Secret Benefits of Honey for Wound Healing

Posted by John Coppola on 07 Aug, 18

Honey is an ancient remedy used for medicinal purposes like healing many kinds of wounds, including serious wounds that don’t respond well to conventional treatments. Its use has been dated as far back as 2200 BC and began with the Egyptians. Archeologists have reported

discovering unspoiled pots of honey in the Egyptian tombs they have excavated.

Honey then became a conventional therapy in fighting infection up until the early 20th century. During this time, its use slowly vanished with the advent of penicillin. Once again, the use of honey in wound care is regaining popularity. Researchers have discovered the effectiveness of honey with fighting serious skin infections. In fact, there are a multitude of clinical studies currently, showing its effectiveness in expediting wound recovery.

Honey has antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and antioxidant activities that make it ideal for treating wounds. In the US, Derma Sciences (a tissue regeneration company at the forefront of research and management of acute and chronic wounds and burns) uses Manuka honey for their wound and burn dressings.

Manuka honey is made with pollen gathered from the flowers of the Manuka bush (native to New Zealand). It has the highest concentration of antimicrobial andantibacterial properties. C linical trials have revealed this type of honey can effectively.

Eradicate more than 250 clinical strains of bacteria, including resistant varieties such as:

  • MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus)
  • MSSA (methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus)
  • VRE (vancomycin-resistant enterococci)

How does Manuka Honey Heal Wounds?

Honey releases hydrogen peroxide through an enzymatic process, but active Manuka honey contains an extra ingredient that makes it far superior for killing off bacteria than other types of honey. It’s called the Unique Manuka Factor (UMF). The UMF is what gives Manuka its extraordinary antibacterial activity.

All Honeys not created Equal

Because of industrialization, not all honeys have the amazing healing benefits of Manuka honey. In fact, of the 300 plus varieties of honey to choose from, many brands aren’t even honey. Many are nothing more than High Fructose Corn Syrup.

To ensure you are getting a pure good honey, it’s best to go to your local health food store, local farm co-op or go online to purchase the real thing.

For treating wounds, ulcers, burns and lesions always use Manuka honey. It has the highest antibacterial properties of most honeys. Due to the UMF, Manuka honey has been reported to inhibit more than 80 species of bacteria, in comparison to other types of honey. It’s also very potent and effective against killing viruses and fungus. As stated in the journal of Microbiology, 2012, Manuka honey is far superior for killing off bacteria.

Treats Burns, Wounds and Ulcers

According to research published in the Jundishapur Journal of Natural Pharmaceutical Products, “The use of honey leads to improved wound healing in acute cases, painrelief in burn patients, as well as a decreased inflammatory response in both cases.” Moreover, because of its rich antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory characteristics, Manuka honey has been shown to prevent infection in rats with ulcers. It has also been used quite effectively as a wound dressing to promote rapid, improved healing.

Several clinical trials have concluded that honey wound dressing is superior to conventional wound dressings for the treatment of diabetic ulcers and burns.

Honey for Shingles and Herpes

Manuka honey also offers topical benefits for herpes sores: The honey as a remedy has been found to:

  • Draw fluid away from the sore.
  • The high sugar content suppresses microorganism growth preventing further sores/lesions.
  • Calms inflammation from the eruption.

In one study, 16 adult subjects with a history of recurrent labial (lip) and genital herpes attacks used honey to treat one attack, and a commonly prescribed antiviral drug, Acyclovir cream, during another.

Interestingly, honey provided significantly better treatment results. For labial (lip) herpes, the mean healing time was 43 percent better, and for genital herpes, 59 percent better than acyclovir. Pain and crusting was also significantly reduced with the honey, compared to the drug.

Another study conducted by Reza Yaghoobi et al found that honey has the potential to reduce significant viral infection from wound-like lesions and was highly effective on the Herpes Zoster virus (Shingles).

In our peripheral neuropathy clinic, we see a large number of patients who developed neuropathy as a result of diabetes. Because of this, commonly many of these patients also suffer from diabetic ulcers, some very severe in nature.

Subsequently, we use a product called ‘Wound Honey’. Wound Honey is comprised of Manuka Honey along with Aloe vera. We’ve seen amazing results in healing of stubborn sores and ulcerations. Patients have been astounded. Many of them had recurring sores that would not close. After consistent application of ‘Wound Honey,’ their sores healed.

This blog has been provided by Dr. John Coppola, D.C. and Dr. Valerie Monteiro, D.C. Dr. Coppola and Dr. Monteiro are the founders of the San Antonio Neuropathy Center, and Precision Sport & Spine. They are the leading experts in the field of neuropathy and specifically drug free nerve repair. They are the authors of the critically acclaimed book "Defeat Neuropathy Now .... In Spite of Your Doctor. The doctors have over 25 years of clinical experience.

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