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Royal Jelly
Overview
Royal jelly is a honey bee secretion that is used in the nutrition of larvae and adult queens. It is secreted from the glands in the hypopharynx of worker bees, and fed to all larvae in the colony. When worker bees decide to make a new queen, either because the old one is weakening, or was killed, they choose several small larvae and feed them with copious amounts of royal jelly in specially constructed queen cells. This type of feeding triggers the development of queen morphology, including the fully developed ovaries needed to lay eggs.

Royal jelly is secreted from the glands in the heads of worker bees, and is fed to all bee larvae, whether they are destined to become drones (males), workers (sterile females), or queens (fertile females). After three days, the drone and worker larvae are no longer fed with royal jelly, but queen larvae continue to be fed this special substance throughout their development. It is harvested by humans by stimulating colonies with movable frame hives to produce queen bees. Royal jelly is collected from each individual queen cell (honeycomb) when the queen larvae are about four days old. It is collected from queen cells because these are the only cells in which large amounts are deposited; when royal jelly is fed to worker larvae, it is fed directly to them, and they consume it as it is produced, while the cells of queen larvae are "stocked" with royal jelly much faster than the larvae can consume it. Therefore, only in queen cells is the harvest of royal jelly practical. A well-managed hive during a season of 5–6 months can produce approximately 500 g of royal jelly. Since the product is perishable, producers must have immediate access to proper cold storage (e.g., a household refrigerator or freezer) in which the royal jelly is stored until it is sold or conveyed to a collection centre. Sometimes honey or beeswax are added to the royal jelly, which is thought to aid its preservation.

Royal jelly is collected and sold as a dietary supplement for humans, claiming various health benefits because of components such as B-complex vitamins such as pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine). The overall composition of royal jelly is 67% water, 12.5% crude protein, including small amounts of many different amino acids, and 11% simple sugars (monosaccharides), also including a relatively high amount (5%) of fatty acids. It also contains many trace minerals, some enzymes, antibacterial and antibiotic components, and trace amounts of vitamin C, but none of the fat-soluble vitamins, A, D, E and K.

What is Royal Jelly?
Royal jelly is a milky secretion produced by worker honey bees. It typically contains about 60% to 70% water, 12% to 15% proteins, 10% to 16% sugar, 3% to 6% fats, and 2% to 3% vitamins, salts, and amino acids. Its composition varies depending on geography and climate. This product gets its name from the fact that bees use it for the development and nurturing of queen bees. Some people use royal jelly as medicine. Don’t confuse royal jelly with bee pollen or bee venom.

Royal jelly is used for asthma, hay fever, liver disease, pancreatitis, sleep troubles (insomnia), premenstrual syndrome (PMS), stomach ulcers, kidney disease, bone fractures, skin disorders, and high cholesterol. It is also used as a general health tonic, for fighting the effects of aging, and for boosting the immune system.

Some people apply royal jelly directly to the skin as a tonic or to the scalp to encourage hair growth.

Benefits & Uses
Royal jelly is a secretion from honey bees that is used to deliver nutrition to larvae and adult queen bees. Research has found that royal jelly carries several health benefits for humans.

Graves Disease
Royal jelly is believed to be potentially beneficial to patients with Graves' disease.

Brain Health
One study found that royal jelly has the ability to stimulate the growth of neural stem cells and glial cells in the brain, which may mean that it can help prevent diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

Cholesterol
Studies have found that royal jelly has the ability to lower total serum cholesterol levels in people with moderately elevated cholesterol levels.

Anti-Aging
It is believed to have anti-aging properties, improving collagen production in skin and overall youthfulness.

Anti-Inflammatory
It has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties when ingested and when applied topically.

Wound Healing
Research has found that royal jelly has wound healing properties when applied topically to the skin.

Antibiotic
Royal jelly contains an antibiotic called 10-Hydroxy-Dgr2-decenoic acid that is effective against many bacteria.

Cancer Research in Japan suggests that royal jelly has strong anti-cancer properties. Croatian researchers found that royal jelly injected into mice at the same time that they were injected with cancer cells significantly reduced the spread of cancer.

Fertility
Royal jelly is believed to aid in fertility by improving the quality of a woman's eggs and promoting overall youthfulness of her reproductive organs and body.

PMS
Many women find that royal jelly relieves many of the symptoms of PMS.
Before you decide to take royal jelly, be aware that people with allergies to bees or honey may have serious allergic reactions to it.

Doses
The appropriate dose of royal jelly depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions.

Best Form For Human Consumption:
Royal jelly is available in liquid form (usually in glass vials), tablets, and capsules.

