Note, there are 3 different species of Myrtaceae growing in Australia and New Zealand known as Ti-tree: the Australian Tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia), the New Zealand Manuka (Leptospermum scoparium) and Kanuka (Kunzea ericoides).
Early european migrants produced a tea from Manuka leaves (hence it's name). Manuka honey can be eaten, used in cooking or used externally.
Analgesic: Anesthetic: Antiasthmatic: Antibacterial: Antifungal:
Anti-inflammatory: Antimicrobial: Antiparasitic: Antipruritic:
Antiseptic: Antiviral: Antizymotic: Deodorant: Diaphoretic: Exanthematous: Expectorant: Fungicidal: Germicidal: Immune stimulant: Insecticide: Nervine: Sedative: Vulnerary.
L. scoparium has a range of therapeutic actions and medicinal uses similar to Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree Oil).
The Maori people used the leaves and bark for a wide range of ailments. A decoction of the leaves was drunk for urinary complaints and as a febrifuge (to reduce fever). The steam from leaves boiled in water was inhaled for head colds. A decoction was prepared from the leaves and bark and the warm liquid was rubbed on stiff muscles and aching joints. It was also used as a diuretic, a sedative, a painkiller, for inflammation of the breasts, and for healing fractures. Boiled bark was used to relieve constipation, as a gargle and for bathing sore eyes. The emollient white gum, called pai Manuka, was given to nursing babies and also used to treat scalds and burns. Chewing the bark is said to have a relaxing effect and it enhances sleep. Fresh sap was taken as a blood purifier, seed capsules were boiled and the fluid used externally for bruises and inflammation, and internally for diarrhoea and dysentery. Raw seed capsules were chewed for colic, and when powdered, used in a poultice to dry and heal open wounds or running sores.
Manuka Oil is rapidly gaining popularity in the field of Aromatherapy. Showing to be beneficial for people with over sensitive nervous systems and those who suffer from stress and anxiety, conditions that often manifest themselves in allergic reactions. Manuka Oil is very effective for many skin problems. It strengthens the psyche and at the same time stabilizes the skin, it makes it more resistant, because it is relaxing for the skin nerves as well as cell activating and regenerating for the outer skin layers. The skin doesn't overreact constantly, - it doesn't come out in a rash so fast. Therefore Manuka is helpful for sensitive skin, especially itching, acne, badly healing skin, inclination to fungal infections, ulcers, bedsores and infections.
Acute toxicity can occur if essential oil is administered in amounts above the stated daily dose. It can, in some individuals, produce a mild irritancy to the skin but has a low irritancy compared to Australian tea tree oil. The variability in Manuka essential oils suggests caution in their usage, as does the fact that the oils have not been tested for toxicity.
A gas chromatographic analysis of Manuka Oil showed it contains monoterpene hydrocarbons, a-cubebene, b-pinene, r-cymene, g-terpinene, a-copaene, b-caryophyllene, aromadendrene, calamanene, limonene, and myrcene; the oxide 1,8-cineole; a terpene alcohol, linalool; and esters. Tri-ketones, triterpenoids and flavonoids have also been isolated in East Cape Chemotype Manuka Oil.
The 1,8-cineole when taken internally is a stimulating expectorant and when applied topically it is a mild aesthetic and antiseptic. Limonene also has an expectorant and antiviral action. Pinene, also found in cypress and pine oils, and cymene, found in thyme oil, have a powerful antiseptic action. Linalool has effective sedative effects and is rapidly absorbed through the skin and nasal mucosa.
Manuka Oil has been shown to treat or aid in the treatment of the following:
Research has confirmed that Manuka Oil (Leptospermum Scoparium)
has higher antibacterial and antifungal activity than Tea
Tree Oil (Melaleuca Alternifolia) particularly against
bacteria such as Staphylococcus and Streptococcus and Pathogenic
Fungi, . Perhaps most interesting with the current emergence of
strains of antibiotic-resistant bacteria is that laboratory tests
have indicated Manuka Oils effectiveness as a treatment against
some antibiotic-resistant organisms. Manuka oil has shown to be
effective in laboratory tests against 39 separate micro-organisms
(listed below), in particular, streptococci and staphylococcal
bacteria and fungi that affect the skin.
