Great news for Australian and New Zealand beekeepers! For generations, naturopaths have been promoting the power of natural Manuka honey as an antiseptic.
Due to its many years and long isolation from the rest of the world, as well as its specific island biogeography, New Zealand has an incredibly rich flora and fauna. About 80% of the world’s flora exists in New Zealand alone! Manuka tree, Leptospermum scoparum, also belongs to this fantastic family. It blooms in summer, and the intense scent its beautiful, red-pink bee flowers adore.
Since ancient times, Maori natives have used Manuka as a cure. One of the main healthy ingredients that make this honey so special, and its price is methylglyoxal (MGO), a substance with a strong antibacterial effect, which is a side effect of honey production.
Manuka honey is the honey with the most powerful anti-inflammatory action. It has shown surprising results in clinical trials and is used, among other things, in the treatment of skin ulcers and third-degree burns. It is also great for treating respiratory problems.
For thousands of years, honey has been known for its antibacterial and healing effects, naturally maintaining the health and immunity of the whole organism. However, some types of honey obtained from unique plants are more effective than others, and honey derived from manuka plants from New Zealand is one of those.
Now researchers and scientists at the University of Southampton have found even heavily diluted Manuka honey is useful in stopping the growth of bacterial biofilms. Those bacteria are the weak and usually very resilient layer of microbes that accrete and adhere to surfaces, including industrial quality plastic used in medical devices.
Manuka honey is excellent for improving stomach health. It can help reduce inflammation caused by a digestive system disorder and also relieve discomfort and bloating in the stomach. Manuka honey contains a natural probiotic, which is especially crucial for the health of the stomach as it supplies it with good bacteria.
Pure Manuka honey is ideal for boosting energy levels, especially at times when you feel exhausted and tired. The high concentration of nutrients found in this honey is the “fuel” for your strength if you want to carry out daily activities without any problems.
Honey acts as a natural moisturizer to increase its hydration, absorbing moisture directly from the air, and pulling it out and releasing it to the skin itself.
According to DearJane Medical, Manuka honey is monofloral honey from the nectar of the Manuka tree, which only grows in Australian and New Zealand. For the first time, Manuka honey has been confirmed as having antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
In the future, Australian and New Zealand Manuka beekeepers may find their product being used in patients fitted with medical devices carrying a high risk of infection such as urinary catheters, according to the online Journal of Clinical Pathology. Each year, upwards of 100 million catheters are sold worldwide, with one in four hospital patients being fitted with one. Frequently, however, long-term catheter use comes with complications such as inflammation and infections.
The Study and Data
Associate Professor Bashir Lwaleed at the University of Southampton, led the study to confirm that has been able to demonstrate where diluted Manuka honey can be a useful substance for reducing biofilm on indwelling plastic model items such as urine catheters. Urine catheter infection can account for a significant number of hospitals attained infections. It is an area of clinical work that may require addressing further. Professor Lwaleed hopes these findings may offer a way of preventing these infections. Patients may perhaps also benefit from Manuka honey anti-inflammatory properties that are found to be stronger in dark honey like Manuka, and this antibacterial resistance may not be a factor when honey is used.
In demonstrating Manuka honey’s potential application for fighting the growth of hazardous biofilms, the research team grew strains of the most common bacteria responsible for the majority of urinary tract infections linked with long-term catheter use, Escherichia coli and Proteus mirabilis on plastic plates in their laboratory.
Manuka honey was diluted with filtered water and applied to the bacterial cultures in different strengths, ranging from 3.3 percent to 6.6 percent, 10 percent, 13.3 percent, and 16.7 percent.
Initially, the diluted honey was added at the same time as the bacteria to two of the wells. It was done in each of the 96 plates used in the study. Plain and half-strength Manuka honey were used as controls in the test. The plates were secured and locked and incubated for 24. 48 and 72 hours to gauge the effect that it had on biofilm formation.
The second phase of the research focused on establishing if Manuka honey could halt the growth of the biofilm. Honey was added after the bacteria had been growing for 24 hours and then incubated for a further 4 or 24 hours. Results of the experiments demonstrated Manuka honey inhibited the bacteria’s ‘stickiness,’ and thus the biofilm’s growth. Even the lowest dilution (3.3 percent) reduced ‘stickiness’ by 35 percent after 48 hours compared with every day and artificial honey.
After three days, all dilutions suppressed biofilm development by around 70 percent, with the most significant impact being the 16.7 percent dilution, which reduced growth by 77 percent.
The results of phase two of the study were similar, with the 16.7 percent dilution restricting growth by 38 percent after 4 hours and by 46 percent after 24 hours. The impact was increased after 48 hours, except the 3.3 percent and 6.6 percent dilutions.
While the initial results were pleasing, the study was limited to the tackiness of bacteria with biofilm development and was conducted under laboratory conditions. The next step would be to try the honey in clinical conditions replicating the flow of liquid in the bladder to clarify its suitability for field applications.
If you are continually looking for a natural remedy that will quickly and effectively act on your body’s recovery – then this is the right choice!