In this article we will cover the endless health boosting properties of propolis. This resin is among the holy trinity of bee products (honey, royal jelly, propolis). All 3 of them have been used throughout the centuries as medicine simply because they contain ingredients that are powerful and effective!
CAUTION: Medical Disclaimer
Table of Contents
- 1 Herbal Name and Characteristics
- 2 About Bee Propolis
- 3 What is Bee Propolis
- 4 Benefits and properties of Bee Propolis
- 5 When and how to take it
- 6 Safety and side effects
- 7 Cycling
- 8 Dosage
- 9 Closing thoughts
Herbal Name and Characteristics
- Name: Bee Propolis
- Pin Yin: N/A,
- Latin: N/A or Apis mellifera L.
- Taste: Intense taste, slightly sweet
- Color: black (resin).
- Constitution: N/A
- Builds: N/A
About Bee Propolis
Bee Propolis is one of those foods that I have been using ever since I was a little boy in Greece. I clearly remember a line of bee products coming out, each one for a specific purpose and its own set of benefits: Bee Pollen, Bee Propolis, honey and Royal Jelly. My family was using a tinctured Bee Propolis for open wounds, sore throat and canker sores and I know for a fact that it works. In the last years, I even used it (after consulting my dental hygienist and in combination with proper dental practices) to treat a severe case of gut inflammation and was really happy with the result.
For the next couple of decades, Bee Propolis was a bit hard to get your hands on but I am glad that it is back on the shelves as its health benefits extend further than just healing skin tissue and wounds.
It can support the immune system and protect you from colds and the flu, especially under stressful conditions. It is one of the supplements that I highly recommend to shield yourself from viruses and to keep up with the demands of a hectic lifestyle.
Below you will find more details about this food, its benefits, side effects and precautions you need to know before using it.
What is Bee Propolis
Propolis is a substance secreted by bees for multiple purposes. It can be used to repair the hive, sanitize, disinfect and to mummify dead animals. This is something that the Egyptians found very useful for their own techniques.
Its name comes from the Greek Pro, which means ‘for/ in favor’ and Polis, which means ‘city’. So Propolis would mean ‘defending the city’ due to its ability to create a healthy environment and protect the human body from external infections and diseases (plus is used to build the bee hive for external protection).
It has been used for centuries from not only the Egyptians but also from the Romans, Assyrians and the Greeks to treat open wounds, abscesses and prevent infections dating back to 350 B.C. at the time of Aristotle.
Propolis is 50% resin, 25% wax, 5% Pollen and contains fatty acids and essential oils. It has strong anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-oxidant qualities and also contains chrysin, a flavonoid component which is rumored to boost testosterone when injected in the testicles. Chrysin is also used as an anti-aromatase agent by anabolic steroid users in bodybuilding.
Propolis, just like most bee products, must be 100% natural, created in unpolluted areas and needs to be harvested from beekeepers without any other interference. It is just as sensitive as Royal Jelly, with which you can combine to create a potent elixir in either alcohol or glycerin.
Benefits and properties of Bee Propolis
Summarizing the many benefits of Bee Propolis:
- It can promote dental health by preventing the formation of dental plaque. This is done through inhibition of the enzymes that create glucans from sucrose.
- Is a strong antioxidant and has anti-aging properties by neutralizing free radicals.
- It has strong anti-bacterial and anti-microbial action and it can prevent the growth of certain bacteria by creating a halo around the microorganism.
- According to medicalnewstoday.com, the trials were applied to the following bacteria:
- Streptococcus mutans (dental caries)
- Candida albicans (vaginal infections)
- Salmonella typhi (salmonellosis)
- Helicobacter pylori (stomach ulcer)
- Saccharomyces cerevisiae (opportunistic role in asepsis of Aids sufferers, leukemia…)
- Can be used as a natural antibiotic instead of synthetic antibiotics which tend to be toxic and ineffective after a certain time of use.
- Has a non-addictive and mild stimulant action.
- It can accelerate healing of open wounds and can also be used on canker sores and sore throat.
- Due to its antioxidant and antibiotic action it can support the immune system and protect against viruses and the flu.
- Has strong anti-inflammatory activity and can also be used as analgesic when applied topically.
When and how to take it
Tincture: This is one convenient way to take Propolis. Just add a few drops in your mouth and let it dissolve. Then you can swallow it.
The tincture can either have a base of glycerin or alcohol and it can come with a dropper or in spray form.
I use an alcoholic tincture (60% alcohol) as medicine for open wounds, canker sores and infections. It burns like hell the first couple of seconds but after that, it creates a layer that allows for faster healing. It works like a charm.
The alcoholic tincture can also be taken in a glass of water. Wait a couple of minutes for the alcohol to evaporate. Then you can gargle with it or just drink it.
Capsules: It also comes in capsules but beware that most companies sell capsules full of bee pollen with just traces of propolis. Check the label to be sure that you are using propolis.
Resin: You could potentially buy propolis resin from a beekeeper and make your own tincture or capsules.
You can also add the propolis to honey and take it with Royal Jelly.
The best times to take it would be:
- In the morning on an empty stomach,
- When you are sick or have a sore throat,
- Before exercise.
Safety and side effects
You must not take Propolis if you are allergic to bee products. Other than that, there are no known side effects and it is safe to take for up to 3 months.
It is not advised to take Propolis for more than 3 months as it contains antibiotics and can damage the flora of your digestive tract.
The best approach is to take Bee Propolis on an as-needed-basis (for example, when it is flu season or feel sick).
You should not take Propolis if you:
- Are allergic to bee products or have asthma/allergies as it can potentially be deadly.
- Have any kind of bleeding conditions/disorders as it can increase the risk of bleeding.
- Are scheduled for an operation, organ transplant or you just underwent one. Certain ingredients may interfere with the sedation used during surgery, rejection of the organ, interfere with healing and/or cause internal bleeding.
The best thing you can do before taking any herb supplement is to test it. If you want to be safe while using herbs I strongly urge you to read my other article on how to test an herb for allergies and intolerances.
Contraindications or interactions with other medication/substances
Avoid using this product if you have bee allergies or have any medical condition or take any kind of medication without consulting with your doctor first.
Special Precautions & Warnings
Since there are not enough studies performed to determine the full safety of this product, pregnant women or breastfeeding women should avoid using this product.
Use for up to 1 to 3 months and then take 4 weeks off. Repeat cycle after that.
While there are no side effects or toxicity associated with long-term consumption, I would not use any herb/substance for long periods of time without a break in order to keep them being effective and protect the body from accumulation of other toxins unrelated to the herb/substance itself.
Over the past 20 years I have experimented with literally hundreds of herbs, supplements (and other natural products) and was finally able to discover the right doses for amazing results.
If you wish to learn more about the dosages that I use with my clients for different purposes (better health, hormonal balance, stress management, testosterone boost and more) or how I combine this herb/supp with others, leave a comment below or reach out to me for a consultation through the “Hire me” link.
Propolis is yet another amazing bee product that has multiple health boost properties and can especially support dental health. It also has anti-fungal properties so it can be used for mouth sores and other types of wounds for accelerated healing. I consider this resin to be an important part of any household’s pharmacy for a more natural healing approach and I highly recommend it!
Have you used propolis before? What was your experience with it? What is your favorite application? Let the world know by leaving a comment below!
I hope you enjoyed this article as much as I enjoyed writing it. Make sure you share this article with the people you love by using one of the social media buttons below. If you have any comments or questions, leave them in a comment below and I will answer back asap. Until next time, live your life: strong, healthy and free!
by Nick Sigma
CWC, EH, E-YRT200