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Have You Been Eating High-Priced Fake Honey?

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

fake honey

Story at-a-glance -

  • Testing reveals many of the brands of honey on the grocery store shelves have been adulterated, and some don't even resemble pure honey
  • The antibacterial, antiviral and wound healing properties of pure honey are not present in products that have been heated, thinned or loaded with additional sugars
  • The self-regulated honey industry has failed to produce a consistent quality product; while the market is inundated with fake honey the bee population continues to plummet
  • Several companies are scrambling to dismiss claims of fraud, saying honey wasn't heated — only "gently warmed" — and that there is no consensus on the meaning of the word "raw"
  • You can test your honey at home by evaluating physical properties such as thickness, scent and taste

People have relied on honey for centuries for its health benefits and the enjoyment of its taste. Scientists have found that honey has antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus epidermidis, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Salmonella enterica. It has demonstrated activity against antibiotic-sensitive and antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

It has been used to treat infected wounds, and some researchers have even suggested its use on difficult-to-heal wounds, while being careful to select those that will do well with honey. It's also been infused into wound dressings but only recently has evidence been presented to explain honey's effectiveness in health care.


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