1H and 13C NMR-based sugar profiling with chemometric analysis and antioxidant activity of herbhoneys and honeys




Herbhoneys, relatively new bee products, are expected to have interesting medicinal properties. However, there is still a lack of data concerning their composition and antioxidant properties. 1H and 13C NMR spectroscopy coupled with chemometric analysis (PCA and PLS-DA) and antioxidant assays (DPPH-ESR and ORAC-FL) were used to study 25 samples of Polish herbhoneys and honeys.


Antioxidant activity varied among the samples. The best properties were exhibited by cocoa and instant coffee herbhoneys. The contents of total polyphenols and total carotenoids in the studied samples were found to be 70–1340 mg GAE kg−1 and 0–28.05 mg kg−1 respectively. No significant differences between herbhoney and honey samples were found in their sugar profiles. The PCA of 13C NMR spectra of the samples in DMSO-d6 resulted in sample clustering due to sucrose content.


Herbhoneys have similar antioxidant properties to traditional honeys, being therefore of equal nutritional value. There was a noticeable influence of the extract concentration on the observed antioxidant effect. For samples with high antioxidant activity, polyphenols were responsible for the observed effect. Sample clustering due to sucrose content in the NMR-PCA study allowed effortless detection of adulteration. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry