Bishnu Prasad Neupane
Pokhara University, Nepal
Posters & Accepted Abstracts: J Food Process Technol
The Gurung tribal people of Nepal have been collecting wild honey from Himalayan cliffs (2500-4000 m asl) and this wild honey is believed to promote health of general well-being and hence used to treat a variety of ailments for centuries. However, studies reported elsewhere pinpoint that wild honey is poisonous. This poisoning is well known from the ancient time. The toxicity of wild honey is supposed to cause due to the presence of grayanotoxin which is found on the leaves, nectar and pollen of Rhododendron species. Ingestion of honey obtained from these plants resulted in mad-honey intoxication. This may cause serious life-threatening effects such as bradycardia, complete atrioventricular block, atrial fibrillation or convulsion. Twenty two honey samples were collected from Himalayan regions of Nepal and were studied for its antioxidant activity and pollen analysis to identify the poisonous plant. The result showed that all tested honey has significant antioxidant activities. Pollen analysis showed that the collected honey was heavily contaminated with Rhododendron species pollen. Analysis of grayanotoxin is not readily available and pollen analysis offers a practical way of detection of honey.
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