Propolis obtained from beehives is touted as a treatment for numerous ailments – the common cold, peptic ulcers, coughs, tuberculosis, toothaches, cold sores (those wounds that usually “grow” at mouth corners and we attribute them to malaria), genital herpes, as well as nose and throat cancer.
It is also said that it can be used in the treatment of burns and wounds and where it is used, it quickens healing. But can propolis be used to effectively treat the above-mentioned disease conditions? What are the health benefits of propolis?
Dr Grace Nambatya, director of research at Natural Chemotherapeutics Laboratory, ministry of Health, says because propolis is a “natural antibiotic, it can be used anywhere where there is bacteria”. She lists conditions such as cough, peptic ulcers and tooth infections as those that can be treated with “formulations containing propolis”.
Other than being a natural antibiotic, propolis has been shown to possess antiseptic, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. It helps to always have a bottle handy in your medicine cabinet…