Propolis is a resinous substance that is collected from a variety of plants by bees. Royal jelly is a thick, milky substance that is secreted by the worker bees to feed the queen and her larvae. Both propolis and royal jelly have a long history of medicinal use and can be consumed fresh or taken in supplement form. Propolis and royal jelly supplements may cause unwanted side effects, however. Talk to your healthcare practitioner before taking them.
Propolis Information and Benefits
Bees use propolis together with bees wax in order to build bee hives. Propolis contains a wide variety of nutrients including flavonoids, vitamins, minerals and enzymes. According to Medline Plus, propolis demonstrates antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. Propolis is purported to help treat abscesses, acne, aging, allergies, minor burns, nose and throat cancer, gastrointestinal problems, halitosis, and inflammation of the mucous membranes of the mouth and throat. However, these uses are based primarily on historical use and not scientific fact.
Propolis for Enhanced Immunity and Skin Health
Propolis is a useful immunity boosting aid. According to NaturalNews website, it stimulates the formation of antibodies that help build up an ongoing immunity to a variety of illnesses. Propolis also stimulates phagocytosis, which is the process where white blood cells attack and destroy unhealthy bacteria. Due to its immunity-boosting properties, propolis is purported to both prevent and treat the flu, tuberculosis, the common cold, and numerous acute infections. In addition, topical application of propolis is used to help treat oral and genital herpes, reduce pain, promote wound healing and prevent secondary skin infections.
Royal Jelly Information
According to "Nursing Herbal Remedies Handbook," royal jelly contains amino acids, sugars, fats and various minerals and vitamins; it is an especially rich source of pantothenic acid. Similar to propolis, royal jelly has antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties. Royal jelly also appears to demonstrate anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor activity, and it reduces high cholesterol and high blood pressure levels.
Royal Jelly Benefits
Preliminary research suggests that royal jelly can help promote the formation of healthy bones and thereby help prevent and treat osteoporosis. Royal jelly also enhances the production of collagen, which is the substance that is responsible for keeping the skin elastic and wrinkle free. As such, both oral and topical royal jelly may promote healthy, youthful looking skin. Royal jelly is also used to improve sexual performance and reduce menopausal symptoms and to treat bronchial asthma, liver disease, kidney disease, insomnia, pancreatitis, stomach ulcers, bone fractures and skin disorders. These uses are based primarily on anecdotal evidence. Thus, more research needs to be done to confirm the efficacy of these claims.
- "Prescription for Nutritional Healing"; Phyllis Balch; 2003
- Medline Plus: Propolis
- Natural News: Bee Propolis Stops Tumors from Neurofibromatosis and Cancer
- Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: Royal Jelly
- "Nursing Herbal Medicine Handbook;" Lippincott Williams and Wilkins; 2005