Health Benefits of Bee Propolis
Everyone knows bees produce honey but not many know they make so much more. Something else they make is a kind of “bee glue” called propolis. There are a lot of great health benefits associated to this bee propolis. The following are all bee propolis benefits.
It Fights Cancer
One of the most important bee propolis benefits is that it is a powerful anti-cancer substance. There are over three hundred active compounds in propolis and all of them work to fight many different kinds of cancer including brain, pancreas, kidney, skin, prostate and breast cancer. It works by preventing new blood cells from feeding the cancer cells and preventing cancer from spreading to another organ. It also stimulates apoptosis, or cell death, to further prevent cancer from spreading and developing (1).
Another benefit of bee propolis is that it’s a powerful anti-microbial. It also works great at fighting fungal and viral infections. A study on animals showed that applying propolis to wounds increased the recovery time for diabetic rats. It’s also effective for children and has been shown to prevent respiratory tract infections, alleviate the symptoms of a common cold, and prevent middle ear infections (2).
It Heals Burns
A study from 2002 published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that one bee propolis benefit is that it can help people recover from minor burns. The researchers compared the effects of a propolis skin cream and silver sulfadiazine; a drug commonly used to treat burns. The study showed that propolis was just as effective as the sulfadiazine in treating a second-degree burn (3).
It Stops Cavities from Forming
Greek and Roman physicians would use propolis as a mouth disinfectant. More modern studies have shown that propolis can be used to treat periodontitis and gingivitis. There are other studies that have shown propolis limits the production of bacterial plaque and prevents the development of tooth cavities. Further studies have shown that propolis may in fact be able to regenerate dental pulp, bone tissue, and cartilage (4).
It Removes Warts
135 patients took part in a single-blind 3-month randomised trial. The patients all had warts and they were treated with either oral propolis, Echinacea, or a placebo. The results of the study were published in the International Journal of Dermatology. The study showed that the patients who had plane or common warts had a cure rate of 75% and 73%. The results were much better for propolis over the Echinacea or placebo.
It’s easy to underestimate how much bees do for us. You could argue that bees are vital to the survival of the world as they pollinate trees and plants, which we need to produce oxygen. Now you know that bees also do a lot of other cool things. Not only do they produce delicious honey but they also produce bee propolis which you can use to prevent cancer, treat a burn, heal your teeth, or even remove a wart.