by Angela Ysseldyk, Nutritionist and Beekeeper's Daughter
The question of how much bee pollen to take daily is one of the most common questions I get here on Bee Pollen Buzz. Fortunately, I've got years of experience in starting people out on this amazing superfood so you've come to the right place for advice.
Before we consider how much bee pollen to take, there are several things to consider before you begin taking it daily.
First of all, if you've already purchased a supplement, were you extremely careful in selecting the source and brand of the bee pollen?
If not, you need to read my article on what to look for in choosing your bee pollen supplement.
Assuming you're happy with your selection and have no worries about the source, you should really educate yourself on the potential side effects of bee pollen.
Side effects are extremely rare when consuming bee pollen. If you're worried about experiencing side effects, I highly recommend you read this article where I address the truth of this issue.
Now, after reading the suggested articles, you've educated yourself on what to look out for and you've probably purchased a good quality bee pollen supplement.
But the question of how much bee pollen to take each day still remains.
Before I answer that, there is one last thing you should do. You need to take the tolerance test to be 100% sure that you're not going to have an allergic reaction to bee pollen granules. This will ensure that you're immune system isn't going to 'over react' to the thousands of different pollens you're now ingesting. Like I said earlier, reactions are extremely rare but you should be cautious just in case.
Many different dosages are recommended for bee pollen. I've seen people get results on as little as 1 tablet a day. I've also seen people take several heaping tablespoons a day.
Bee pollen is amazingly safe to consume. This makes sense as it is really a food, albeit an extremely nutrient dense food. So ultimately, you need to experiment with the dosage that works for you.
Personally, I take 1 or 2 heaping tablespoons a day and so does my husband. We seem to get all of the benefits of this wonderful food from that small amount.
For more specific recommendations on how much bee pollen to take for conditions such as allergies or to boost energy, click here. There are also some specific recommendations for athletes as well as to obtain outstanding health and longevity.
In my parents honey shop, we've heard testimonials of people eating up to several cups of raw bee pollen a day.
One of our customers lived on nothing but bee pollen and watermelon for quite some time. (I don't recommend trying that)
A professor from France is reported as saying that a human could survive on bee pollen alone. In fact, he suggested thirty six grams per day would be sufficient for survival.
36 grams would be about 5 heaping teaspoons of raw granules a day, which really isn't much considering that the average North American consumes about that much sugar a day between their cola's and sugar laden breakfast cereals. One can of Coke is over 40 grams of sugar. No wonder diabetes is epidemic in the Western World.
It's a bit more difficult for me to recommend how much bee pollen to take for those of you taking capsules or tablets as the amount of bee pollen actually in these products varies from brand to brand.
The most common dosage on the market for bee pollen capsules is 500 mg. Keeping in mind that one teaspoon of raw bee pollen granules is about 5000 mg's, one capsule of the average bee pollen supplement would provide you with about 1/10th of a basic recommended dose.
The supplement manufacturer's will argue that taking three 500 mg capsules a day is sufficient and will provide a health benefit to most people.
It has been my experience that you need to take larger quantities for therapeutic purposes such as allergies but for general health, this is likely sufficient.
At the end of the day, you need to determine what works best for you. Try taking the capsules for a month and be aware of how you feel. Then try upping your dose either by taking more capsules or taking a teaspoon or two of the raw granules. Do you feel any better?
Your body will tell you what dose you need. If you are extremely healthy and eat a diet filled with whole, organic foods and adequate protein, fiber and vegetables, you likely need less bee pollen than the person that doesn't eat like you.
But if you don't eat regularly or don't eat only organic, whole foods and don't consume many supplements to help make up the deficiencies in your diet, you'll likely respond better to higher doses of pollen.
Experiment. We're all unique with very unique metabolisms. Let your body do the talking! It won't lie to you...ever.