Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768ffcd9cc-2bgxn Total loading time: 0.245 Render date: 2022-11-29T21:55:19.061Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": false, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

Honey revisited: a reappraisal of honey in pre-industrial diets

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2007

Karen A. Allsop
Affiliation:
Human Nutrition Unit, Department of Biochemistry, University of Sydney, NSW, Australia
Janette Brand Miller
Affiliation:
Human Nutrition Unit, Department of Biochemistry, University of Sydney, NSW, Australia
Rights & Permissions[Opens in a new window]

Abstract

HTML view is not available for this content. However, as you have access to this content, a full PDF is available via the ‘Save PDF’ action button.

In pre-industrial times, honey was the main source of concentrated sweetness in the diets of many peoples. There are no precise figures for per capita consumption during most periods in history because honey was part of either a hunter-gatherer or subsistence economy. Until now, historians and food writers have proposed that it was a scarce commodity available only to a wealthy few. We do know, however, that in a cash economy honey was sold in large units (gallons and even barrels) and it was present in such abundance that mead, made from honey, was a common alcoholic drink. A reappraisal of the evidence from the Stone Age, Antiquity, the Middle Ages and early Modern times suggests that ordinary people ate much larger quantities of honey than has previously been acknowledged. Intakes at various times during history may well have rivalled our current consumption of refined sugar. There are implications therefore for the role of sugar in modern diets. Refined sugar may not have displaced more nutrient-rich items from our present-day diets but only the nutritionally comparable food, honey.

Type
Pre-industrial
Copyright
Copyright © The Nutrition Society 1996

References

REFERENCES

Baghurst, K. I., Recor, S. J., Syrette, J. A., Crawford, D. A. & Baghurst, P. A. (1989). Intakes and sources of a range of dietary sugars in various Australian populations. Medical Journal of Australia 151, 512517.Google ScholarPubMed
Best, M. R. (1986). Gervase Markham: The English Housewife (first published c. 1600). Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press.Google Scholar
Cosman, M. P. (1976). Fabulous Feasts - Medieval Cookery and Ceremony. New York: George Braziller.Google Scholar
Crane, E. (1975). Honey: A Comprehensive Survey. London: Heinemann.Google Scholar
Crane, E. (1980). A Book of Honey. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Crane, E. (1983). The Archaeology of Beekeeping. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Darby, H. C. (1952). The Domesday Geography of Eastern England. London: The Syndics of the Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Darby, W. J., Ghalioungui, P. & Grivetti, L. (1977). Food. The Gift of Osiris. London: Academic Press.Google Scholar
Department of Health (1989). Dietary Sugars and Human Disease. Report on Health and Social Subjects no. 37. London: H.M. Stationery Office.Google Scholar
Free, J. B. (1982). Bees and Mankind. Boston: George Allen and Unwin.Google Scholar
Glinsmann, W. H., Irausquin, H. & Park, Y. (1986). Evaluation of Health Aspects of Sugars Contained in Carbohydrate Sweeteners. Report of the Sugars Task Force 1986. Washington, DC: US Food and Drug Administration.Google ScholarPubMed
Hartley, D. (1975). Food in England. London: Macdonald and Jane's.Google Scholar
Holland, B., Welch, A. A., Unwin, I. D., Buss, D. H., Paul, A. A. & Southgate, D. A. T. (1991). McCance and Widdowson's The Composition of Foods. Cambridge: Royal Society of Chemistry and Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.Google Scholar
Hughes, A. (1981). The Diary of a Farmer's Wife, 1796–1797. London: Allen Lane, Penguin Books.Google Scholar
Low, T. (1989). Bush Tucker - Australia's Wild Food Harvest. Sydney: Angus and Robertson.Google Scholar
McGee, H. (1984). On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen. London: Harper Collins.Google Scholar
Meehan, B. (1982). Shell Bed to Shell Midden. Canberra: Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies.Google Scholar
Mertes, K. (1988). The English Noble Household 1250–1600 Good Governance and Politic Rule. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar
Naim, M. & Kare, M. R. (1982). The nutritional significance of sweetness. In Nutritive Sweeteners, pp. 171190 [Birch, G. G. and Parker, K. J., editors]. London: Applied Science Publishers.Google Scholar
Passmore, R. & Eastwood, M. A. (1986). Human Nutrition and Dietetics. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.Google Scholar
Ransome, H. M. (1937). The Sacred Bee- In Ancient Times and Folklore. London: George Allen and Unwin.Google Scholar
Rogers, J. E. T. (1866). A History of Agriculture and Prices in England. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
Rogers, J. E. T. (1882). A History of Agriculture and Prices in England. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
Rogers, J. E. T. (1887). A History of Agriculture and Prices in England. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
Sato, M., Hiji, Y., Ito, H. & Imoto, T. (1977). Sweet taste sensitivity in Japanese macaques. In The Chemical Senses and Nutrition, pp. 332336 [Kare, M. R. and Maller, O., editors]. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
Style, S. (1992). Honey: From Hive to Honeypot. London: Pavilion.Google Scholar
Tannahill, R. (1975). Food in History. St Albans: Paladin.Google Scholar
Turnbull, C. M. (1963). The importance of flux in two hunting societies. In Man the Hunter, part 3, chapter 15, pp. 132137 [Lee, R. B. and DeVore, I., editors]. New York: Aldine de Gruyter.Google Scholar
Vellard, J. (1939). Une Civilisation du Miel, les Indiens Guayakis du Paraguay. Paris: Librairie Gallimond.Google Scholar
Webb, J. (1854, 1855). A Roll of the Household Expenses of Richard de Swinfield, Bishop of Hereford, During Part of the Years 1289 and 1290. London: Camden Society Series.Google Scholar
Wilson, C. A. (1973). Food and Drink in Britain: From the Stone Age to Recent Times. London: Constable.Google Scholar
Woodburn, J. (1963). An introduction to Hazda ecology. In Man the Hunter, pp. 4955 [Lee, R. B. and DeVore, I., editors]. New York: Aldine de Gruyter.Google Scholar
You have Access
42
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Honey revisited: a reappraisal of honey in pre-industrial diets
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Honey revisited: a reappraisal of honey in pre-industrial diets
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Honey revisited: a reappraisal of honey in pre-industrial diets
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *