From treating flu and cold symptoms to allergies and hay fever, honey has been used since ancient times to treat ailments. But is all honey the same? Apparently not. Manuka honey seems to be the most talked about honey and it’s not just the health junkies who are name-dropping it. So, is this really a must to add to your daily nutrition or just an expensive hype?
What makes Manuka honey different?
Manuka honey comes from the white flowers of the manuka bush, which grows in New Zealand. The bees which produce this type of honey feed on the nectar of the Manuka plant, better known as tea tree which gives Manuka honey its potent anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. Add to this the powerful enzymes produced by bees and your will get a superfood which can also treat health problems such as ulcers, acid reflux, IBS, flu symptoms, sore throats, eye infections, wounds, acne, burns, gastritis burns and more.
Know Your Honey
Manuka honey comes with an UMF which stands for Unique Manuka Factor which is equivalent to the antibacterial potency which is unique in Manuka honey. This factor which is found on the jar start from UMF10 and go up to UMF25. The higher the UMF, the higher the antibacterial strength. New Zealand organic manuka honey is also darker in colour than the average honey which indicates higher antibacterial and antioxidant potency in honey.
It’s also referred to as medical-grade honey as it contains sterilizing properties and can be applied directly to wounds and infections. So, a jar of Manuka honey also doubles up in your medicine cabinet.
Bottom Line: is it worth spending the extra pennies on Manuka Honey? It takes a lot of bees months just to make one jar of honey. There’s a big chance that cheap honey is nothing more than honey without the pollen, which means that it won’t contain health benefits. Besides that, white sugar is used to “bulk” it out. So, you’re actually wasting your money buying the cheap honey. Having a jar of good quality Manuka honey at home is a multi-functional must-have so it’s definitely worth the money. Look out for the UMF Quality Trademark as well as the UMF Rating Standard to make sure you buy the real thing.