Royal jelly is a substance which is secreted by glands found on the heads of worker bees. This bee’s chemical substance serves as a special food for the queen of the bee colony. All bees are born the same. However, the prospected queen will then be served with royal jelly so that she can properly develop into the colony’s queen. The queen bee exclusively feeds on royal jelly. Because of this kind of diet, the queen bee is larger and lives longer than any other bee in the colony. It is the equivalent of breast milk that Mother Nature has designed for babies. But there’s more about royal jelly because there are a variety of medicinal uses derived from it.
Clinical studies reveal that the active ingredient in royal jelly which makes it very nutritious not only for young, developing queen bees but also to human health is called royalactin.
Physically, this substance is viscous to creamy in consistency and milky – white in color. Chemically, royal jelly naturally consists of approximately 60 to 70 % water, 10 to 15 % protein, 10 to 20 % sugar and carbohydrates, 3 to 6 % fats and trace amounts of vitamins and minerals.
Studies show that royal jelly is rich in vitamins A, C, D, E and B. The minerals it contains include calcium, iron, potassium, sulfur and phosphorus. Because of this nutrient-rich property, royal jelly is effective in reducing stress levels.
One of the important amino acid is aspartic acid, which is found helpful in the treatment of fatigue and depression. It has also been used as good source of Vitamin B and as an anti-aging ingredient in many beauty products.
Royal jelly is very nutritious. In fact, many health product manufacturers have discovered that royal jelly is an excellent source of nutrients. Aside from the macronutrients and micronutrients it contains, royal jelly is also rich in the chemical compound called acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a brain chemical which is required for the transmission of nerve impulses from one cell to another. This neuro-chemical is also important for the prevention of certain degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. In addition, royal jelly also contains gamma globulins which are helpful in the improvement of immune system health.
What exactly are the health benefits of royal jelly?
- Stress reduction – The presence of inositol helps in the regulation of hormones adrenaline as well as endorphins in the body which then helps in reducing stress as well as anxiety.
- Stronger immune system – Some properties of royal jelly help boost the immune system. Strong immune system means better resistance against infection caused by invading bacteria and viruses. The immune system also plays an important role in the prevention of cancer.
- Healthy and youthful skin – Because of the amino acids that consist one of the critical components of royal jelly, this substance has been harnessed by humans to promote rejuvenation of the skin. This is one reason royal jelly has been regarded as a food to keep your youth. In addition, royal jelly has been used to treat skin problems such as eczema, rashes and other skin irritation caused by excessive dryness.
- Maintenance of healthy cholesterol levels – One of the amazing properties of royal jelly is its ability to maintain good levels of high density cholesterol. Unlike the low density cholesterol (LDL) that clogs blood vessels leading to a serious condition called atherosclerosis (an insidious process where accumulation of cholesterol in the walls of the blood vessels can cause reduction of blood flow to vital organs like the brain, heart and the kidneys), high density cholesterol (HDL) helps prevent it by acting like a mop to remove excess cholesterol deposited in blood vessel walls and deliver it back to the liver for elimination through the gastrointestinal tract.
- Maintenance of enzyme levels – Royal jelly is believed to help improve digestion. This is because it has the ability to help the body in the production of enzymes that aid in the breaking down of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. This ensures proper digestion of food substances that will be more efficiently utilized by the body cells.
- Other health benefits of royal jelly – Royal jelly is said to help resolve some of the symptoms associated with other health problems like kidney disorders, insomnia and anorexia. It has also been used as an alternative treatment to asthma, asthenia, hepatitis, arthritis and gout.
Here is a word of caution though: Royal jelly may not be for everyone. People with history of allergy to honey or other related products should avoid taking royal jelly supplements.
“Royal Jelly“. The Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine. http://www.altmd.com/Articles/Royal-Jelly–Encyclopedia-of-Alternative-Medicine
Toth, P. (2005). “The Good Cholesterol” American Health Association. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/111/5/e89.full
“Wonderful Health Benefits of Royal Jelly“. http://herbscancure.com/blog/health-benefits-of-royal-jelly/