Side Effects
Royal jelly is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when used short-term. It can cause serious allergic reactions including asthma, swelling of the throat, and death. Rarely, it might cause the colon to bleed, accompanied by stomach pain and bloody diarrhea.
There isn't enough information to know if royal jelly is safe when applied directly to the skin. It has caused inflammation and allergic rash when applied to the scalp.

Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of royal jelly during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Asthma or allergies: Don’t use royal jelly if you have asthma or allergies. It could cause some serious reactions, even death.
Inflamed skin (dermatitis): Royal jelly might make dermatitis worse.

Interaction:
Warfarin (Coumadin) interacts with ROYAL JELLY
Royal jelly might increase the effects of warfarin (Coumadin). Taking royal jelly with warfarin (Coumadin) might result in an increased chance of bruising or bleeding.

References & Research
arw Hanza SM, Aod El-Wahab SM, Shehata MM, Mohamed TR. Investigation of royal jelly Part I. Vitamin content of royal jelly and effect on hepatic vitamin levels in male and female rats. Egypt J Pharm Sci 1979;20:365–73.
arw Hove Sr, Dimick PS, Benton AW. Composition of freshly harvested and commercial royal jelly. J Apic Res 1985;24:52–61.
arw Bariliak IR, Berdyshev GD, Dugan AM. The antimutagenic action of apiculture products. Tsitol Genet 1996;30(6):48–55 [in Russian].
arw Vittek J. Effect of royal jelly on serum lipids in experimental animals and humans with atherosclerosis. Experientia 1995;51:927–35 [review].
arw Sver L, Orsolic N, Tadic Z, et al. A royal jelly as a new potential immunomodulator in rats and mice. Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis 1996;19:31–8.
arw Fujii A, Kobayashi S, Kuboyama N, et al. Augmentation of wound healing by royal jelly (RJ) in streptozotocin-diabetic rats. Jpn J Pharmacol 1990;53:331–7.
arw Vittek J. Effect of royal jelly on serum lipids in experimental animals and humans with atherosclerosis. Experientia 1995;51:927–35 [review].
arw Hammerl H, Pichler O. Zur therapie mit apifortyl. Medsche Klin 1960;45:2015–21 [in German].
arw Madar J, Maly E, Neubauer E, Moscovic F. Einfluss des bienenmuttervreies (gelee royale) auf den cholesterol-spiegel auf die toallipide im serum und auf die fibrinolitische aktivitat des plasmas der an atherosklerose leidenden alteren Menschen. Z Altersforsch 1965;18:103–8 [in German].
arw Sitar J, Cernochova Z. Treatment of angina pectoris with Vita-Apinol Spofa. Some metabolic effects of the drug. Vnitr Lek 1967;14:1798–805.
arw Hammerl H, Pichler O. Vorlaufiger bericht uber die behandlung auf den alternden Menschen unter besonderer berucksichtigung des cholesterin-stoffwechsels. In J Prohyl Med Soc Hyg 1958;2:69–71 [in German].
arw Pejcev P, Chadzijev V, Mikiforov N, et al. Results of the combined use of some bee products, honey, royal jelly and pollen to geriatric patients. Folia Med Plovdiv 1966;8:329–33.
arw Kaczor M, Koltec A, Matuszewski J. The effect of royal jelly on blood lipids in atheromatic patients. Polski Tygod Lek 1962;17:140–4.
arw Vittek J. Effect of royal jelly on serum lipids in experimental animals and humans with atherosclerosis. Experientia 1995;51:927–35 [review].
arw Kristoffersen K, Thomsen BW, Schacke E, Wagner HH. Use of natural medicines in women referred to specialists. Ugeskr Laeger 1997;159:294–6 [in Danish].
arw Szanto E, Gruber D, Sator M, et al. Placebo-controlled study of melbrosia in treatment of climacteric symptoms. Wien Med Wochenschr 1994;144:130–3 [in German].
arw Einer-Jensen N, Zhao J, Andersen KP, Kristoffersen K. Cimicifuga and Melbrosia lack oestrogenic effects in mice and rats. Maturitas 1996;25:149–53.
arw Thien FCK, Leung R, Baldo BA, et al. Asthma and anaphylaxis induced by royal jelly. Clin Exp Allergy 1996;26:216–22.
arw Leung R, Ho A, Chan J, et al. Royal jelly consumption and hypersensitivity in the community. Clin Exp Allergy 1997;27:333–6.
arw Yonei Y, Shibagaki K, Tsukada N, et al. Case report: haemorrhagic colitis associated with royal jelly intake. J Gastroenterol Hepatol 1997;12:495–9.
arw Takahashi M, Matsuo I, Ohkido M. Contact dermatitis due to honeybee royal jelly. Contact Dermatitis 1983;9:452–5.