A natural and powerful medicine, honey has been used since ancient times for both its nutritional value and its topical healing power.
Wound Healing Properties of Honey Aid in the Treatment of Gum Disease
It is the wound-healing properties of honey that are useful in the treatment of gum diseases such as gingivitis, bleeding and receding gums. When mixed with water, an enzyme in honey (glucose oxidase) produces hydrogen perioxide. Hydrogen peroxide is an antiseptic and there are other antioxidant elements of honey that act as antimicrobial agents.
Studies show that honey stops the growth of plaque-forming bacteria and prevents the bacteria from developing polysaccharide or the glue that enables it to stick to your teeth and gums.
Not Every and Not Just Any Honey Works
While ancient history and modern science demonstrate the effectiveness of honey in the treatment of a wide variety of infections including gingivitis, you can’t use just any honey. Honey that is highly processed…pasteurized and filtered…loses its medicinal value. Pure raw honey is the key but it may be contaminated so it must be treated with gamma radiation to sterilise the honey without destroying the medicinal properites.
Finally, not all honey has a high level of antibacterial activity. So check the label.
Active Manuka Honey from New Zealand is one of the most researched and best known honeys for medicinal use. It has been used in studies around the world from the treatment of ulcers to diabetic sores to gingivitis.
To treat gingivitis with active honey, mix honey with water and use as a mouthwash several times a day. Some people reportedly rub active honey directly on the affected gums.
Other Medicinal Benefits of Honey
Numerous studies show that the daily consumption of raw honey 1 improves the antioxidant levels of blood and thus may help prevent arteriosclerosis (a cause of heart disease). The darker the honey the higher the antioxidant level.
Studies also show that honey may be a healthy energy food for athletes because it helps keep blood sugar at an optimum level for a longer period of time in comparison to other carbohydrates.
Various reports indicate honey is effective against infections caused by:
- Staphylococcus aureus2
- Escherichia coli(ecoli)
- candida albicans (fungus)
- Helicobacter pylori (the cause of stomach ulcers)
Be cautious. Use only pure, raw, uncontaminated, sterilized honey such as Active Manuka Honey for topical treatments.
Healing Honey References
- The Top 100 Healing Foods: 100 Foods to Relieve Common Ailments and Enhance Health and Vitality
- The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods
- Manuka Honey as a Medicine P.C. Molan, Honey Research Unit, Univ of Waikato, Hamilton New Zealand.
- The Effects of Manuka Honey on Plaque and Gingivitis: A Pilot Study
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