For centuries, traditional healers have used Royal Jelly to address a wide range of concerns – from muscle aches to infections – longevity to virility. Today, it’s marketed as a nutritional supplement, health food, and a topical ingredient in cosmetics. The theory behind this widespread use stems from the purpose Royal Jelly (RJ) serves in nature. RJ is the exclusive sustenance of the queen honeybee. In fact, worker bees produce RJ solely to feed the queen and support her larger size, fertility, and longer lifespan (five to eight years, or 40 times longer than other bees). RJ is stored in reserve cells, with as much as a five to six month surplus – one queen alone could never eat all that ‘royal milk!’
Royal Jelly has many nutritive and biologically active properties that account for its use in modern botanical medicine, as well as growing interest from the scientific community. Not only is it a rich source of B vitamins, it contains amino acids, sugars, fats, and flavonoids. Of all the compounds in RJ, flavonoids are the most biologically important. They work in the human body to reduce inflammation, fight bacteria, and prevent cell damage that can lead to disease. Flavonoids also contribute to cardiovascular and immune system health. Holistic doctors understand the range of clinical uses of RJ, some of which require more in-depth scientific investigation.
There are some precautions to heed with Royal Jelly: Children, pregnant or nursing women, and anyone who is allergic to bees should consult a physician before using RJ products.
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