A type of “honey” can be made from aguamiel. Aguamiel is heated in a pot until most of the moisture has evaporated and the liquid has thickened to the texture of honey and becomes dark amber in colour. For every 9 litres of aguamiel you will produce around only 1 litre of agave honey.
According to CINVESTAV (The Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute) in Mexico miel de agave has the following benefits,
- It contains vitamins A, B2, niacin, calcium, iron, magnesium and phosphorous (and may aid in the prevention of anaemia)
- It increases the absorption of calcium and magnesium (and may aid in preventing osteoporosis)
- It can inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria (E.coli, Listeria, Shigella, Salmonella)
- It can inhibit the growth of intestinal parasites
- Will assist in the prevention of dental caries when used as a sweetener as its oligofructose content does not provide a culture medium for the bacteria that create caries
- It contains soluble fibre that helps to eliminate dietary fats and toxins as well as help prevent diseases of the colon (and will aid in the treatment of diarrhoea)
- It can assist with the treatment of reflux and the treatment of Helicobacter pylori
- It is used to treat respiratory issues in children. It will help soothe an itchy throat as well as aid in supressing persistent coughing.
The liquid being described above is made by reducing the aguamiel. It IS NOT agave nectar. Agave nectar is made by steaming and juicing the whole agave piña in a manner similar to the first step of tequila production. This is a very different liquid to that produced when harvesting aguamiel. (see Post on Agave Syrup)
Ramirez (2000) in his work “Ignacio Torres Adalid y La Industria Pulquera” speaks of the medicinal qualities of agaván, a type of medicinal honey produced from agave syrup. It is a sweet, pleasant tasting tonic effective for the treatment of certain cases of cough, catarrh (1) and anemia. Its diuretic properties were also said to cure “acute and chronic diseases of the kidneys, the urethra and the bladder” (2). There is also uncontrolled clinical observational evidence for its use in the treatment of prostate issues.
- Excessive discharge or build-up of mucus in the nose or throat, associated with inflammation of the mucous membrane.
- The medicinal effect on the urinary system may be a result of the sugars present in agaván. These sugars may work to protect the urinary tract from bacterial adhesion as they are poorly absorbed in the GIT and are excreted through the urine which prevents bacteria from colonising the urinary tract and causing infection which in extreme cases can travel up to the bladder and kidneys, much like D-mannose (found in cranberries)