Honey, especially raw, natural, organic honey, has some amazing health benefits. It’s antimicrobial, can help heal burns, and is a powerful decongestant. Not all honey is made equal, however, and to actually get the benefits you have to buy the right one.

6 Ways to Know Your Honey is Natural and Organic

Only a detailed and expert analysis is a guarantee that honey is all natural and organic. But, if you want to know whether the honey you just bought is natural or what many consider to be “fake”, try these simple tricks.

1. Carefully Read The Label
This is the very first step that will help you choose the right, additive-free honey. Producers have to label the content and the percentage by a certain amount.

2. Caramelization
Heat up a few teaspoons of honey in your microwave. High heat works fine. Real honey will eventually caramelize, and fake honey will become all foamy and bubbly due to all of the added ingredients. (Note: real honey will also get a layer of “foam” at the top because you are cooking out the air that is introduced to the honey as it is extracted from the hives.)

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3. Paper
Put a few drops of honey on a sheet of paper. If it does not absorb in the paper after a while, you have got some natural honey. Fake honey contains a lot of water and it will be absorbed into the paper right away.

4. Water and Honey
This is probably the easiest way to tell if there are added ingredients inside of your honey. When soaked in warm or hot water, real honey will dissolve into the water and then after the water cools the honey forms in clumps on the bottom of the container. However, fake honey melts.

5. Honey and Bread
Spread some of your honey on a slice of fresh bread. If the bread becomes too hard, your honey is all natural. Fake honey will only dampen the surface of the bread, due to the large amount of water in it.

6. Crystallization
Real honey crystallizes after a while, and fake honey will keep its liquid, syrup-like composition.

Sources:

FDA labeling: https://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/GuidanceDocumentsRegulatoryInformation/ucm389501.htm

Skin absorption: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2686636/

Caramelization: http://www.beesource.com/resources/usda/honey-composition-and-properties/

Fake honey water content (paper and bread): https://www.bee-america.com/content/how-detect-fake-honey

Mixing water with honey: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/11/tests-show-most-store-honey-isnt-honey/#.VqKSp_krLIW

Honey and tingling: http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/honey/safety/hrb-20059618

Crystallization: http://www.montcobeekeepers.org/Documents/Honey_Crystallization.pdf (Accessed September, 2017).

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