Cold and Flu Season: Bee Propolis For Optimal Health
Most people know that honey is a powerhouse when it comes to natural health and healing. Used topically or ingested, raw honey is antibacterial, soothing, and nourishing. But honey isn’t the only bee product that deserves a standing ovation, and in fact, lesser-known bee propolis might take first place when it comes to navigating cold and flu season. Today we will explore the many ways in which you can harness the power of bee propolis for optimal health.
What Is Bee Propolis?
Bee propolis is a resinous mixture produced by honey bees. It’ a combination of beeswax and saliva, and the bees use it as a glue for their hive. The word Propolis comes from the Greek pro meaning “in defense” and the word polis meaning “city.” Not only does propolis keep the hive protected from the outside world, but it also acts as a stalwart defender of your city: your body.
Bee propolis is made up of over 300 beneficial compounds, ranging from amino acids, polyphenols, and natural steroids. The specific chemical make-up of propolis depends on the type of botanicals pollinated by bees and includes up to 10% essential oils from these plants. Propolis also contains around 5% bee pollen, another nutrient-dense superfood.
Raw honey contains small amounts of propolis, but if you’re looking to truly reap the benefits of propolis, best to go straight to the source.
The Benefits Of Bee Propolis
Bee propolis has been used as a healing remedy dating back to 300 BC with records of use by the ancient Egyptians. Today propolis is used for a wide range of purposes due to its antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as its nutrient density.
Propolis can be used both topically and taken orally for a wide range of benefits, including:
Fight Cold and Flu
Thanks to its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, propolis is one of the best first defenses at any sign of cold and flu. Studies suggest that symptoms improve after the very first day using propolis, and so it’s a must-have on hand during sniffles season. A propolis spray also soothes a sore throat!
When used topically, propolis is a powerful healer of wounds and inflammatory skin conditions. It’s antibacterial and antimicrobial content helps prevent infection, while the nutrients speed up recovery and minimize any scarring. As a potent PAK-1 inhibitor, propolis also reduces chronic inflammation and can help soothe skin irritations without the nasty side effects of many topical medicated creams.
Heal and Prevent Cold Sores and Genital Herpes
Various studies support the use of propolis for treatments of warts and cold sores. The use of propolis on warts beat out the use of echinacea and a placebo in one study, with a success rate of over 70%. Propolis has also shown success in natural therapy to heal both oral (HSV-1) and genital (HSV-2) herpes. The propolis helped reduce the pain and duration of outbreaks, and also helped increase the efficacy of conventional medications.
Bee Propolis Boosts Immune System
Loaded with nutrients including a high amount of polyphenol antioxidants, it’s no surprise that bee propolis is a fantastic immune booster. Thanks to its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, propolis is genuinely an all-star for cold and flu season, both preventatively and at the first sign of any symptoms.
Bee Propolis Treats Acne
Although the cause of acne varies, propolis can help treat a wide range of breakouts rooted in bacterial overload. When used topically, propolis also helps alleviate the inflammation associated with most breakouts, can help calm irritation and redness, and reduce scarring.
Fights Parasites and Candida
Studies suggest that propolis may be a successful treatment for certain parasitic infections, including common waterborne parasite Giardia lamblia. Due to its antifungal properties, propolis has also shown promise in helping reduce and prevent candida overgrowth.
Bee Propolis contains a broad spectrum of nutrients and bioactive compounds. Therefore, bee propolis can be used as a general supplement for wellbeing, health, and longevity. The high antioxidant content in Bee Propolis fights the free radicals we are exposed to daily. Bee propolis protects your DNA and boosts your immune system. Thankfully, like many honey products, there are excellent tasting propolis products on the market. So, incorporating it into your daily routine isn’t hard to do!
How To Use Bee Propolis
How to use bee propolis depends on what you’re trying to achieve with it. When used topically, it can be applied directly to the skin and is especially useful to help heal wounds or any inflammatory skin conditions like eczema or psoriasis. When consumed internally, it can be gargled or sprayed in the throat, or taken in dosage according to the label in water once or twice a day.
Propolis can be used reactively or preventatively, so it’s a great supplement to have on hand during cold and flu season. Taking 2-4 drops in warm water, or spraying a high-quality propolis spray into your throat once or twice a day can ward off bacteria and prevent illness before it hits.
Sourcing The Best Bee Propolis
Like most healing foods, quality matters. When it comes to all honey products, it’s essential to know the quality. You want to ensure your product is harvested sustainably and ethically, both for the bees and for your benefit. Bees are in danger and play such a crucial role in our ecosystem that supporting the right kind of apiculture (beekeeping) can make a huge difference in their survival. Choosing high-quality bee products is not only good for the bees, but it also means a more beneficial outcome for you. Bee products that come from organic beekeeping methods and proper extraction mean more bioavailability and nutrients.
Although it would be ideal to source the propolis directly from a beekeeper, this isn’t always possible. The second best option would be to find a company you can trust, like Beekeepers Naturals.
THIS SUPERFOOD is another bee product, but it actually serves as the immune system of the hive. Made from collected plant resins, bees line the walls of their hive with this to protect themselves from bacteria, viruses, and parasites. And to provide a clean, safe environment in which baby bees can thrive. Think of this as the hive healer. This powerful natural wonder guards the hive to ensure that germs don’t stand a chance. The great news is that we can reap major benefits from propolis, too!
Just a few sprays are all it takes to keep your immunity strong and well (special discount already applied for our community)
Sustainability-obsessed beekeepers run the company, and all their products are made with:
- All-natural ingredients
- No added sugars, colors, flavors, GMOs, or anything artificial
- Sustainable beekeeping methods and awareness to help save the bees
The Beekeeper’s Naturals Propolis is alcohol-free and tastes delicious, so it’s family-friendly!
- Cheng, Paul C, and Geary Wong. 1996. “Honey Bee Propolis: Prospects In Medicine.” Bee World 77 (1): 8-15. doi:10.1080/0005772x.1996.11099278.
- Pasupuleti, Visweswara Rao, Lakhsmi Sammugam, Nagesvari Ramesh, and Siew Hua Gan. 2017. “Honey, Propolis, And Royal Jelly: A Comprehensive Review Of Their Biological Actions And Health Benefits.” Oxidative Medicine And Cellular Longevity 2017: 1-21. doi:10.1155/2017/1259510.
- Simone-Finstrom, Michael, and Marla Spivak. 2010. “Propolis And Bee Health: The Natural History And Significance Of Resin Use By Honey Bees.” Apidologie 41 (3): 295-311. doi:10.1051/apido/2010016.
- Trichard, M, G Chaufferin, and N Nicoloyannis. 2005. “Pharmacoeconomic Comparison Between Homeopathic And Antibiotic Treatment Strategies In Recurrent Acute Rhinopharyngitis In Children.” Homeopathy 94 (1): 3-9. doi:10.1016/j.homp.2004.11.021.
- Yildirim, Ayse, Gulay Gulbol Duran, Nizami Duran, Kemal Jenedi, Behiye Sezgin Bolgul, Meral Miraloglu, and Mustafa Muz. 2016. “Antiviral Activity Of Hatay Propolis Against Replication Of Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 And Type 2”. Medical Science Monitor 22: 422-430. doi:10.12659/msm.897282.
- Zedan, Hatem, Eman R. M. Hofny, and Sahar A. Ismail. 2009. “Propolis As An Alternative Treatment For Cutaneous Warts.” International Journal Of Dermatology 48 (11): 1246-1249. doi:10.1111/j.1365-4632.2009.04184.x.