Honey for wounds – the old is new.

from my friend and fellow beekeeper Dick Johnson,    oldrone@verizon.net

In my opinion, any raw honey is adequate but this one is….. FDA approved!

Wound healing honey now available 

Confirming the report in the Honeybee Corner this time last year, the Manuka honey from New Zealand has not only received OK from the FDA but now it will be available to consumers in special gauze packages through your drug store. In a publication distributed to pharmacies “medical honey” called “Medihoney” is being used for treatment of ulcers, surgical wounds and burns. Harvested from the nectar of the Manuka (Leptospermum) shrub blossoms, this special type of honey has been proven to possess far better healing properties than any other raw honey which has been used for thousands of years for wound healing.

Just as amazing as the remarkable healing properties of Manuka honey is the “prompt FDA recognition” of this special honey. It appears that the overwhelming “anecdotal” evidence of healing qualities have “forced” prompt recognition that usually requires decades of testing and many millions of $ to gain acceptance. Well known to technical honey researchers are several different mechanisms that contribute to the healing benefit. The 82% sugar content in itself contributes to antibiotic function as the osmotic pressure desiccates living microorganisms. In some cultures, concentrated sugar (sucrose) solutions are used and do provide some antibiotic properties. The low pH of raw honey also inhibits the growth of pathogens. The most effective antibiotic property of honey is the glucose oxidase enzyme provided by the honeybee while producing honey. When this enzyme comes in contact with living, moist tissue, hydrogen peroxide, a powerful antiseptic, is released gradually to prevent pathogen growth. Most raw honey (the unheated type) does perform all of the healing properties listed above. Heating of honey destroys the glucose oxidase enzyme so do not use “supermarket honey” for healing. 


Why is Manuka honey better?  It has been found that the special New Zealand honey does contain some other factor providing a higher level of antibiotic activity up to 30 times more effective than other raw honey. For a few decades this unusual property was labeled the “Unique Manuka Factor” (UMF). As reported last year, a group of German scientists were able to isolate and identify the UMF as the known aldehyde called “Methylgloxal”. This compound has been associated with certain types of holistic healing but is not recognized by the medical community. The FDA approved Manuka gauze pads are rather pricey but liquid Manuka honey in different levels of antibiotic activity are available for consumer


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