Aside from the vital role bees perform in plant pollination, they also provide humans with several health-boosting substances – honey itself has numerous therapeutic properties; bee pollen and bee propolis also offer amazing health benefits.
Bee propolis – also known as “bee glue” – is a sticky substance derived from tree resin collected by bees.
Bee propolis begins as a resin secreted by trees. Bees metabolize it, and the resulting substance is about 30 percent beeswax, 55 percent resins and 10 percent aromatic oils and ethers. It is responsible for creating a sterile, safe environment within bee hives, so it’s no surprise that it has antibiotic, antiviral and other healing properties.
Bees gather the sap during warm weather, blending it with wax flakes they store in their abdomens. The resulting mixture is rolled into a ball by the bee and then stored in the pollen basket attached to the bee’s leg. Once a bee gathers enough propolis, it takes it back to the hive.
At this point, the propolis is unloaded and used to patch up holes in the hive. Bees also use propolis as an antiseptic barrier covering invaders with the sticky substance to prevent hive contamination.
Bee propolis health benefits
Cancer-fighting properties – Propolis has been shown to be effective in killing cancer cells. Unlike other mainstream cancer treatments, propolis kills only cancer cells, leaving healthy cells unharmed.
Bone health – Propolis helps in the growth and maintenance of healthy bones. It fights inflammation and stops bones from deteriorating.
Food poisoning treatment – Due to its antimicrobial properties, the three most common microorganisms associated with food poisoning – Enterobacter faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus and C. jejuni – can be fought using bee propolis.
Inflammation relief – Bee propolis is an effective treatment for oral inflammation and infections. Its anti-inflammatory properties are also useful in the treatment of arthritis, heart disease and Alzheimer’s.
Blood pressure management – Bee propolis can be used to decrease TH (Tyrosine hydroxylase) enzyme activity. This enzyme can inhibit the production of nitric oxide, which is important for healthy hearts. Propolis reduces hypertension and helps keep blood pressure at healthy levels.
Wart removal – Applied topically, propolis can get rid of often difficult-to-remove plantar warts. A daily application for two weeks should do the trick.
Allergy relief – Propolis blocks histamine response, making it an effective treatment against allergy symptoms such as runny noses and itchy red eyes.
Protection against heat stress – Due to its combined antioxidant, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and other properties, propolis can protect against heat exhaustion while also improving athletic performance in high temperature environments.
Illness prevention and treatment for infections – The various health-boosting properties of bee propolis can help in treating and preventing colds, flu and other germ-transmitted illnesses. Propolis fights a wide range of bacteria, viruses and fungi and provides a general boost to the entire immune system.
Propolis available in lozenges, capsules and topical applications
Bee propolis is available in many forms, including lozenges that are effective in treating sore throats, capsules that can be taken internally, and tinctures, gels or ointments for topical use
People who have a history of allergic reactions or hypersensitivity to bee stings or other bee products may also experience similar reactions to bee propolis. Always read the label before using any propolis products and consult with a health care provider if you have any questions. For most people, however, using bee propolis is a completely safe and natural way to boost your health and treat a variety of common ailments.
July 7, 2017