You’ve probably heard of Manuka honey and its powerful health benefits. But do you know how to choose it and which Manuka honey brands are best? In this post, I’ll help you choose the best Manuka honey based on its UMF rating and other important factors. I’ll also explain to you why Manuka honey is worth the price and why I recommend these four brands: Manuka Health, Comvita, Wedderspoon or Kiva.
What’s Manuka Honey?
Medicinal Manuka honey is considered one of the rarest and most medicinally powerful kinds of honey known to man. It can only be obtained from the nectar of a small, indigenous bush found in New Zealand called the Manuka bush. Although you can also find the Manuka bush in some parts of Australia, “true” Manuka honey can only be made from the bushes in New Zealand (source).
Manuka Oil is another amazing product that comes from the Manuka bush. It’s the essential oil that is produced by steam distillation of the leaves of the Manuka plant. If you’re interested in learn more about the properties of Manuka oil, you should read this article : What’s Manuka oil?
Both Manuka honey and Manuka oil are extremely potent and contain all the unique properties of the Manuka plant.
What Are the Uses of Manuka Honey?
According to studies into the potency of Manuka honey, it has amplified antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. Research has shown that Manuka honey is well capable of killing strains of bacteria that are resistant to conventional antibiotic treatment (source).
Administering Manuka honey externally is especially beneficial when it comes to preventing wound infection thanks to the abundant presence of methylglyoxal (MG), the antibacterial component found in most honey (source).
As such, the topical administration of Manuka honey has the following uses:
- Treatment of cold sores
- Preventing infections on cuts and abrasions
- Treating boils, diabetic ulcers, ringworms, athlete’s foot, rashes, and nail fungus
- Soothing burns
- Remedying the symptoms of psoriasis, rosacea, acne, eczema, and other skin diseases
- Treating bedsores
When taken internally, Manuka honey is just as beneficial to the human body. It is known to alleviate the following diseases:
- Peptic ulcers
- Acid reflux, heartburn, and indigestion
- GIT infections (such as yeast infections)
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Diarrhea and constipation
- Coughs and sore throat
- Dental diseases such as gingivitis and plaque
Taking Manuka honey orally will also improve the general health of your immune system. Some research has also shown that it has an effect on controlling the growth of cancerous tumors and alleviating the symptoms that arise after chemotherapy treatment. (source)
How is Manuka honey produced?
To produce Manuka honey, the hives have to be placed in the right location to maximize the bees’ exposure to the Manuka nectar flow. However, it’s impossible to get 100% pure Manuka honey because you can’t tell the bees to only work the Manuka flowers! The bees usually forage other nectars too.
Fortunately experienced Manuka honey producers know what to do to increase the concentration of Manuka honey. This is why it’s important that the Manuka honey you buy has been tested by independent laboratories in New Zealand to verify the concentration of Manuka honey in each batch. They will test the honey for dietary Methylglyoxal (MG or MGO), which makes the potency of Manuka honey.
Most honey is stored in bulk for about 1-2 years. Then it’s packed and shipped out.
Which Manuka Honey Should I Choose?
Genuine Manuka honey from New Zealand comes with a UMF rating on the jar. The UMF rating is often dependent on the natural markers of the honey, such as the methylglyoxal and leptosperin content.
The UMF rating also corresponds with the overall NPA (non-peroxide activity) of the honey. The NPA rating of a jar of honey tells you whether it is ordinary or special. (source)
This is regular honey, i.e., it has no significant therapeutic benefits.
At this rating, you will get good quality honey that is mostly useful when it comes to enhancing your overall immunity.
UMF 15+ to UMF 25+
Manuka honey with a rating of 15+ and higher is quite potent. It can be used in the treatment of internal ailments such as gastric distress, flu, dental illnesses, and much more.
UMF 20+ and higher
Manuka honey with a rating of 20+ of higher is recommended for topical uses such as the treatment of wounds or sores. Honey with an even higher rating (25+ and higher) will be even more potent, but the price tag is very high.
When it comes to soothing skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema, I recommend that you use Manuka honey with a high UMF rating – minimum UMF 12+. Manuka Health MGO 400+ or Comvita are great options (see below).
Where can I buy Manuka honey?
You can purchase Manuka honey from health food stores. But if you don’t have a health food store nearby, Manuka honey can be purchased directly from Amazon or other websites that sell health care products.
Before you buy Manuka honey, check the MGO or UMF rating first. In fact, some Manuka honeys are not 100% pure and are mixed with other types of less expensive honey. Stay away from fake Manuka honey brands, especially If you’re purchasing it for its medicinal qualities.
What are the Best Manuka Honey Brands?
I have found the following four brands of Manuka honey to offer the best value for money, not only because of their relative affordability but also for their high potency. Even if Manuka honey is more costly than regular honey, it’s definitely worth the price.
You may find one of these Manuka honey brands in health food stores. Otherwise they are available on Amazon too:
4 Best Manuka Honey Brands
Here are reviews of these four best types of Manuka honey.
1. “Manuka Health” Manuka Honey Brand (MGO 400+)
One of the reasons why I prefer this particular brand is because it is less bitter than most Manuka honey brands with a high UMF rating. It has a significantly thicker texture which is great for topical application.
