Superfood Sunday – Comvita Review – The Potential Healing Properties of UMF 10+ Manuka Honey

Welcome to the fifth edition of Superfood Sunday. Today I shall be taking a closer look at honey, but not just any type of honey. I’m talking about the much talked about ‘Manuka Honey’ within the Health and Well-being industries and the potential healing properties associated with such honey . 

I personally have known about Manuka honey for a couple of years now, but was one of those products I never got around to trying, until recently when a lovely lady at Comvita agreed to send a jar of their UMF 10+ to try.

If you’re not already familiar with Manuka Honey, allow me to enlighten you on this Sunny Sunday Morning here in London, England…

What is Manuka Honey?

There are a few things which separate Manuka Honey from other Honey as I shall share with you now.

Manuka is a monofloral honey produced in remote, pollution free forests in New Zealand and Australia and is renowned for its unique flavour and special activity , meaning it is predominantly from the nectar of one plant species, this also gives it a more characteristic taste.

manuka-plant--leptospermum-scoparium

The bees feed off the Manuka plant (Leptospermum scoparium) which has delicate pink or white flowers and is native to New Zealand.

What is a UMF rating?

Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) quality mark, is a system backed by an industry quality standard, independent audits and a network of accredited laboratories around the world.

UMF stands for ‘Unique Manuka Factor’, a measure of the unique type of activity naturally present at varying levels in Honey (non-peroxide activity, NPA) made from the nectar of the Manuka bush, native to New Zealand.

UMF® is the registered name and trademark of UMF® Honey Association and can be used only by licensed users who meet set criteria which includes the monitoring and auditing of Honey quality.

The New Zealand Honey industry (UMF® Honey Association) has registered UMF® as a trademark to ensure the activity of Manuka Honey cannot be misrepresented.

To be labelled Manuka honey, at least 70% of its pollen content should come from Leptospermum scoparium.

Manuka honey has been found to have higher antibacterial properties than other honey, specifically non-peroxide antibacterial activity.

This can be tested for and is then given a rating according to the phenol standard, UMF 5 = the honey having the same non-peroxide antibacterial activity as a 5% phenol solution.

Taken from the official Comvita website, Comvita Chief Technical Officer Dr. Ralf Schlothauer further explains,

Although all honey contains peroxide activity, only authentic Manuka honey contains non-peroxide activity, aka the Unique Manuka Factor (UMF). The UMF standard is based on the phytochemicals specific to Manuka honey that gives Manuka its unique properties.“

How To Spot Genuine Manuka Honey from widely available Counterfeits  

To carry the UMF® brand, the manufacturer or owner of the brand must hold a current UMF license with UMF Honey Association.

In addition, genuine UMF Manuka Honey complies with all five of the following criteria:

  • UMF® is clearly stated on the front label.
  • It is packed into jars and labelled in New Zealand.
  • It is from a New Zealand company licensed by the UMF Honey Association to use the name UMF.
  • It has the UMF® licensee’s name on the front label.
  • It has a rating of UMF® 5+ or more.

Healing Benefits of Manuka Honey

Ongoing research and case studies suggest that Manuka Honey is said to have antibacterial healing properties that may help with the following:

  • To treat minor wounds and burns when applied topically.
  • Repair tissue damaged by infection
  • Can quickly reduce pain and inflammation once it is applied due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

Possible Health Benefits Associated with Manuka Honey

Whilst there are many claims to health benefits associated with Manuka Honey, actual proven evidence is limited on whether or not Manuka Honey has any effect on conditions like

  • High Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  •  Inflammation
  • Eye, Ear, and Sinus infections and well as
  • Gastrointestinal problems.

The use of Manuka Honey is vast becoming popular in beauty and skincare products and as such is known to work well as a natural face mask.

NOTE: If you are allergic to bees, it is advised that you stay clear of Manuka Honey for it could give you an allergic reaction! Manuka Honey should also NOT be given to infants under 12 months of age.

 My Thoughts on Comvita UMF 10+ Manuka Honey

I wasn’t sure what to expect in terms of taste but upon opening the jar you are greeted with a wonderful aroma of what can only be described as something very close to caramelised toffee!

Another thing which will strike you about Manuka Honey is the viscosity, the thickness and dark brown colour.

comvita-umf-10+-manuka-honey-thickness

The texture is very similar to treacle whilst the taste reminds me of caramel; it is very different to normal supermarket honey.

I had some with some strained yoghurt I received from Total Greek and was blown away with the combined taste.

I also like to add half a tea spoon with my favourite ginger tea drink for an early morning wake me up as I get ready for the day ahead.

comvita-umf-10+-manuka-honey-with-gold-kili-ginger-drink

It is just as delightful straight from the jar or spread on wholemeal toast but as it is an expensive product you would want to ensure you use it sparingly to get more out of it.

Comvita’s 250g jar of UMF 10+ Manuka Honey can be purchased directly from their website which is currently priced at £16.99. They also sell 500g jars of UMF 10+ priced at £26.99.

For more information on Comvita’s UMF Manuka Honey, including their different UMF Manuka Honey ratings as well as other products they have to offer, you can find them online by visiting the Comvita website, Comvita Facebook or by simply following them on Twitter.

Have you tried Manuka Honey before? If so let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below, I’m always intrigued to know what my readers and followers think 🙂

  • Anya

    Hi there, I have just tried manuka honey for the first time and wanted to see how others might have already benefited from its use. It’s interesting how it affects your digestive system when you take 2 teaspoons of this honey on an empty stomach – it sort of gives you a delicate burning sensation while melting down your throat … I would not eat it with bread or warm it up. They say it does not affect its composition but as far as I know all other honey types loose their healing properties when they are for example melted in a bowl with boiling water. Warm water is apparently ok. Boiling water is not. Have you heard anything about it? Big thank you for such a great post with lots of useful information. I appeciate the photos more than anything else because all other websites show the jar only and you presented also the precious contents of the jar 🙂

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