We caught up with Sarah Orecchia, founder of Unbeelievable Health & Erin McCann, Nutritional Therapist to talk ‘bees’! Unbeelievable Health are passionate about our stripy friends, actively supporting bee causes in a number of ways. Helping to create demand for sustainably and ethically sourced bee products, encourages more people to keep bees, and beekeepers are crucial when it comes to helping honeybee colonies to survive & thrive. They also donate a portion of their proceeds to bee efforts & research.
Bees are nothing short of miraculous, not only are they responsible for 1/3 of all we eat (plus coffee, chocolate & cotton!) but they produce an impressive array of highly nutritious substances which have a proven history of benefits for human health including honey, bee pollen, royal jelly and another exciting substance which has been the subject of over 2000 studies, Bee Propolis.
But what IS Bee Propolis?
Propolis is derived from resins honey bees collect from trees and plant buds, and due to its antibacterial properties, bees use this sticky substance to seal and sterilise their hives. In fact, beehives are known to be one of the most germ free places on earth! Propolis can be found in supplement or tincture form and is often found in skin healing creams & toothpaste.
How long has it been used for health?
Humans have been using Propolis medicinally, both internally and externally, since the Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans first started using Propolis for skin healing. From the 12th Century, Propolis was used to aid in healing throat and respiratory infections. In the first and second world war, Propolis was used in first aid to reduce skin infections and to speed healing. Modern applications of Propolis have expanded into immune support, skin care, dental care, and even cancer treatment.
What’s so great about it?
Propolis is rich in nutrients as well as flavonoids, which are responsible for its antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory actions. In addition, Propolis has been shown to regulate histamine response which can help manage hay fever symptoms (in addition, a well-functioning immune system has been shown to help reduce allergy suffering).
How can it help one avoid illness?
One area of clinical focus is the way Propolis supports the immune system by promoting the body’s natural defences and resistance to bacterial, viral and fungal infections. When microbial invaders enter the body, Propolis has been found to stimulate the production and action of macrophages, immune cells involved in the defence against bacteria & viruses and in the development of antibodies. Propolis also disrupts the proliferation of bacteria cells by inhibiting cell division and by destroying their cell structure. These actions can help reduce the life and the spread of bacteria internally and externally.
Is it worth taking on a regular basis?
With a broad spectrum of nutrients, active constituents and documented immune-modulating and anti-inflammatory actions in the body, Bee Propolis has been shown to be helpful in treating acute conditions and is also suitable to take daily to support ongoing, long term wellness, overall health and to help strengthen immunity.