I use it for psoriasis (topically) and I take it internally as well. In my experience it’s one of the best Manuka honey brands on the market.
A good thing about this honey is that the taste and the consistency of this honey is good enough to consume plain. So you won’t have to worry about unpleasant tastes and strong odors.
Rated MGO 400+ (UMF 12+), this honey works wonders whether it is in the treatment of common ailments such as the flu, sore throats, and stomach upsets, or getting rid of MRSAs, boils, and warts.
Note that MGO and UMF ratings are both used to show the antibacterial strength. MGO is used by the brand Manuka Health, but it’s not usually used by the other brands of Manuka honey.
- Much more pleasant taste and smell.
- Excellent thickness and consistency; no lumps.
- Potent enough to treat a wide range of ailments.
- MGO rating.
- Despite its numerous benefits, the price tag is still quite high.
Manuka Honey Brand (UMF 15+)
Comvita has wonderful antibacterial properties that make it capable of clearing up anything from the flu to recurrent sores and ulcers. It’s also one of the best Manuka honey brands.
Indeed some people have tried it on eczema and the UMF 15+ honey easily eradicated most of the spots. Comvita should be the first choice for people who really need something to alleviate an infection that just doesn’t seem to get better.
- Marvelous antibacterial qualities
- Good enough taste
- UMF quality trademark – UMF is the industry standard
- Some jars are not filled all the way to the brim. Considering the price, this can be very frustrating
Manuka Honey Brand (KFactor 16)
Most people might shy away from Wedderspoon on account of its intimidating price tag, but its benefits are well worth the cost.
Aside from its numerous benefits, Wedderspoon also has a more than tolerable taste and a slightly minty scent that makes it a lot easier to consume. It also has incredible antibacterial potency and healing potential.
- Great taste and scent
- Non-GMO verified
- Highly potent
- Packaged in plastic jars
- KFactor: it’s an approved rating system, but it’s not the industry standard for Manuka honey.
4. Kiva Raw Manuka Honey Brand (UMF 15+)
Kiva Manuka honey is great to soothe sore throat, to get relief from flu and cold, and to relieve digestive issues. It can also be used for wound care or for a DIY beauty mask!
In addition, Kiva uses ingredients sourced from farmers that practice sustainable methods.
- This Manuka honey is certified (UMF 15+ / MGO 510+)
- It’s been harvested from the pristine and remote forest, hills and coastal areas of New Zealand
- Also, each batch has been independently tested and verified
- Packaged in plastic container (it doesn’t specify if the container is BPA free)
- It can have a strange and bitter aftertaste. Some people prefer mixing it in something else
- It may be too solid and crystallized to spread on toast or put on wounds
How Much Manuka Honey Should I Take Daily?
Manuka honey dosages are largely dependent on factors ranging from the potency of the brand to the ailment being targeted. For general immune system-boosting, choose Manuka honey with a UMF rating of 10+. The recommended dosage is one to two teaspoons daily.
However, if you’re looking to treat a specific illness, such as an infection or digestive upset, you may take a maximum of three teaspoons of UMF 16+ Manuka honey daily. Please always consult your doctor if you have a specific disease to make sure there’s no contraindication.
When it comes to the topical application of the medicinal honey, I recommend that you go for honey with a UMF rating of 20+ or higher once every 12 hours. You can cover it with gauze and bandage. This will increase its effects on the area being treated.
If you’re using Manuka honey specifically for the treatment of a skin disease (psoriasis, eczema, acne), you may apply Manuka honey onto the affected area of skin. Cover it with dressing, and let it stay for about one hour. Repeat this regimen daily.
My tip to use Manuka honey: Incorporate it into simple skincare recipes. Here’s how I use it for psoriasis: check out my recipe. If you have acne, click here to learn how to make your own face wash using Manuka honey.
Is Manuka honey safe to eat?
- Manuka honey is safe to consume for most people. But if you have diabetes, you should talk to your doctor before taking Manuka honey. Because it has a high sugar content, this could cause a spike in your blood sugar levels.
- Don’t use Manuka honey on wounds or cuts that still bleed, has pus or fluid leaking out by day three. Seek medical treatment for serious or non-healing wounds. Always ask your doctor if you can supplement your diet with Manuka honey, or if you can apply honey to a bad injury.
- Because honey can be sticky, you may cover up a cut with a bandage or some gauze.
- If you experience an allergic reaction, discontinue use. Some people are allergic to bees or pollen.
- Manuka honey may interact with chemotherapy drugs.
Is Manuka Honey Worth It?
To summarize, keep in mind that Manuka honey is in no way comparable to the condiment we use to sweeten beverages and cook with. It’s a superfood with exclusive health benefits that can only be comparable to top grade pharmaceuticals which often have adverse side effects.
In fact, Manuka honey is definitely worth the price if you choose it well. To put in another way, it depends on what you want to use it for. You can’t go wrong if you choose one of these four Manuka honey brands: Manuka Health, Comvita, Wedderspoon or Kiva. These brands offer potent and high quality honey, and you can use them for a wide range of ailments.
So if you’re unsure whether Manuka honey is real or will soon be revealed to be another fad, don’t be. It’s a wholesome kind of honey with great medicinal value for everyone.
Have you tried Manuka honey? What are the best Manuka honey brands according to you? Feel free to leave a comment here below!