Bees make sweet wildflower honey from the fragrant pollen of trees, bushes, flowers and herbs near their hive. It’s a rich source of calories and carbohydrates to provide you with a quick energy boost. Eating honey local to your region may even reduce the symptoms of annoying seasonal allergies. Use honey in moderation, as it’s high in sugar, and don’t feed it to infants to avoid potential negative effects.
Wildflower Honey Basics
Bees collect nectar, which contains carbohydrates, from flowers and take it back to their hive. The nectar is partially digested into more simple sugars and stored in the honeycomb inside the hive. Eventually it loses moisture and condenses into thick, sweet honey. The type of flowers the nectar came from influences the color and flavor of the resulting honey. Some common varieties are clover, alfalfa or orange blossom. If the bees use a variety of flowers found in nature, the honey is simply referred to as wildflower honey.
The mild floral flavor and sweetness of wildflower honey make it a popular sweetener for hot or cold tea. You can use it to sweeten other beverages, such as coffee, as well. Try drizzling golden wildflower honey on top of pancakes or waffles instead of maple syrup or using it on muffins and biscuits instead of jam. Honey is an all natural alternative to refined white table sugar or corn syrup.
In rare cases honey may contain botulism spores, which are harmful to your health. Side effects of ingesting botulism include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps or difficulty breathing. Honey should not be fed to infants under 1 year old because of the risk of botulism, according the University of Maryland Medical Center. Contact your health care provider immediately if symptoms arise.