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Propolis vs Manuka Honey


Propolis VS Manuka Honey


 DISCLAIMER: This article has been written for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment

Honey bees have been favoring mankind for thousands of years with their amazing products like honey and propolis. Manuka honey is a most popular product which comes from New Zealand and Australia and is used for promoting health and wellbeing. It is obtained from the nectar of flowers of manuka trees originating in Australia and New Zealand. Well, honey is not the only product honey bees produce. Propolis is another product- a resin-like material that is a mixture of plant sap, bee wax, bees’ secretion, and enzymes. It is best known for its ability to fight microbes and is used to protect hives from diseases.

This article will take a closer look at bees propolis and manuka honey with potential benefits and uses for mankind.

Bee Propolis

Bee propolis is a mixture used to defend, seal and sterilize bee hives and protect the hive from infections and invaders. It has been used as a natural health product for centuries for treating a variety of health conditions. Modern science has unearthed its amazing properties which benefit human health.

Propolis was used in different cultures for medicinal purposes for instance, in Egypt, it was used to preserve mummies, Greeks used to treat abscesses and Assyrians used it for healing purposes.

The composition of propolis may vary according to the location and type of plant from which sap is collected. For example, the composition of propolis from Europe is different from Brazil which makes it difficult for researchers to agree on a general conclusion about its properties and potential benefits.

Health Benefits of Propolis

According to research, there are about 300 compounds found in propolis and most common of them are polyphenols. These polyphenols and flavonoids possess potent antioxidant properties. These compounds fight free radicals, prevent cellular damage and protect the body from various diseases.

Propolis has potent antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antifungal properties which help prevent microbial infections. However, research is limited in providing the mechanism of action but it is concluded that propolis provides protection from microbes.

 Speed up Wound Healing

Pinocembrin, a flavonoid with powerful antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties is found in propolis which helps wound healing. The study revealed that propolis has potential to stimulate new cell growth which helps burns and wounds heal faster. Another study showed that topical application of propolis extract works more efficiently than a steroid cream and plays a great role in the reduction of mast cells.

Treat Cold sores and Genital Herpes

Studies showed that creams and ointments with added propolis extract help treat cold sores and sores resulting from genital herpes. A study showed that propolis when applied to the skin 3 times a day, it helped treat cold sores more effectively than any other treatment.

May Prevent cancer

In addition to antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects, propolis also possesses anticancer abilities. It prevents the multiplication and spreading of cancer and blocks cell signaling pathways involved in the development of cancer.

A study revealed that consuming propolis helps treat and reduce the risk of breast cancer.

Support Oral Health

Propolis has strong antibacterial properties which make it an effective remedy to promote oral hygiene. It prevents oral infections, restricts the development of calcium phosphate, and reduces the risk of dental plaques. According to a study of people suffering from periodontitis, consuming propolis helped decrease the number of bacteria in their saliva.

Alleviate Inflammation

Compounds in propolis contain anti-inflammatory properties which help treat inflammatory conditions including arthritis. Animal studies concluded that propolis helps relieve inflammation and regulate the production of inflammatory mediators like prostaglandins.

May Help Treat Allergies

Propolis has long been used as a natural remedy to treat certain types of allergies. According to a study published in the journal of Oxidative Medicine and Cellular longevity, propolis possesses antiallergy properties which help treat skin conditions, allergic rhinitis, asthma, and the common cold.

Help Manage Diabetes

Animal studies showed that propolis consumption is associated with reduced blood sugar levels and lowered risk of diabetes. However, more studies are needed to evaluate the antidiabetic effects in humans.

Safety and Risks

Propolis is considered safe to use and no serious side effects are reported. However, people having sensitivity to honey or bees may get some allergic reactions like eczema-like skin breakouts, itching, and redness.

Always take the advice of your doctor before adding propolis to your daily routine if you are suffering from asthma or bleeding disorders.

Manuka Honey

Manuka honey is native to Australia and New Zealand and produced by bees that pollinate the flowers of the manuka bush known as Leptospermum scoparium. It contains methylglyoxal as a bioactive compound that possesses strong antibacterial properties and differs from traditional honey.

In various cultures and civilizations, manuka honey is used to promote wound healing, treat sore throat, prevent tooth decay and boost digestive health.

Health Benefits of manuka Honey

Manuka honey is best known for its antibacterial effects which help prevent and treat the infection.

Assist Wound healing

Native to Australia and New Zealand, manuka honey is an FDA-approved remedy for wound healing. When applied to a wound, it keeps the wound moist and acts as a protective barrier preventing infections from developing in the wound. Studies showed that manuka honey speed up wound healing stimulates regeneration of tissues, and reduces pain associated with burns.

Improve Oral Health

According to a report, half the population in America experiences periodontal diseases. Studies showed that manuka honey restricts the growth of harmful oral bacteria like P.gingivalis and A. actinomycetemcomitans.

Manuka honey is also beneficial in providing relief from sore throat due to its antibacterial and antiviral properties. In addition to attacking harmful bacteria, manuka honey also shields the throat lining and provides soothing effects.

A study showed that consumption of manuka honey resulted in a significant decrease in streptococcus mutans, bacteria responsible for sore throat.

Relieve Digestive Problems

A stomach ulcer is the most commonly occurring digestive complaint affecting millions of people worldwide. Manuka honey is known to have positive effects in reducing gastric ulcers, as it restricts the growth of H. pylori. 

In addition, it helps relieve other digestive conditions like diarrhea, constipation, abdominal discomfort, and irregular bowel movements.

Help Treat Acne

Acne is a skin condition resulting from hormonal changes, stress, poor diet, or bacterial infections. Due to its antimicrobial activities, manuka honey when applied with a low PH product, helps reduce inflammation and pain associated with acne.

Possible Risks

Manuka honey is usually considered safe to use for humans, however, people who suffer from a bee or honey allergy may get allergic reactions from oral administration or topical application.

Honey contains high quantities of sugar and may raise blood sugar levels in diabetic patients.

Bottom Line

Propolis and honey are the unique products bees provide for the well-being of mankind. Propolis is a resin-like material that possesses antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties which help treat cold sores, relieve inflammation, improve oral health and prevent allergies, cancer, and diabetes. Manuka honey is a unique type of honey with potent antibacterial properties which make it an effective remedy for healing wounds and burns, relieving sore throat, and promoting digestive health.

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