Mad honey is a complex, natural, raw, exotic food produced from the nectars of wildflowers by Apis dorsata, the world’s largest honeybee also called as giant honeybees. There are many varieties of wildflowers found in an altitude of 4100m and high where these honeybees reside but the common flowers that make the mad honey mad are the species of Rhododendron especially Rhododendron luteum and Rhododendron ponticum found in the Annapurna and Manaslu region of Nepal. The nectars and pollens from these Rhododendrons have significant amount of grayanotoxins which adds intoxicating or hallucinogenic or mad property to the honey.
The honey-hunting business is life defying and it takes a great deal of courage. Brave Gurung and Ghale tribesmen who live in the food of great Himalayas of Nepal especially Manaslu and Annapurna range set up on the life-defying journey up the cliff aided by the finely braided bamboo ropes and shards of wood and they fight the battle against most dangerous honeybees of the world. These tribesmen believe that they have spiritual connection with these bees, and they are the quality to handle and adjust with these bees.
Composition of Mad Honey
Research performed by Bogdanov et al and Eteraf-Oskouei et al has concluded that the composition of mad honey is as following: –
|S. N.||Components||Value per 100-gram honey|
|1||Total carbohydrates||82.4 g|
|6||Amino acids||0.3 g|
|7||Total acids||0.57 g|
|8||Moisture content||17.1 g|
Due to the intense composition, this honey can be used for colds, wound healing, diabetes, sexual stimulation, hypertension, diabetes, ulcers and gastritis among other diseases.
Advantages of Mad Honey
An investigation done by Tatli et al in 2016 reported significantly higher levels of total testosterone and free testosterone in the people who consumed 80mg/kg Himalayan Cliff Honey to those who consumed normal honey and who didn’t consume honey at all. This study revealed the benefits of using cliff honey to increase sexual performance, drive, desire, and fertility.
The chief ingredient in this honey is andromedotoxin which comes from the Greek word “Andros” which means man, warrior, manly supporting the modern days’ scientific basis from well-established historical evidence.
Stress reliver, treats insomnia
The psychedelics present in this honey helps to relive stress and alters the cognitive processes by instantly making one’s mood calm, soothing, content and blissful.
Stress and anxiety are eased and insomnia, migraines are treated by the correct dose of this honey.
A study by Tezcan, F. in 2011 and Alzahrani. H.A in 2021 reported the presence of thousands of phenolic compounds in the Himalayan Cliff Honey. These phenolic compounds with antioxidant properties protect the cells from free radicals.
Oxidative stress caused by free radicals in the body tends to distort the balance of oxidants and antioxidants. This disbalance damages healthy cells. Antioxidants present in cliff honey rummage free radicals from our body hence, preventing and reducing the damages.
This honey is composed of different varieties of minerals which are essential for the functioning and regulation of the body. Study shows that 100 gram of this honey has 0.041g of Nitrogen, 0.169g of Ash, 6.00mg Calcium, 4.00mg Phosphorous, 52mg Potassium, 0.42mg Iron, and 2.00mg Magnesium.
These minerals are needed for muscle functions, normal growth, bone functions, nerve regulations, respiratory functions, and much other body operation.
The phenolic compounds in the cliff honey exhibit anti-cancer properties by arresting the cell cycle, elimination of drug resistance, hindering angiogenesis, and generating epigenetic changes. So, if you are trying to protect or reduce the cancer symptoms, you need to start consuming this honey in an appropriate dose.
The controlled amount of this honey, due to the presence of grayanotoxin and many minerals like Na, K, Mg, etc., supports heart health by lowering hypertension and maintaining balance in the body.
Helps in Diabetes Mellitus
A study done in rats has shown the use of this honey to reduce the blood glucose level along with lipid level which aids to control diabetes mellitus ultimately. Thus, this honey is beneficial to protect and reduce the symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus.
In this honey, we can find active agents that help to inhibit the growth of microorganisms, destroy them and inhibit their colony formation thus, protecting our body by acting as an anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial agent.
Other health benefits include:
Himalayan Cliff Honey can be used to relieve abdominal/gastric pain.
It can be used as an alternative medicine for skin ailments, pain, and cold.
It has anti-inflammatory properties.
It is also reported to be hepato-protective.
It is used to treat endocrine disorders.