People have adored bees for their delicious honey and crop pollination for centuries, but few know that these wonderful creatures can do so much more than that! These little workers are able to produce some of nature’s most potent medicinal products. Bee byproducts are widely used as health supplements and incorporated into skin cosmetics to offer astonishing physical and psychological benefits.
Apitherapy (also known as "bee therapy") has remarkable benefits for skin health, illnesses, and injury. While this might sound like a new alternative medicine "fad" being thrown around, apitherapy has been used since ancient times by Greeks, Chinese, and Romans for medicinal purposes. In fact, Hippocrates (460 BCE), a Greek physician deemed the "Father of Medicine," recognized bee venom as a healing agent for arthritis and other joint problems!
What is apitherapy?
Apitherapy is a large part of alternative therapies based on bee product usage for medicinal practice. Patients seek out apitherapy for various reasons such as curing pain, wounds, gout, arthritis, shingles, burns, infections, and even neurological diseases like multiple sclerosis.
During an apitherapy treatment, honeybee products may be applied topically, taken orally, or injected into the bloodstream.
What are the benefits of apitherapy?
Developing scientific evidence suggests that bee products promote internal healing by improving circulation, lowering inflammation, and stimulating a positive immune response. The American Apitherapy Society states there is anecdotal evidence that shows bee products are useful in the treatment of various health conditions such as,
- Cardiovascular disease: hypertension, arrhythmias, varicose veins, atherosclerosis
- Endocrine disorders: menstrual cramps, irregular periods, decreased blood sugar levels
- Infections: herpes simplex 1 and 2, laryngitis, mastitis
- Psychological disorders: depression, anxiety, mood swings
- Rheumatological disturbances: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis, "tennis elbow"
- Skin conditions: acne, eczema, psoriasis, corns, warts, topical ulcers
What bee byproducts are used for apitherapy?
While it's safe to assume we are all familiar with bee's most famous output, honey… they also produce a handful of other miraculous products that can play a significant part in keeping our skin healthy and body happy. Let’s take a look!
Honey usage in apitherapy
Honey is plant nectar that bees have converted to simple sugars and dehydrated for energy and winter nutrition. Aside from being a deliciously sweet treat, honey is frequently used to dress wounds and cure infections. Thanks to its potent antibacterial properties, honey can reduce healing times and scarring when used on injuries, even postoperative wounds.
Raw honey is also an excellent home remedy for relieving mild to moderate allergy symptoms. Eating two tablespoons of honey daily is recommended to treat pollen-related allergies in the spring and summertime. Other benefits of raw honey consumption include relief of:
- Sore throat
- Liver disturbances
- Kidney imbalances
- Duodenal ulcers
When using honey for medicinal purposes, it's essential to use raw, natural honey. So, don't miss out - be sure to sign up for our 2021 Harvest Hive-Share!
What Keepers Collective products include honey?
Bee pollen usage in apitherapy
Bees consume pollen as their primary source of protein, but it also has terrific benefits for humans! It's been scientifically proven to improve prostate problems, allergy symptoms, anemia, ulcers, high blood pressure, endocrine disorders, and even sex drive. Chock full of essential amino acids, vitamins B, C, D, and E, and dozens of fatty acid - bee pollen is thought to stimulate cell renewal, revealing brighter and smoother skin.
When applied topically, bee pollen can improve acne and skin vitality and treat diaper rash and other rash-like symptoms.
What Keepers Collective products include bee pollen?
Propolis usage in apitherapy
Used as a sealant within the beehive, propolis has powerful antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. When added to a mouth rinse, propolis resulted in reduced gingivitis and plaque. It may even help to heal and prevent canker sores. It has earned the nickname "Russian penicillin," as it is used as a detoxifying agent to cure various wounds, including burns, inflammation, and ulcers where antibiotics are not widely available.
What Keepers Collective products include propolis?
Royal jelly usage in apitherapy
In the hive world, royal jelly is fed to baby bees and the queen. It has notable antibacterial effects when used topically and has been shown to expedite skin cell turnover rate and improve aging signs such as fine lines and wrinkles. When ingested, royal jelly contains many vital vitamins and nutrients that can contribute to overall health, including improving hair and skin appearance.
What Keepers Collective products include royal jelly?
Bee venom usage in apitherapy
The average person often tries to avoid bee stings, but evidence supports that there are numerous medical effects of bee venom. It has been shown to act as an anti-inflammatory and is often used in a Hydrogel dressing to expedite wounds' healing process.
Bee venom therapy is an acupuncture-like treatment where patients are purposely stung (by a live bee or by injection) on a regimen to elicit the substance’s substance's positive effects. It has proven beneficial for those with epilepsy, arthritis, asthma, multiple sclerosis, migraines, sinusitis, and more. If you are prone to allergic reactions, it is best to avoid bee sting therapy.
Interested in discovering ways to practice apitherapy at home? Here are 6 ways you can have a bee-inspired spa day at home!