As the name suggests, Manuka honey is extracted from the flowers of the Manuka tree. The tree grows in Australia and New Zealand and is also known as the tea tree. The two trees are different species of the myrtle family and share some common characteristics, including being rich in essential oils. Both tea trees are used as a source of essential oils to produce topical formulations for skin and wound care. The flowers of both trees produce nectar and pollen, which the bees collect. For honey to be considered Manuka honey, at least 70% of the pollen in the honey must come from Manuka flowers.
Manuka honey is highly valued in the ancient traditions of the Maori people of New Zealand and is considered a taunga or "treasure" due to its versatility. It is now an important source of income for the New Zealand economy, with an annual export value of approximately over US$500 million. Manuka honey seems to have become a treasure all over the world.
Manuka honey is usually easy to distinguish from other types of honey, with experts mainly distinguishing it by thickness, color and taste. Real Manuka honey is very viscous. Some types of manuka honey are very viscous, more like jam than syrup. Manuka honey is also dark brown in color. This unique color is often used as a quick and easy way to identify Manuka honey.
While Manuka honey can be used as a natural sweetener, there are more economical alternatives available for this purpose. Instead, use Manuka honey because of its many health benefits. Its sweet taste makes it easy to enjoy its healing properties.
What makes Manuka honey special is that it contains some unique compounds not found in other types of honey. An example is methylglyoxal or MGO. The complex contains DHA, which is extremely high in Manuka flowers. Manuka honey also contains several delicious compounds from the manuka flower, which give it an earthy, herbaceous taste and aroma. Manuka honey also contains special proteins and colloids that give it a unique texture. 1
Most research seeking to uncover the secrets of Manuka honey has focused on its MGO content. For example, MGO is believed to be the main compound that gives manuka honey its topical efficacy in treating wounds, burns and sores. Studies have shown that the high levels of MGO in Manuka honey have an antimicrobial effect on certain harmful bacteria that are particularly resistant to antibiotics. other unique.
Earning the Manuka Honey designation requires adherence to strict production standards. Honey labeled "New Zealand Manuka Honey" has been carefully tested and confirmed to be the product of the Manuka flower. Shoppers can clearly identify pure, potent Manuka honey by looking for the Premium Manuka Honey (UMF) label on the package. This rating is a special indicator used to measure the amount of methylglyoxal (MGO) and other beneficial compounds such as fine alkali and dihydroxyacetone (DHA) in honey to determine the quality and purity of honey. If you are looking for the health benefits of manuka honey, it should have a UMF rating of at least 10.6
Manuka honey has many different uses due to its many healing properties. This article describes some of the most common uses.
1. Manuka honey is good for digestive health
Perhaps the most widespread use of manuka honey is to improve overall health. The second is to support digestive health. There is some preliminary research to support this use. First, Manuka honey helps promote the health of the lining of your digestive tract, from your mouth to your colon. 8-12 Specifically, clinical studies have shown that manuka honey can reduce the pain of stomatitis caused by chemotherapy or radiation for head and neck cancer. 11, 12 Putting a tablespoon of Manuka honey in your mouth for at least a minute, twice a day, works wonders.
In addition to soothing inflammation and supporting the lining of the mouth, throat and intestines, manuka honey's antimicrobial properties are also great for maintaining a healthy digestive system. Manuka Honey inhibits the growth of bad bacteria while providing natural prebiotics that boost the production of good bacteria. As a prebiotic, Manuka honey contains a higher proportion of oligosaccharides (5-10%) than other types of honey. 1 These indigestible carbohydrates encourage the growth of beneficial gut bacteria that are essential for a healthy digestive system. This helps relieve common minor digestive issues such as gas, bloating, indigestion and irregular bowel movements. Mostly, a tablespoon or two of manuka honey is taken daily for these purposes.
2. Wound Healing Benefits of Manuka Honey
Another major use of Manuka honey is to promote healthy skin and wound healing. It helps fight bacteria that can prolong healing and provides beneficial proteins and other compounds that promote tissue repair. Manuka honey can be used on minor burns or scrapes, but never on deeper wounds. It should be applied to superficial wounds to prevent scarring and should be continued even after new scarring has formed until fully healed. Its healing properties and moisturizing benefits help speed up the healing process, prevent scarring and maintain skin elasticity.
3. Manuka honey benefits skin health
The healing properties of Manuka honey for minor cuts and scrapes are also great for maintaining healthy skin. For example, applying manuka honey to your face may help fight acne-causing infections and bacteria. It also provides plenty of moisture to keep skin supple and youthful. Another great benefit of manuka honey for the skin is that it raises the pH to an optimal level, which prevents dryness, redness and breakouts. The low levels of hydrogen peroxide and antioxidants in manuka honey may help fade dark acne scars from the past. Use this easy homemade mask recipe below twice a week to help even out your complexion and prevent breakouts.
Manuka Honey Mask Recipe
1 teaspoon Manuka honey
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon rose water
How to prepare:
The three ingredients are combined in a small bowl or jar.
Smooth the mixture evenly over skin with clean hands or a cotton pad.
Leave the mask on for at least 20 minutes. The active ingredients will continue to provide you with benefits for up to an hour.
Rinse face with warm water and pat skin dry.
4. Manuka honey is good for sore throats and coughs
The healing properties of Manuka honey are often used as a home remedy to relieve coughs and sore throats. There is clinical evidence to support the use of honey for these purposes. For example, in a clinical trial involving 300 children aged 1 to 5 years, honey treatment reduced the frequency and severity of nocturnal coughing and improved sleep in both children and parents. 13Honey has well-known benefits and is recommended by many medical authorities for the relief of sore throats or coughs in adults and children (as young as 1 year). Examples of such organizations include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US and the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) in the UK.
Homemade Manuka Honey Recipe
two glasses of water
8 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
cup of manuka honey
How to prepare:
Put water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
Remove boiling water from heat, add thyme and let steep for at least 10 minutes.
Add the manuka honey and stir until completely dissolved.
Pour the mixture into an airtight glass container and strain if desired.
This cough syrup will keep for at least three weeks if refrigerated, and just a scoop can be very helpful when you have a sore throat.
5. Benefits of moisturizing the nose and sinuses
Manuka honey can also be added to nasal and sinus rinses. Clinical studies have shown promising results in patients with chronic congestion and cystic fibrosis. 14,15 In the latter case, the function of the hairs, such as the cilia that move mucus up and out of the respiratory tract, is reduced.
The most practical way to make a manuka honey nasal and sinus rinse is with a neti pot, which is a small container used to clear nasal waste or mucus. Neti pots have become a popular self-care remedy for nasal congestion. Generally, it can be used once a day, but if the congestion is serious, it is recommended to use it twice a day, no more than 7-10 days.
How to Prepare Manuka Honey Lotion in a Neti Pot
Add 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda to 8 ounces of chilled distilled, sterilized, or boiled water. Do not use tap water.
Add 1 tablespoon of Manuka Honey and stir until completely dissolved in solution.
Most neti pots come with instructions for use. Here are the basics of using it:
Tilt your head about a 45-degree angle above your pelvis.
Follow the directions on the box when using the neti pot.
Place the nozzle in the upper nostril and slowly pour the saline solution into this nostril, pour the saline solution into one nostril and out the other nostril. The solution will pass through the nose and out through the other nostril.
If any solution gets in your throat, spit it out.
Blow out the remaining solution in your nose, then refill the neti pot and repeat the process from the other nostril.
Be sure to wash, rinse and dry your neti pot thoroughly after each use.
If your neti pot is metal-free, microwave it occasionally to ensure pathogens don't build up in it.