24 Foods You Didn’t Know Could Be Harmful

By Beck Robertson / Nutrition / March 3rd, 2019

12. Raw Honey

Raw Honey

Honey is thought of as super-healthy and research has discovered many benefits associated with regular consumption – but not everyone is aware that there can be some downsides to this sweet snack.

Most honeys on the shelf typically go through a filtration process, which removes particles and pollen grains, but raw honey can wind up with some pollen grains still remaining – and researchers have found this can cause allergic reactions in certain people, particularly hay fever sufferers.

There’s another risk to consuming raw honey – a study conducted by the Turkish Journal of Veterinary and Animal Sciences found it can contain the bacteria Clostridium botulinum, which causes intestinal botulism. If you contract intestinal botulism, you could experience serious lethargy and muscle weakness, along with difficulty swallowing and double vision, and for some, the condition can even be fatal.

Though the risk of contracting intestinal botulism from raw honey is rare, it can potentially affect anyone – and one study published in the British Medical Journal revealed a direct link between honey ingestion and a serious case of infant botulism. To be on the safe side, it’s best not to feed raw honey to children and choose honeys that have been filtered if you suffer from hay fever, or have allergies to pollen.


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