The benefits of taking propolis are well documented. Once considered a folk medicine, propolis has become a mainstream natural remedy. It is particularly popular in Brazil and South East Asia, where it is widely known as a food supplement. Propolis is becoming increasingly popular in other countries and regions – particularly across mainland Europe. At BeeVital we have spent years researching propolis alongside top universities and international research groups. We believe that the scientific evidence for the health benefits of propolis is driving a renewed interest in this amazing substance.
In this post we look at 5 benefits of taking propolis and the positive effect doing so can have on the body. We conclude with a few suggestions for the kind of propolis products you might use if you want to take propolis regularly.
Propolis is Anti-Inflammatory
Propolis has been shown to be an effective anti-inflammatory, primarily due to the presence of CAPE (caffeic acid phenyl ethyl ester). CAPE is flavonoid – a type of naturally occuring chemical which promotes healing. It has been shown to vastly reduce levels of inflammation in the body. This is because it acts to inhibit the activity of enzymes which cause capillaries to leak blood into the surrounding tissue.
Propolis is Anti-Bacterial
The anti-bacterial properies of propolis are well documented. Propolis has been shown to exhibit powerful anti-bacterial activity in the beehive, as well as in the body. This is primarily due to its capacity to inhibit the growth of biofilm. Biofilm is a kind of protective shield that bacteria develop which allows them to multiply more easily. Propolis prevents biofilm from forming, which in turn enables the body to more effectively combat the infection. This is particularly apparent when treating an infection with antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance has become a major health threat, but when paired with propolis antibiotics which have become ineffective begin to work again. This is an area of research we are particularly interested in – we believe propolis holds the key to preventing the continued rise in drug-resistant bacteria.
Propolis is Anti-Viral
Viruses cannot generally be treated by antibiotics or other types of drugs. Propolis appears to act as a kind of immuno-stimulant, prompting the body to produce more antibodies which help defend it against infection.
Propolis has a complex chemical structure – containing more than 300 individual chemicals. Research has also shown that the combinations of flavonoids in propolis (such as galangin, kaempferol and quercetin) appear to operate synergistically. That is, these chemicals appear to be less effective at combatting viral infections when used individually than when taken together.
Propolis is Antioxidant
Free radicals are unstable atoms which move around the body. They are linked to both cell damage and ageing. Stress, infections, X-rays, poor diet and even pollution can contribute to the creation of free radicals. As a result, research in this area is garnering a lot of attention – particularly as the prevelance of chronic diseases and cancer is on the rise. Could propolis help reverse this trend? Research would suggest so. The high levels of flavonoids in propolis enable it to act as a kind of free radical collection or scavenging system, mopping up these harmful particles.
Propolis is Adaptogenic
In simple terms, an adaptogen helps the body respond to external stresses, without compromising wellbeing. There are many plants and mushrooms which exhibit these adaptogenic properties. Primarily an adaptogen helps boost the immune system, balance hormones, promote cognitive function and are highly antioxidant. By acting as an immuno-stimulant, helping the body fight infection and mopping up free radicals, propolis fits well within the category of adaptogens.
How to Take Propolis
As you can see, there are many benefits of taking propolis regularly. These wide-ranging effects demonstrate that propolis is far more than a traditional folk remedy. The scientific evidence for these health-promoting properties is well documented. But which propolis product is right for you?
If you’re looking to take propolis regularly to treat a chronic condition like inflammation we would recomment Propolis Capsules or Propolis Tablets. These contain a high proportion of pure propolis, packed full of flavonoids. Taking propolis in this form also avoids the strong taste of the liquid products.
Propolis can also be used topically to treat wounds or skin conditions. To disinfect cuts and grazes we would recommend using Propolis Liquid or Propolis Tincture. These products are easily dispensed with the pipettes included in each bottle. For skin conditions such as eczema, we would recommend using Propolis Cream. This is a naturally moisturising cream with added propolis liquid which is anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial.
To give your daily oral hygiene routine a boost we’d recommend brushing with our Propolis Toothpaste. This product has been recently reformulated to pack in even more healing plant power. After brushing use our Propolis Mouthwash for long-lasting freshness.