Here’s a remedy you won’t find in the first aid kit, but rather in your kitchen. HONEY! Something you may not know about honey is it has the ability to kill bacteria and heal wounds because it is very acidic. Although the idea of putting honey on a wound seems a bit strange, it has actually been used for treating infected wounds and other skin conditions for thousands of years.
Not Just Any Honey...Active Manuka Honey!
In particular, Manuka honey is an all-natural, organic honey from New Zealand and is used as an antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antiviral, antioxidant, and antifungal.
What Gives Manuka Honey Its Antibacterial Activity?
Methylglyoxal, or MG, is a compound found in higher concentrations in Manuka honey than other honeys. MG is thought to increase the antibacterial activity of Manuka honey.
The high sugar content of the honey produces an antibacterial molecule called hydrogen peroxide, which can be used as a disinfectant. The presence of both hydrogen peroxide and methylglyoxal work synergistically to make the honey even more effective as an antibacterial.
Kills Bad Bacteria
Active Manuka honey is highly effective against hard-to-kill, antibiotic-resistant “superbugs,” such as MRSA. Studies show Manuka honey has also been found effective against a wide range of bacteria including the very resistant stomach bacteria H. pylori., the wound-infecting bacteria staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, and streptococcus pyogenes, which causes a sore throat.
This powerful medicinal honey has also been shown to support digestive health and promote a healthy gut environment.
Studies are showing Manuka honey with high levels of MG could be very effective in helping relieve stomach ulcer symptoms and gastritis, and when applied topically, in assisting the natural healing of skin ulcers, wounds, burns, boils, and cracked skin by diffusing deep into the skin.
Studies also show the MG in honey helps make Manuka Honey excellent for relieving sore throats and oral hygiene. When a tender throat hits you, take a teaspoon of manuka honey off the spoon, or stirred into hot tea. Also, suck on a manuka honey lozenge to relieve soreness.
As a reminder, honey should not be fed to infants under one year old.
Bottom Line: Active Manuka Honey is promising as a natural treatment for many conditions. The higher the amount of MG, the greater the antibacterial strength of the honey which ensures the best results.
In Health and Happiness,
Kelly Harrington, MS, RDN
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for Healthy Goods