You might have of people using Manuka honey as a natural home remedy for alleviating symptoms of ulcerative colitis.
The good news is, there is some reliable research behind this and lots of anecdotal evidence of people having success.
In this article we'll break down the causes of ulcerative colitis and the reasons why Manuka honey might be a useful remedy.
What is ulcerative colitis?
Colitis refers to inflammation of the colon. This can be caused by viruses or bacteria.
Ulcerative colitis refers to a specific type of colitis that causes ulcers in the large intestine. It can also cause diarrhea, bleeding and cramping. According to the Cleveland Clinic, ulcerative colitis is lifelong in most people and can often be genetic.
It affects men and women equally and can occur at any age, however, you have a slightly higher chance of getting ulcerative colitis if you:
- Have someone in your direct family line with UC.
- Aged between 15 and 30.
- Eat a high-fat diet.
- Frequently use NSAIDs like ibuprofen.
Can Manuka honey help?
Manuka honey is a popular home remedy for many stomach ailments, such as h pylori and constipation. Could this translate to assisting with UC as well?
In 2008, a study was performed on rats on how honey might affect inflammatory bowel disease. The study found the following:
"In the inflammatory model of colitis, oral administration of Manuka honey 5 g/kg and Manuka honey 10 g/kg body weight significantly reduced the colonic inflammation."
While this obviously needs to be repeated on humans before we rejoice, the prospects look good.
Another study found:
"Manuka honey has been shown to specifically decrease the inflammatory response associated with ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease characterized by an overexpression of inflammatory cells, possibly by increasing antioxidant activity."
Of course, this doesn't mean Manuka honey will solve all your problems with UC. You are still advised to see a doctor regularly and monitor your condition. However, adding manuka honey to your diet may help relieve your symptoms and improve your daily quality of life.
Which Manuka Honey is best for ulcerative colitis?
When using Manuka Honey to help with a clinical condition beyond simply improving your general health and wellbeing, we always recommend using the highest UMF grade possible, and this would be no different for ulcerative colitis.
UMF is an indicator of the potency of the unique properties of Manuka honey. We explain this much more in this article here.
Our favourite Manuka honey that offers a high UMF grading is the UMF 24+ from NZ Honey Co. It's extremely affordable and UMF 24 offers higher purity than most other manuka honey products on the market.
However, if you would like the highest potency possible, we would recommend their UMF 28+ product.
This is significantly more expensive but for the purity it offers, we think it's a more than reasonable price. In fact, we're surprised they are even able to offer it at the price point they do.
There are a very small handful of apiaries that are able to produce UMF 28+ grade honey, and it's usually in very limited batches. If you're after the best of the best, and the highest potency possible, this is it.
You can purchase it directly from their website here, and they ship worldwide.
Best of luck and wishing you health!