When making a transition to a healthier lifestyle, you’d probably immediately think of ways to cut sugar from your diet. Honey is the perfect substitute to satisfy your sweet tooth! However, the honey you’re buying might be causing you more harm than good. With countless options in the supermarket, it’s easy to fall for processed and refined sugar claiming to be honey. So, how to recognise raw honey? Let’s hive in!
Raw Honey: What Exactly Is It?
Before we talk about ways to test raw honey, you need to know what precisely raw honey is.
Raw honey is that thick sweet goodness that comes straight from the beehive – untouched. The way it’s supposed to be! Raw honey is unpasteurised, not heated to high temperatures and ultra-filtered.
Raw honey contains antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, that can contribute to our overall wellbeing and be a part of a healthy lifestyle.
Well, all honey is raw honey. Right?
Wrong! You’ll come across gazillions of bottles of honey in your local supermarket. In all sorts of fancy packaging. However, have you ever stopped to notice how clear and smooth the honey is? How it never crystallises? That’s not what real honey is.
Unless stated otherwise, most honey is pasteurised, processed, and it may contain sugars and sweeteners. Processing honey makes it last longer and ultimately sells better. But at what cost? The cost is removing all beneficial properties that raw honey contains.
How To Recognise Raw Honey?
Apart from the fact that raw honey is cloudier and has a thicker consistency than pasteurised, there are a few other ways to test raw honey right at home with things you already have lying around. Let’s get testing!
The Heat Test
Although you should not heat raw honey as it weakens its enzymes and decreases its nutritional value, we can put it to the test by heating a small portion of it. When pure raw honey is heated, it tends to caramelise quickly. While when impure honey is heated, you’ll notice it begins to bubble.
The Flame Test
Another fun experiment is the flame test. Most of us already know honey is flammable; why not use that property to test it? You dip a matchstick into some honey and strike it against a matchbox. If it lights up a flame, you’ve got pure nature’s goodness. If not, well, unfortunately, you’ve been lied to.
The Water Test
Raw honey is dense, as compared to adulterated honey, which is smooth and runny. So, understandably, when a tablespoon of raw honey is suspended in a glass of water, it will settle to the bottom of the glass. This is because of its viscous nature. Processed honey, on the other hand, will dissolve in the water.
The Vinegar Test
The vinegar test is another method to check for your honey’s purity. Add a tablespoon of the honey in question into a container. Follow that with a few drops of vinegar and some water. If you observe foaming at the surface of your concoction, you’re not consuming raw honey.
The Finger Test
Unlike the tests mentioned above, all you need for this one are your fingers! It’s quick and easy. All you have to do is place a small drop of honey on your finger and move it around slowly. Raw honey doesn’t drip. It sticks to the surface it comes across. However, if it runs down your finger, you’ve got an imposter within the honey community!
The benefits of raw honey are no secret. Honey has been used for its healing benefits ever since the time of ancient Egyptians. However, to enjoy all honey has to offer, we need to ensure the honey we buy is unpasteurised and 100% natural.