Bee pollen’s nutritional value has been recognized for thousands of years
Early Egyptian and Chinese civilizations both relied on it, as did the Greek physician Hippocrates (commonly known as the Father of Modern Medicine).
Bee pollen is composed of 55% carbohydrates, 35% protein, 3% vitamins and minerals, 2% fatty acids, and 5% other substances. Its high protein content is makes it a perfect supplement for vegans, vegetarians, and others who find it challenging to include sufficient protein in their diets.
Bee pollen contains over a dozen vitamins, 28 minerals, 11 enzymes and co-enzymes, and 14 fatty acids. It is especially rich in B vitamins and antioxidants, including lycopene, selenium, beta carotene, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and several flavanoids.
Bee Pollen Vitamins
- Provitamin A (beta-carotene) – Beta-carotene is a substance from plants that the body converts into Vitamin A. It also acts as an antioxidant and an immune system booster.
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine) – Thiamine is needed to process carbohydrates, fat, and protein. Every cell of the body requires Vitamin B1 to form the fuel the body runs on. Thiamine aids the nervous system, and is essential for the transmission of certain types of nerve signal between the brain and the spinal cord.
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – Riboflavin is important to energy metabolism, normal eyesight and healthy skin. It is required by the body to use oxygen and the metabolism of amino acids, fatty acids, and carbohydrates, as well as activate vitamin B6 (pyridoxine). Riboflavin is further needed to create niacin and assists the adrenal gland.
- Vitamin B3 (niacin/nicotinamide) – Niacin is required for cell respiration, helps in the release of energy and metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, proper circulation and healthy skin, functioning of the nervous system, and normal secretion of bile and stomach fluids. Nicotinamide is a form of Vitamin B3 that may preserve and improve beta cell function. Nicotinamide is essential for growth and conversion of foods to energy. It has also been used in diabetes treatment and prevention.
- Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) – Pantothenic acid is involved in a number of biological reactions, including the production of energy, the catabolism of fatty acids and amino acids, the synthesis of fatty acids, phospholipids, sphingolipids, cholesterol and steroid hormones, and the synthesis of heme and the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. It also appears to be involved in the regulation of gene expression and in signal transduction.
- Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) – Pyridoxine, is an essential vitamin to aid in the formation of healthy red blood cells and supports more vital bodily functions than any other vitamin. It is needed to release energy from the food we eat. Since Vitamin B6 cannot be stored in the body, it must be obtained daily from either food or supplements.
- Vitamin B9 (folic acid) – Folic acid is crucial for proper brain function and plays an important role in mental and emotional health. It aids in the production of DNA and RNA, the body’s genetic material, and is especially important during periods of high growth, such as infancy, adolescence and pregnancy. Folic acid also works closely together with Vitamin B12 to regulate the formation of red blood cells and to help iron function properly in the body.
- Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) – Vitamin C is one of the most ubiquitous vitamins ever discovered. Besides playing a paramount role as an anti-oxidant and free radical scavenger, it has been suggested to be an effective antiviral agent by some very respected scientists. The primary function of vitamin C is to assist in the production of collagen, ubiquitous connective tissues that provide firm but flexible structure throughout the body.
- Vitamin D (calciferol) – Vitamin D is found in food, but also can be made in your body after exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun. The major biologic function of Vitamin D is to maintain normal blood levels of calcium and phosphorus. Calcium is a mineral in your body that makes up your bones and keeps them strong. Phosphorus is a mineral that helps maintain good teeth and bones and keep muscles and nerves working properly.
- Vitamin E (tocoferol) – Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin in eight forms that is an important antioxidant, and is often used in skin creams and lotions because it is believed to play a role in encouraging skin healing and reducing scarring after injuries such as burns. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant, protects your cells from oxidation, and neutralizes unstable free radicals, which can cause damage.
- Vitamin H (biotin) – Biotin is necessary for both metabolism and growth in humans, particularly with reference to production of fatty acids, antibodies, digestive enzymes, and in niacin (Vitamin B3) metabolism. Biotin is also essential for the breakdown of carbohydrates. It is integral to the conversion process which takes fatty acids and carbohydrates in the body and converts them into energy.
- Vitamin K – Vitamin K prevents calcification of arteries and other soft tissue – an adverse consequence of aging – while regulating the body’s calcium and promoting bone calcification. Vitamin K may play a role in the regulation of blood sugar. Japanese researchers have found that Vitamin K deficiency can have effects similar to diabetes.
- Vitamin P1 (rutin) – Rutin is a phenolic antioxidant and has been demonstrated to scavenge super-oxide radicals, and can chelate metal ions, such as ferrous cations. Rutin is also known to offer nutritional support to the circulatory systems including the capillaries in eyes. Rutin has proved to be especially helpful in preventing recurrent bleeding caused by weakened blood vessels, and has been used in treatment of hemorrhoids and varicose veins, helping to prevent blood vessel walls to become fragile.
- Choline – Choline is a member of the B-complex group of water soluble vitamins. It is an essential factor in the normal development and health of animals and is necessary for maximum growth of most animals. As a part of the molecular structure of phospholipids, it is concerned with the mobilization of fat in the body. In the absence of choline there is an abnormal accumulation of fat in the liver. Choline is essential for the formation of acetylcholine, a compound which makes possible the transmission of nerve impulses.
- Inositol – Inositol is required for proper formation of cell membranes. It affects nerve transmission and helps in transporting fats within the body. It is not a vitamin per se, but it works synergistically with many vitamins and nutrients. Inositol exists in all human cells, where it plays a pivotal role in cell proliferation and differentiation, both vital functions.