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Manuka honey has been around for centuries, but it's only in recent years that this elixir from New Zealand has become quite popular in Europe, Asia and the Americas.
Celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow are big fans but what exactly is manuka honey? How should you eat it? And, most importantly, why should you consume it? Let's take a look.
What is Manuka Honey
This very special honey is the product of bees that feed on the Manuka bushes native to New Zealand. It is the same plant where tea tree oil, another powerful ingredient to have in your arsenal, comes from.
Researchers have discovered that manuka honey retains all of its antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial properties, which makes it a powerhouse for treating everything from acne to ulcers, cuts and wounds.
How to Eat Manuka Honey
You should know that manuka honey is pricier than the regular honey so you'll want to make sure you are getting the most for your money.
The best way to eat manuka honey is raw, since you'll reap all the benefits. Never mix it with boiling liquids, as the heat will kill sterilise the honey, taking away all of its antimicrobial properties.
Here are a few ways to eat manuka honey:
- consume one or two teaspoons of raw honey daily for good health
- stir into your favorite tea
- use it to naturally sweeten smoothies
- combine with oil and vinegar for a zesty salad dressing
- mix with warm milk before bedtime
Manuka Oil: Getting The Best Quality
Read the labels carefully to make sure you are purchasing the highest quality manuka honey. The label should specify it is a product of New Zealand. You'll notice a UMF rating (which stands for Unique Manuka Factor and relates to its antibacterial potency). A UMF16 and higher is considered the best quality, according to Dr Axe.