Bees are Ensuring Human Survival: Here’s How
For many people, bees are a nuisance. They buzz around annoyingly, chase people down the street, and sometimes even sting. But even if you hate them, you will still need them because the fact of the matter is if bees were not around, neither would humans.
What if we were to tell you that this “menacing” insect is an important key to human survival? For thousands of years, bees have played an integral part in keeping our livestock fed and our plates full.
This is because as pollinators, bees perform a vital task that ensures the continuation of the primary food source for many land-dwellers, humans included. In fact, studies have identified that 1/3 of the global food supply is pollinated by bees.
Bee-sy Keeping Life Going
All of us know of the phrase “busy as a bee”. Bees travel long distances every day, carrying the pollen with them and spreading them far and wide. This helps many plants to grow, breed, and eventually produce what we know as food. A vast majority of crops that we rely upon as food sources today are pollinated by bees. They include apples, avocados, peppers, strawberries, watermelons, and so many more. Not only that, they also help to pollinate crops that our farmers feed livestock and poultry, keeping the circle of life going.
Let’s not forget that bees themselves also produce honey, an important food source not only for humans, but for many wildlife as well. In recent years, honey has become one of the most sought-after ingredients in the F&B arena as scientific studies have shown that honey is a healthier alternative to table sugar. Honey has been proven to provide various benefits when consumed, one of it being that their rich antioxidant content helps to fend off infections.
More Than Just For Keeping Our Bellies Full
While we are on the subject of honey, did you know that other than being an ingredient in your favourite dessert, honey is used across many industries for various purposes? Honey has shown to possess antibacterial properties, leading pharmaceutical companies all over the world to use honey as an ingredient in their remedies for common illnesses like coughs and sore throats. The sweet taste that honey naturally has serves as an extra bonus – making these remedies more palatable.
Honey has also been traditionally applied as a treatment to heal external wounds for thousands of years. There are records showing that ancient civilizations like the Greeks and Egyptians used honey to treat troops that were injured in battle. Although medicine has developed by leaps and bounds since then, honey can still be good for healing certain wounds. The natural sugars in honey have an osmotic effect, drawing out water from damaged tissues which reduce swelling and encourages lymph flow to the affected area(s). Moreover, honey has an acidic pH of around 3.2 - 4.5. When applied to wounds, the acidic pH encourages the blood to release oxygen, which is an essential process to heal wounds faster.
Another industry that has the bees to thank for is the cosmetics industry. The realization that honey is effective in improving skin conditions has made them popular additions to a plethora of skincare products and toiletries available in the market today. Aside from honey, another bee-produced substance that is creating a boom in the cosmetics world is beeswax. Its water-repelling nature keeps water locked in the skin, giving you a healthy and glowing complexion. Other than skincare products, beeswax is also commonly used in hair care products nowadays to give an extra touch of shine and sleekness.
Being a Part of the Hive
After knowing how much these sociable and hardworking insects contribute to the ecosystem as well as our health and economy, it’s time that we play a part to give bees some much-needed recognition. There has been a worrying decline in bee numbers these past years, mainly due to environmental changes, pollution, and the use of pesticides.
Every one of us can play a part to preserve bees and one of the easiest ways is to start supporting brands like ours that sell authentic honey. The money you pay for a bottle of honey can be used to fund beekeepers, agriculturalists, and researchers in their efforts to preserve these lovely creatures. If bees can play their role to bring food to our table, we humans can also do our due diligence to protect them as well.