after exercise, or sprinkled on your breakfast of choice. If you suffer from pollen allergies, start with a smaller amount (1/2 teaspoon per day) and slowly move up to 1 teaspoon/day as tolerated.

Stock Up On Our Propolis & Honey Derived Natural Products!

Here at Johnson Compounding and Wellness, we offer Propolis Throat Spray, B-Powered Superfood Honey, B-Soothed Cough Syrup, and B LXR Brain Fuel with Royal Jelly by Beekeeper’s Naturals ®. For the month of April –  buy any size of B-Powered Superfood Honey and get 50% off 1 Propolis Throat Spray or 3 packs of the B-LX (valid in store or via phone only)!

Learn more about Beekeeper’s Naturals:

Carly Stein, the founder and CEO, pays close attention to how their products are sourced. Because bees forage within a 5-mile radius, many “organic” propolis brands actually contain trace pesticide residues from neighboring land. Beekeeper’s Naturals carefully produced their beekeeping site in Canada, which has more open land and stricter pesticide regulations. Beekeeper’s Naturals also prioritizes the ethical sourcing of bee products, ensuring the happiness and health of their bees at all stages of the process.

  1. Lusby PE, Coombes AL, Wilkinson JM. Bactericidal activity of different honeys against pathogenic bacteria. Arch Med Res. 2005 Sep-Oct;36(5):464-7. doi: 10.1016/j.arcmed.2005.03.038. PMID: 16099322.

 

  1. Wagh VD. Propolis: a wonder bees product and its pharmacological potentials. Adv Pharmacol Sci. 2013;2013:308249. doi:10.1155/2013/308249

 

  1. Komosinska-Vassev K, Olczyk P, Kaźmierczak J, Mencner L, Olczyk K. Bee pollen: chemical composition and therapeutic application. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:297425. doi:10.1155/2015/297425

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