Be honest, you know Manuka Honey is good for you, you are willing to pay way over the odds compared to other honey, but do you know why?
When new ‘superfoods’ are discovered, word tends to travel like wildfire until they become the most sought after product on the supermarket shelves. We nod along knowingly to our friends and families, praising the benefits of manuka honey and rejoice in the fact that Aldi or Lidl now stock a great, affordable range – it’s the must-have health food of the moment. No arguments here, but do we really know what makes manuka honey special?
Honey has always been revered for its healing properties, but manuka takes it to the next level. Produced in New Zealand by bees that pollinate the native manuka bush, manuka honey contains elevated levels of the antibacterial component, Methylglyoxal (MG), found in the nectar of the manuka flower. MG has powerful germ fighting capabilities, and gives manuka honey the antiseptic and antibiotic power that has earned it it’s ‘superfood’ status.
UMF – The unique Manuka Honey Factor
The potency of manuka honey is rated by manufacturers to allow the consumer to know just what they are getting for their money. This rating is called the UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) and the higher the UMF, the more powerful the honey. For manuka to contain enough properties to be considered beneficial to our health, it must have a minimum UMF of ten. Read the label!
What are the benefits?
While there is no doubt that manuka contains unique properties that are beneficial to our health, many of the claims made about it are, as yet, unproven.
It has been hailed as being able to help treat diabetes, cancer, gastric problems and much, much more. However, it is in healing wounds and burns on the skin that manuka honey really shines. This is due to the concentrated amounts of antibacterial properties found in the manuka plant.
Native New Zealanders have been using it as a topical application for wounds for centuries and now the medical profession is following suit, with many hospitals soaking bandages in a solution of medical-grade manuka honey to aid healing.
With plenty more testing on the effects of manuka honey in the future, there is little doubt that the list of benefits will increase, so get ahead of the curve and stock up today. If a spoonful of medicine is a spoonful of honey, who are we to complain?