Manuka Honey – A Powerful Natural Health Ingredient

Whether drizzled on your morning porridge or in your afternoon tea, manuka honey is a powerful natural health ingredient. Look for the UMF label, which stands for Unique Manuka Factor. This rating is based on levels of three signature compounds found in the honey: MGO, dihydroxyacetone and leptosperin.

UMF manuka honey contains methylglyoxal, which has antibacterial properties. In contrast, multifloral honey is a blend of different types of honey.


Studies show Manuka honey’s antibacterial properties make it helpful in preventing and treating infections. It can help treat stomach ulcers caused by helicobacter pylori and reduce symptoms of cystic fibrosis, an inherited disorder that damages the lungs by affecting cells that produce mucus, which can thicken and block airways.

The effectiveness of Manuka honey’s antibacterial properties is attributed to its high levels of phenolic compounds, particularly Methylglyoxal (MGO), which determines the Unique Manuka Factor rating. Studies have found that the higher the MGO level, the greater the antibacterial activity of the honey.

However, other components of honey also contribute to its antibacterial properties, such as hydrogen peroxide and bee defensin-1. Therefore, MGO may not be the key factor influencing the antibiotic activity of Manuka honey against S. aureus.


Manuka honey blend can help control the growth of bacteria that cause gum disease. It can also prevent ulcers and other infections in the digestive tract by limiting the bacteria that produce inflammatory chemicals.

The anti-inflammatory properties of manuka honey may also be useful in reducing inflammation associated with cancer treatment. It has been shown to reduce the side effect of mucositis, an infection of the lining in the digestive tract caused by chemotherapy drugs.

A tablespoon of manuka honey a day is recommended for most adults. However, it is important to note that it should be avoided by people who are allergic to honey or bees and those with diabetes. Ensure you are using pure New Zealand manuka honey with the UMF trademark and rating.


Honey has long been known for its antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, but the benefits don’t stop there. Research suggests that manuka honey, which gets its healing properties from the compound methylglyoxal (MGO), may also have anti-cancer effects.

A study found that MGO “synergistically enhances the chemopreventive effect of 5-fluorouracil on colon cancer stem-like cells through inducing oxidative DNA damage, downregulating apoptosis inhibitors, altering metabolic phenotypes and suppressing metastasis ability.”

In addition to fighting cancer, manuka honey’s antibacterial properties can help treat diabetes-related ulcers, improve oral health and soothe a sore throat. It has also been shown to be effective against the bacteria that cause stomach ulcers, including Helicobacter pylori. It may even prevent and control cystic fibrosis, an inherited disorder that damages the lungs by affecting the cells that produce mucus.


Manuka honey’s natural antibiotic properties can help with digestive issues. It also helps to balance low stomach acid and reduce symptoms of acid reflux. It has been shown to inhibit the growth of bacteria that cause these conditions.

It has been found to naturally downregulate the most potent genes in MRSA, a dangerous strain of bacteria that resists antibiotic treatment. It can be used to treat wounds, burns and sores because it has the ability to slow down the growth of bacteria and promote healing.

When choosing Manuka honey, look for the UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) rating which guarantees it’s medicinal quality and a guarantee of its antibacterial properties. You can find medical-grade Manuka honey at most health food stores and online. This type of honey is more expensive, but well worth it for those with CF and other respiratory disorders.


The antifungal properties of manuka are attributed to its unique chemical profile, which includes methylglyoxal and other volatile compounds. These components stimulate macrophages to release mediators needed for tissue healing and prevent microbial infections. Additionally, these compounds have a wide range of antimicrobial, antiparasitic, and anti-inflammatory activities.

Leptospermone-derived methylglyoxal and grandiflorone had strong inhibitory activity against Gram negative foodborne pathogens, including Salmonella typhimurium and Clostridium perfringens (inhibitory zone >30 mm on treatment with 2 or 5 mg/disc) [20].

The antiparasitic activity of manuka oil is also impressive. It was found to be more effective than tea tree, eucalyptus, and lavender oil against the poultry red mite Dermatophagoides gallinae in contact and fumigant assays. It was also highly effective against the plant pathogens Phytophthora cactorum and Cryphonectria parasitica in fumigation assays.

Leave a Reply