Honey is one of the natural ingredients which we come across in our day-to-day lives. Honey is considered one of the sweet forms of natural sugar, it is also considered for multipurpose use. It has nutritional, medicinal, and cosmetic properties associated. There are varieties of pure honey available for human consumption and commercial production. Here, we are going to discuss the benefits of crystallized honey, why does honey crystallize, is it bad to eat crystallized honey and, how to melt crystallized honey!
Crystallization of honey is a common condition encountered. Granulation is the natural phenomenon due to which the liquid form of honey is converted to a semi-solid form with a granular composition. The honey in crystallized form doesn’t change the quality of honey, however, the appearance and texture differ from the liquid form of honey. Crystallized honey is pure raw honey. The honey crystallizes faster when extracted from the wax cells. Honey is also crystallized when mixed with sugar or other artificial sweetener elements. So, one has to be very careful when buying crystallized honey in the market. To further understand crystallization of honey we have elaborately highlights the benefits of crystallized honey and answered some common questions associated with it in the next segment of this article.
Why does honey crystallize?
Honey contains about 70% sugars and 20% water, which makes it naturally unstable super-saturated sugar solution. The pure form of honey often crystallizes with time. Honey with a low fructose to glucose ratio is likely to crystallize slowly. Honey varietals from flowers such as Dandelion, Aster, Clover, and Rata crystallize in days and weeks. However, honey varietals from flowers such as Tupelo, Acacia, Longan, Eucalyptus, Honeydew, and Leatherwood crystallize slowly as they have high fructose to glucose ratio.
Temperature, relative humidity, and type of packaging are the factors which can affect the crystallization of honey. At the room temperature, the process is dependent on the type and quality of honey. Cooler temperature can delay the process of crystallization, very high temperature can also prevent the crystallization and could be ideal for the storage. The extreme high temperature can spoil honey during long-term storage. These factors impact the natural process of crystallization in honey negatively and even positively.
Is crystallized honey bad?
The crystallized form of honey is as good as the liquid form of pure honey. The crystallization of honey indicates the rawness and pure quality of honey extracted. Semi-solid form of honey is preferred by some of the customers as it avoids messy drips while consumption. There are means to return the crystallized form of honey to the liquid state naturally. Raw honey testing can be confirmed if the honey crystallizes over time. The process doesn’t impact the taste; however, it impacts the appearance and texture of honey. Raw honey recipes are easier to prepare with partially or fully crystallized form of honey. The benefits of crystallized honey have been discussed in the below segment highlighting the cosmetic and medicinal properties of honey.
What are the benefits of crystallized honey?
Honey in its crystallized form has been misunderstood by us for a few years now. It is essential to understand the natural process of honey production and the different states of availability. The crystallization of honey is a natural and uncontrolled process. In a simple word, crystallized honey is pure raw honey.
Benefits of crystallized honey
- Crystallized honey can be used to treat seasonal allergies such as pollen fever, allergic conjunctivitis.
- It is used with Lukewarm water and lemon juice for weight reduction
- It is also used for its antiseptic due to its healing property
- Its effectively used in the treatment of cold and cough
- Honey is used to treat acne, due to its anti-bacterial properties
- Honey also contains antioxidants which help in slowing down the aging process
- It helps in smoothening and moistures the skin naturally
- It is used to treat mouth infection and ulcer in infants and toddlers.
- Acts as a natural hair tonic and hair mask
- Crystallized honey is good for treating bad breath
- Crystallized honey makes the best lip scrub
How to melt crystallized honey?
The crystallized form of honey can be subjected to the thermal procedure at home to return to its original form. A warm water bath at a temperature of 40-45 degree can be used in which the bottle of honey can be placed for 15-20 minutes. The granules are dissolved during the thermal process. However, it is not advisable to subject the honey to heat for a longer duration. The exposure to heat treatment for a longer duration can destroy the natural enzymes available.
After the thermal treatment, honey must be stored in an air-tight container at room temperature. The storage in the refrigerator must be avoided as it can accelerate the process of crystallization in raw honey. Processed honey available in the supermarkets does not crystallize easily. However, the unfiltered raw honey crystallizes faster as it contains wax bits, pollen grains which serves as a nucleus accelerating the crystallization process.
Pure raw honey and processed honey
There are various indicators such as fragrance, taste, and consistency which help in determining the quality of honey and benefits of crystallized honey. The granular form of honey is preferred for cosmetic procedures as it acts as a natural scrub with the granules present in it. Raw honey which is sold by locals should be procured as it has high nutritional value, whereas processed honey is not always the pure form of honey available to the customers. Currently, there are various brands which have been engaged in the sales of honey with the ongoing demand for organic products worldwide.
The use of honey for a different type of procedures has helped in increasing the current demand. Honey has been effectively used as a substitute for sugar, as it has low fat, dietary, and protein content. The crystallized form of honey is considered as a gift of nature, by most of the apiculture centers. Honey in its pure form also finds religious significance in Hinduism and Judaism.
Crystallized honey is not always impure honey
The crystallized form of honey should not be considered as an impure form of honey. Even though there are lots of artificial honey which are crystallized because of the chemical added to it. Therefore, we must find various other ways for testing the sample of honey available at the supermarkets. This would help in ensuring the purity and quality of product procured at the right price. Raw honey has been in demand and would be further in demand due to the cosmetic properties associated with it. Thus, we would love to hear more about the raw honey and your experiences related to its use.