Nope, royal jelly not some regal spread you slap together with peanut butter for a quick-fix snack. Rather, royal jelly is a creamy substance produced by young nurse worker bees to feed the Queen Bee in a hive. And just as it services her Majesty, this bee-vital substance can provide a healthy bonus to humans, too. Here is why you should make the Queen Bee's food part of your diet.
Honey is not the only good stuff you can get out of a beehive. Royal jelly, the substance that keeps the Queen Bee thriving, can give your body just as much of a healthy buzz. Secreted from the head of a worker bee, the milky liquid is fed to both young larvae for the first three days of their lives and to the Queen Bee, who receives a daily dosage throughout her life. Containing a plethora of proteins, minerals, and vitamins, it is no surprise that the Queen's five-year lifespan vastly outnumbers that of her minions, who merely live for 40 days.
HOW DO HUMANS GET THIS ROYAL ELIXIR?
First, beekeepers attach specially designed plastic cells containing larvae to the beehive. When worker bees deliver the jelly to those cells, the keepers then collect the substance, and it is eventually dispersed into a variety of forms, including capsules, loose powder, frozen or suspended in honey. If you are a bee-lover, you can rest easy -- this process is not harmful to the hive or its inhabitants. And since a single hive produces enough royal jelly to supply a 500mg dose to 33 people for three months each, there is plenty to spare.
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF ROYAL JELLY?
In the health field, the buzz on royal jelly is purely positive. Subscribers say the boost of vitamins and nutrients works wonders on everything from bronchial asthma to bad skin (in fact, the popular Burts Bees
line of skincare products offers soaps and creams specially blended with royal jelly). Plus, its high amino acid content benefits the body's ability to fight infection and disease. In addition, many cancer patients who have recently undergone radiation and chemotherapy take royal jelly supplements to boost their immune systems and rebuild destroyed cells.
FORMS OF ROYAL JELLY
Ready to give yourself the royal jelly treatment? To add royal jelly to your daily supplement regimen, you can choose from capsules, loose powder, frozen or suspended in honey. However, before you start using this royal elixir, first consult your doctor, particularly if you are pregnant or nursing, take medication or have a chronic disease. A small number of people may have an allergic reaction when taking royal jelly. Discontinue use if you experience an adverse reaction. Capsulated or in tablet form:
Get you B-vitamins, vitamins A, C, D, E and K, several minerals and amino acids in the form of a 500mg tablet. Powdered or freeze-dried royal jelly also comes blended with bee pollen, other nutrients or herbs.
Fresh and frozen royal jelly: Taken directly from the hive, the jelly is packaged in a jar and frozen. In this form, it is super nutritional (the fresher the jelly, the more nutrients you will get), but extremely perishable as well. To take, scoop out a teaspoon twice a day and let it melt under your tongue.
Royal Jelly suspended in honey: The sweeter of the options, this is a combo of royal jelly and pollen-enriched honey. Spread it on bread or fruit, or just scoop up a spoonful for a sweet treat.
For more information on royal jelly, visit these links:
All About Royal Jelly