Yep, along with my daily dose of healthy dirt bugs, I take a helping of bee glue, a.k.a propolis.
What is propolis?
Along with the other fruits of their labor, including honey and royal jelly, bees create propolis from the resin of trees. After gathering the resin, bees transform it into a very sticky and antimicrobial mixture that they use to patch up their hive.
Due to its antimicrobial properties, it also disinfects the hive and prevents outbreaks of viruses and bacteria. Bees even use propolis to immobilize intruders (source). So basically, propolis is bee duct tape!
Bees living in hollow trees will coat the inside of the cavity thickly with propolis. After an experiment, researchers at The University of Minnesota found that bees housed in a nest box coated with propolis had lower bacterial loads in their body and also ‘quieter’ immune systems compared to the colonies with no propolis coating.
So, although bees never eat propolis, this unique substance plays a key role in their immune system. Through the same properties, propolis can boost our immune system and overall wellness.
Why I take propolis
General immune system support – Propolis supports the immune system in various ways. First, the antimicrobial properties suppress harmful bacteria and infections. Further, it actually stimulates the immune system and raises the body’s natural resistance (source).
I diligently take my dose of propolis during cold and flu season. I can’t, however, credit any one part of my diet or supplement regime for keeping me healthy (not a single cold this year! *knocks on wood*). I do take a double dose of propolis if I wake up and feel something coming on, and I will feel better the next day.
Acne – Used internally and externally, propolis may improve skin and reduce breakouts. One study (discussed here) showed that propolis showed activity against the bacteria primarily responsible for breakouts. I suggest taking propolis internally (I explain how to take it at the end of this post).
To use propolis externally, dab propolis honey directly on the pimple (do a test first to see if your skin reacts) and leave it on for 5 – 15 minutes. I also use the propolis honey as a mask, applying a thin layer over my entire face and rinsing it off after 15 minutes.
Improved energy – I can testify to this point! Many individuals report “Improved energy” by taking propolis daily. Although this is a subjective statement and I am not aware of any clinical research backing it up, I’ve found this true in my own experience.
After I started taking propolis daily, I experienced a higher sense of productivity – a general “get ‘er done!” attitude. It wasn’t anything like a caffeine buzz, but just a very gentle little boost of energy throughout the day. With that said, I am very sensitive to all foods and supplements so my experience will not necessarily be your experience.
Other health benefits of propolis
Parasites – Research shows the potential use of propolis for parasite treatment. One preliminary trial showed that those who took propolis experienced a 52 to 60 percent rate of successful elimination of the parasite giardiasis (source).
Since parasites are difficult to diagnose (symptoms frequently look like other health problems), parasites pose a challenging and unexpectedly widespread health issue. Propolis, due to its soothing and immune-supporting factors, can be generally to support health even if you aren’t sure of a parasite infection. Additionally, it can usually be combined with other parasite treatments.
Canker sores – Many people experience quick relief from canker sores by applying a drop of propolis tincture directly to the sore 2-3 times per day.
Endometriosis – a quickly growing number of women struggle with endometriosis, a disorder where the tissue lining the uterus grows outside of the uterus into other organs of the body. It causes pain, fatigue, bowel issues, infertility and more. In one study, women with endometriosis took propolis to increase fertility. Those taking propolis had a pregnancy success rate of 60% compared to 20% taking the placebo (source).
Cavities – In an animal study, propolis cut cavity rates by up to 60% and partially impairs the enzyme that causes dental plaque. All-natural propolis toothpaste (it contains “purified water, baking soda, xanthan gum, propolis extract, grapefruit oil, clove oil, tea tree oil”) provides the powerful cavity-fighting compounds directly to the teeth. You can also dab propolis tincture directly on the cavities a few times per day. For a full protocol to reverse tooth decay and cavities, I recommend the book Cure Tooth Decay.
How to take propolis
There are a few options for taking propolis:
- I take this organic propolis and raw honey blend. A general dose suggestion is 1/2 teaspoon twice per day (I take it morning and afternoon). I eat it straight from the jar – just scoop out a serving and swallow it. It tastes sweet – a bit like molasses – and delicious! It can also be applied topically for acne.
- You can also take propolis tincture. Mix 5 drops into a little bit of honey and swallow. Take 3 times per day. I find this method more time consuming and messy.
- Finally, there are propolis capsules, an easy and mess-free method but you can’t use it topically. Take 1-2 capsules twice per day.
Would you eat bee glue? Have you had success with using propolis for any health issue?
WOW! Lots of asinine comments in here. Hasn’t anyone ever heard of Google?
And stop asking someone who is essentially an online blogger for medical advice. Only a fool would reply to those questions!
Sir, I assure you that most of these claims are true. I was involved in testing propolis on rats many years ago. It is truly amazing stuff. Our ancesters used it for thousands of years.
As long as you don’t eat Gorilla Glue, you’re good to go! XD
I used to bee propolis to get rid of a skin cancer on my forehead! This stuff is incredible!
Hello, This might be our new saving grace during the covid-19 crisis. I have beehives and have been eating propolis/honey mixture daily. Can’t hurt right. It is anti-viral also. Live on!!!!!
Our whole entire family and friends used Propolis throwout the Pandemic and continue using it as a supplement and an anti-virial protection.
As a beekeeper I’ve supplied propolis tincture to people that have skin sores that won’t heal, it will heal them, some people have been diagnosed with skin cancer and it healed the sores and I don’t know if it ever came back.
My husband & I began taking bee propolis in April 2017 after finding a book `Propolis Power Plus` by Carlson Wade/Joan A. Friedrich. Typically I would get a cold or sinus infection each winter. That hasn’t happened since 2017. My husband got colds & sinus infection often but I can count on one hand the number of times since then. And never symptoms for more than a couple of days. We are firm believers in bee propolis!
How did you use the propolis in the sinus?
Wayne, we take propolis capsules. Nothing goes in the sinus directly.
The traditional Medical graduate is bound by their employer and this leads to bias towards employer administration rules. These rules are biased towards “The Bottom Line”. So directing anyone towards this unethical medical community is nothing more than a criminal who practices medicine not by oath but by greed.
I’m a beekeeper. The pictures in your article are of beeswax, not propolis.
I would like to share this but your share feature is not working. I need the link to this article on this page. I’m having a hard time finding it.
As a long time septic about “folk cures” , I have been a beekeeper for the last fifteen years, and have learned about “propolis”, I found propolis works wonders on skin conditions, a lady who had a cancerous growth removed from her head and calf the wound would not heal, I gave her some propolis and the sores healed, much to the wonder to her oncologist, she attributed to “positive attitude towards her cancer”.
Can you please tell me what raw propolis chunks are supposed to taste like?
I trap propolis and make a tincture, both with alcohol and an oil so it can used topically. Raw it is an earthy flavor and very sticky!
http://Www.buttsbees.com and http://www.etsy.com/WonderBeeOrganics
I am a organic beekeeper. I love propolis and it has so many uses! Thanks for this article!
I’ve ordered the raw honey and propolis. However I’ve see the raw propolis on eBay. Can this be eaten? I can’t find much information on whether I can eat bee glue raw.
Please I purchased an alcoholic propolis. Can I use it as in your directives?
Hello. I have just started to use Bee Propollen in November 2020. Well, since I am still new to this supplement, I will revert after my first bottle. But it seems to serve the purpose I am consuming the supplement: fertility, overall health, and skincare.