Honeybees gather propolis, a resin, from tree bark and leaves. They combine this resin with nectar, creating a mix of wax, pollen and bee bread. It also contains about 10% essential Oils.
They then use this substance to seal their hives, protecting it from outside contaminants. They also use propolis at the entrance to the hive to sterilize themselves as they come and go.
The main components of propolis are resin (50%-70%), oil and wax (30%-50%), pollen (5%-10%) and other chemical compounds including: amino acids, minerals, sugars, vitamins B, C and E, flavonoids, phenol, as well as aromatic compounds.
Propolis has been known for centuries. The ancient Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians were aware of the healing properties of propolis and made extensive use of it as medicine.
While propolis is just now enjoying a rediscovery, it is said that Persians described propolis as a drug against eczema and rheumatism.
Early research on Propolis:
The development of research on propolis was strictly connected with the development of chemistry. Examples include studies of the chemistry of bioflavonoids, (antioxidant, anti-inflammatory), found in Propolis. Flavonoids are a diverse group of phytochemicals that are produced by various plants in high quantities. Another example is glycans. Glycans-also known as carbohydrates, saccharides, or simply sugars-are molecules made up of different combinations of different sugar units, such as glucose. Every molecule, cell or organism that interacts with a cell, must do so through these cell-surface sugar structures.
Propolis is an excellent natural antibiotic and immune system booster.
Properties of Propolis:
It is naturally:
Synthetic antibiotics carry with them side effects – propolis, a natural antibiotic, has no such side effects. Propolis has also been shown to fight bacterial strains that have become resistant to synthetic antibiotics.
Content of Propolis:
Propolis contains more than 300 components, of which the major ones are triterpenoids with a relative concentration of 74.0%; steroids(9.8%), and diterpenoids(7.9%).
However, the plant origin and the collection region can substantially affect the chemical composition of propolis.
The pharmacological potential of propolis has been very well investigated and reported in the literature, as evidenced by the large number of related studies.
Propolis was found to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells in a concentration-dependent manner through apoptosis.
Propolis also contains the following:
Based on studies there are several therapeutic properties in flavonoids, including anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-cancer, anti-bacterial and anti-allergic properties. Quercetin is a good example.
Because of their ability to chelate metal ions such as iron and copper, they inhibit the production of free radicals. The antibacterial effect of flavonoids is by inhibiting the synthesis of DNA or RNA in bacteria and their anti-inflammatory activity by inhibiting the synthesis of nitric oxide, glycoxygenase, lipoxygenase, protein kinases and prostaglandin.
Of the fourteen minerals required by the body, propolis contains them all, except for sulphur. It contains rare elements, such as: Calcium, Magnesium, Aluminium, Carbon, Iron, Manganese, Nickel, and Zinc.
Glucose-6-phosphatase, Acid phosphatase, Adenosine triphosphatase, Succinic dehydrogenase
Acetophenone, p-acetophenolacetophenone, Dihydroxy-acetope9i9inone, Methylacetophenone, Hept-5-en-2-one, 6-methylketone
Except for vitamin K, propolis has all the known Vitamins. According to studies, vitamins E, C, B1(Thiamine), B2(Riboflavin), and B6 have been identified in propolis.
Like the other bee products- royal jelly and bee pollen, propolis also contains several unidentified compounds which work together synergistically to create a perfectly balanced, nutritive substance.
Propolis’ high levels of bioflavonoids stimulates white blood cells to produce interferon. This greatly increases the body’s resistance to disease. Propolis also curtails the growth of protozoa and is therefore an effective treatment for some intestinal parasites.
Propolis has been used in the past internally to combat Gastro-intestinal infections, bacterial and fungal infections, sore throats, colds, malaria, cancer, HIV, peptic ulcers, ulcers in the mouth, ulcerative colitis, parasitic infections, tuberculosis and candidacies
At Bee-utiful we use the propolis that our bees make in our hives to preserve our skin-and body care products.
Application of Propolis:
Propolis is made into a tincture, to be taken as a direct throat spray, or in a bit of water, for internal use. It is great to spray as soon as you feel a cold coming on, for cold sores, parasites, as a general tonic, or it can be sprayed onto wounds or diabetic sores.
Propolis in skincare smoothes out wrinkles and has antiaging properties. A huge role is played here by antioxidants such as phenolic compounds and flavonoids which neutralizes an unfavourable effect of free radicals on the skin.
Bee-utiful Botanicals https://www.beeutifulhealth.co.za/product/multi-purpose-balm-eczema-balm/
The Multi-Purpose Balm is one of our best sellers from our Beeswax Products range, and a must for any respectable household’s first aid kit. This amazing ointment really helps and works for almost anything! We have had fantastic results in treating eczema, psoriasis, acne, sun damage, cold sores, rashes, insect bites, burns, nappy rash, bed sores and many more ailments, with this antiseptic balm. The combination of propolis, beeswax, tea tree and lavender essential oils, makes the perfect combination that is extremely healing. We’ve received positive feedback from customers about using the Multi-Purpose Propolis balm for leg ulcers, shingles, warts and boils. Diabetic sufferers who have problems with their legs will also benefit from rubbing this on the skin on the legs to heal sores.
All of our Beeswax products contain Propolis, for its anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Our healing and anti-bacterial balms include Acne Moisturiser, Night Cream Mask, Heel Balm and Stretchmark Cream and Baby Bum Cream.
Propolis is nature’s miracle ingredient!