The manuka honey is one of the honey rich in therapeutic properties. And health benefits compounds, discovered by science only in recent decades. But known to the indigenous peoples of New Zealand. And Australia for thousands of years.
The origin of manuka honey
The manuka honey is single-flower honey. Pollen produced by the eponymous wild bush, Leptospermum an evergreen belonging to the family. Popular in remote areas of Australia and New Zealand. It is honey that inherits the therapeutic properties of the plant of origin: it is endowed with highly antibacterial compounds, antibiotics. And antifungals, of which the Maori have been used for thousands of years. And even more than Western researchers.
The precious components of manuka honey
The peculiarity of this dark-yellow honey, with a pasty consistency and an intense slightly bitter taste, is mainly linked to the high concentrations of hydrogen peroxide and the methylglyoxal enzyme, known as MGO. Both components possess elevated antimicrobial activity that is able to counteract bacterial strains resistant to antibiotics, without the side effects of a drug. To this is added an important immuno-stimulatory and repair property of epithelial tissues affected by infections.
In manuka honey, there are also many B vitamins and mineral salts essential for health, such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
The applications of this honey are varied. And pass from the internal use, as a garrison of the airways. And of the pharyngeal or oral cavity, to the topical one. As an antibacterial agent for the infected epidermis.
The antibiotic virtues of manuka honey have been identified with the UMF value (Unique Manuka Factor). Which quantifies the presence of the methylglyoxal enzyme. And other antibacterial compounds: the higher the UMF value, the greater the therapeutic value of honey.
The therapeutic properties of manuka honey have been almost exclusively validated in vitro. Although a recent Canadian study (1) and a second Portuguese study (2) report an antibacterial attitude both against Staphylococcus aureus (responsible for infections such as impetigo, erythema vesicular, boils, abscesses) than against Pseudomonas aeruginosa (whose infection affects the lungs, the central nervous system, eyes, ears, the gastrointestinal system). Furthermore, the bactericidal action of manuka honey extends to local treatments (wounds, ulcers or skin infections).
Here is a brief review of the benefits of consuming manuka honey:
For external topical use :
Promotes healing and skin healing of minor wounds, ulcerations, eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis and acne rosacea. According to the Cochrane Review, the treatment of burns or minor burns with sterile gauzes sprinkled with manuka honey accelerates skin repair and inhibits infection.
It can be used as a mouthwash for the disinfection of the oral cavity. And to prevent gingivitis and dental plaque, thanks to the presence of bactericidal agents and mineral salts.
For internal use:
By virtue of its antibacterial charge, manuka honey effectively combats diseases of the upper respiratory tract: colds, coughs, sore throats, nasal constipation;
Given the concentration of antioxidants, vitamins and mineral salts, it strengthens the immune system and fights free radicals.