So you thought the honey you consume on a daily basis was 100% pure? Think again, for there can be more to that bottle of honey than meets the eye.
Making tall claims about the purity of honey in television and prints ads is one thing and what the customer gets sold is a different ball game all together. Many a times, as misinformed customers, we do end up buying the truth the companies want us to believe in only to discover much later that it was all nothing but honey coated lies.
So is there a way one can know the difference between pure honey and an adulterated one? Without checking the purity of honey, it can get slightly difficult to reach any conclusion. To determine the quality of honey, honey purity test can easily be conducted at home.
Raw honey vs fake honey
Not all honey are created equally. Raw honey is the most original and unadulterated form of honey produced by the bees from the concentrated nectar of the flowers. Collected straight from the source, it is totally unpasteurized, unheated and unprocessed. The nectar collected from the bees goes through three levels of processing before it reaches the end user.
The first stage entails processing in which the enzymes are injected into the honey to thicken it. The process also aids in fermentation of the nectar. Once the honey has fermented, it is further processed to add more thickness to its consistency. In the third and the final step, water is extracted out of honey to make it lose 80% of its total water content, make it thick and add a deep, rich golden brown colour to it.
Fake honey, also known as adulterated impure or artificial honey, is the honey that has added sugar syrups, molasses, corn syrup, dextrose, and other flavours and additives. It might be good to look at, but has all its nutrients and nutritional value sucked out of it during the manufacturing process.
Want to know how to check if honey is pure? By examining the physical qualities of honey, it is very easy to know whether it is pure or impure. Look out for these signs:
- Pure honey has a sweet aroma whereas fake honey smells sour or most of the times has no aroma
- One feels a mild burning sensation in the throat while consuming pure honey. But in case of fake honey no such thing happens
- Pure or raw honey never separates into layers. However, same is not the case with fake honey and one can always see formation of layers in it
- Raw honey might come packed with natural impurities like pollen, bee bread and micro-particles of wax, but they are edible and causes no harm. Fake honey on the other hand has no such impurities in it.
- Raw honey has a smoother texture as compared to fake hone that usually is on the rough side
- The consistency of raw honey is usually thick and it trickles down in a thin stream. Fake honey on the other hand is quite runny and immediately spreads along the surface
How to identify pure honey?
With a number of options available at the super market, one can easily get swayed by factors like price, packaging, brand etc., while choosing the right kind of honey. Sadly, there are lot of adulterated honey brands that are being sold at cheaper price in the name of naturally and organically produced honey. Therefore, it becomes important to note that most of the honey available isn’t exactly what the bees produce naturally but are factory made, chemical-laden versions of them.
If you wish to enjoy all the benefits of honey, you must keep factors like quality, health and trust in mind before choosing a brand. Yes, it is not an easy task to know that this or that is fake or real. But you will need tests to distinguish between the two since it has been found out that most of the products you see in stores are not really the organic product you are looking for.
Here are a few honey purity tests that you can easily conduct at home and get an answer to the eternal question of how to check purity of honey.
a) The thumb test:
- Dip your thumb in a jar of honey
- If the honey sticks to it and stays intact to your thumb, it means you have managed to get yourself pure honey.
-If it spills or spreads around, just too bad, for what you’ve gotten is a bottle of adulterated honey.
b) The water test:
- Fill a glass with water
- Add 1 tablespoon of honey into the glass
- Adulterated or artificial honey will dissolve in water and you will see it around the glass
- Pure honey, on the other hand will settle right at the bottom of your glass
c) The fire test:
- Take a dry matchstick
- Dip its tip right into the honey
- Strike the stick on the matchbox as if to light it
- If the honey is pure, the matchstick will light with ease
- The flame will also keep burning off the honey
- However, if it is with impurities, it will not light because fake honey contains moisture as one of the impurities
Apart from these test, another common method to tell the difference between pure and impure honey is to add some water and 2-3 drops of vinegar essence into the honey and mix well. If the solution becomes foamy, that is definitely adulterated honey.
Honey is nature’s sweetest gift to mankind and comes packed with a multitude of health benefits. Deemed as a top health food across the globe, honey is a rich source of antioxidants, flavonoids, antibacterial and antiseptic properties. From boosting one’s energy to reducing gastronomical disorders to reducing cough & throat irritation; honey in its purest form is nothing short of a miracle food that one can consume on a daily basis to stay fit and healthy.
A few spoons of honey can do wonders for your skin, hair, weight and overall well-being.