Bee pollen is got from honey bees. When honey bees fly from flower to flower gathering honey, the pollen in these flowers get stuck to the hairy legs of the bees.
This pollen is gathered by bee keepers and sold as bee pollen after removing debris like hair, wings, legs etc.
Bee pollen is rich in nutrients like proteins (35%), all B-vitamins minus vitamin B-12, vitamins A, K, C and D, 19-24 trace elements, carbohydrates (55%), fiber (5%), fatty acids (2%), all essential amino acids and minerals like calcium, potassium, phosphorous, copper, iron, iodine, sulfur, zinc, sodium, manganese, magnesium, chlorine etc.
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Benefits of Bee Pollen for Weight Loss
Millions of people all over the world try out weight loss programs at some point in their lives. Many people hope there is a short-term fix or a ‘magic potion’ that can quickly get rid of all undesirable and unwanted fat.
A total lifestyle change that includes eating healthy sizeable portions of food and some form of physical activity is what is needed to lose weight and keep it off permanently.
Some over-the-counter supplements and weight loss products could benefit your diet regime. When selecting a product, make sure you collect as much information about it for there are many manufacturers who sell these products based on fraudulent claims.
Bee pollen that is full of many vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other nutrients is available as chewable tablets, capsules, topical creams, raw bee pollen granules, jelly, liquid, powder extracts and such.
Bee pollen is used as a health supplement by athletes to minimize fatigue, increase energy and improve athletic performance.
There are many claims that bee pollen can benefit in weight loss by improving metabolism and taking off excess weight. When metabolism improves, chemical imbalance in the body is corrected.
Bee pollen could speed up the process of converting sugar to energy.
This gives fats the oxygen required to convert to energy quickly. Lecithin in bee pollen is said to increase the speed at which calories get burned. All these improve assimilation of nutrients and digestion.
There is only small evidence backed by scientific research that backs this theory of bee pollen helping with weight loss.
One 28-year old woman took bee pollen for weight loss and found after a few months that she felt energized, worked out for longer periods and started to lose weight.
However, personal testimonials cannot be considered as scientific evidence.
Still, it can hardly be disputed that bee pollen is full of essential nutrients and clinicaltests have found that it gets digested very soon and hence is present in the bloodstream two hours after consumption.
A former coach of a Russian Olympic team found (after a 2 year study) that when bee pollen was given to athletes, they recovered faster after stressful performances. Another study found that performance in athletes was not the same when bee pollen was not part of the diet.
How Can Bee Pollen Be Used In Weight Loss Diets
Before using bee pollen as part of a weight loss regime, you must consult your doctor. Bee pollen is a herbal supplement and hence does not require FDA approval before being sold.
Make sure the bee pollen you buy is from an established brand that sells pharmaceutical-brand supplements. In this case, the bee pollen you purchase will most likely be of high quality.
You can choose which type of supplement you prefer – capsule, liquid, tablet, powder or granules. The proper dosage will be mentioned on the label.
Otherwise, you must check with your doctor. Improper dosage can cause adverse reactions.
Precautions while using bee pollen
While bee pollen is generally considered safe, it could prove dangerous for those who suffer from allergic reactions to pollen, honey or bee stings.
Plant pollen can come from anywhere and anyone who suffers from allergy to any type of plant pollen must avoid bee pollen because you do not know which plants the bee pollen comes from.
Symptoms of allergic reactions include swelling of the throat, hives, redness, itching, and shortness of breath and in extreme cases anaphylactic shock.
Hence, if you have any known allergies or any medical conditions, consult your doctor before including bee pollen in your diet.
Even those with liver disease, allergic asthma and blood disorders must exercise caution. Sometimes bee pollen will be recommended as a treatment for allergies.
Even this could aggravate symptoms if the person suffers from allergy to any pollen found in the supplement. There is lack of evidence about the interaction of bee pollen with drugs.
Hence, consult your doctor about this before starting any bee pollen supplements.
Due to lack of sufficient evidence, children, pregnant and breastfeeding women are advised not to take bee pollen supplements.