Gram Positive Bacteria
Staphylococcus aureas, Staphylococcus aureas methacillin resistant, Staphylococcus epidermidis
Streptococcus faecalis, Streptococcus agalactiae
Gram Negative Bacteria
Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Pseudomonas fluorscens
Trichophyton mentagrophytes, Trichophyton rubrum
Instructions and Dosage
Internal: - Adult dose 1-3 drops per day via ingestion or inhalation. External: - 2-4 drops in the bath or placed directly on affected area.
Mild Sunburn: - Apply cold water to remove heat and gently
rub manuka cream into affected areas to help relieve stinging
and later itching.
Fungal infections, Athletes Foot & Nail Bed Infections: - Apply a few drops of Manuka Oil with a cotton ball, twice daily, or alternatively use manuka cream. Continue to apply for 5 days after visible signs of infection have gone.
Itching Scalp and Dandruff: - Add 10 drops of Manuka Oil to a normal amount of shampoo and massage into wet hair and scalp. Leave for five minutes before rinsing.
Cuts, Scratches and Abrasions: - Apply Manuka Oil, or alternatively use a manuka cream.
Oily Skin and Pimples: - Wash affected area daily then apply Manuka Oil as a spot treatment for problem areas, or use manuka cream as a complete treatment.
Skin Irritation, Chafing and Rashes: - Wash regularly then apply manuka cream twice daily as required.
Foot and Body Odour: - For foot odour, rub Manuka oil or cream into feet 3 times per week. Also protects against fungal infection.
Insect Bites and Stings: - Apply Manuka oil or cream to help relieve itching and inflammation and prevent infection.
Aching Muscles and Joints: - Massage Manuka oil into tired and aching muscles and joints.
Manuka honey, produced when honeybees gather the nectar from its flowers, is distinctively flavoured, darker and richer in taste than clover honey and has strong antibacterial and antifungal properties. The finest quality Manuka honey with the most potent antimicrobial properties is produced from hives placed in wild, uncultivated areas with abundant growth of Manuka bushes.
Honey has a high sugar content and produces an antibacterial molecule called hydrogen peroxide, which can been used as a disinfectant. One particular type of honey known as Manuka Honey is especially effective in treating infected wounds and other skin conditions because it contains an additional antibacterial component known as the 'Unique Manuka Factor' or UMF. Manuka Honey's healing properties are so powerful that scientists now believe it is more effective in treating certain health conditions than antibiotics and other traditional forms of medicine.
Unlike the days when honey was used as a natural remedy, medical professionals now know that many health conditions are caused by the presence of infectious bacteria. Over the course of the past few decades, there has been a significant overuse of antibiotics by doctors. In addition, bacteria has the ability to mutate and become resistant to elements that are attempting to destroy them, such as antibiotics. Manuka Honey contains extremely powerful antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. To date, there have been no types of bacteria that have shown a resistance to it. Manuka Honey destroys bacteria in a different manner in which antibiotics do by drawing water out of the bacteria, making it impossible for the bacteria to survive. As a result, wound dressings containing Manuka Honey have been successful in treating life-threatening infections involving hard-to-kill bacteria such as MRSA and VRE. This has been viewed as a major breakthrough in the health care industry.
The enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide in honey is destroyed when honey is exposed to heat or light. However, Manuka Honey is stable so there is no concern about it losing its healing properties in storage. Manuka Honey provides a more potent antibacterial action, diffusing into the depth of infected tissues, more so than the hydrogen peroxide from other types of honey.
Medical Uses for Manuka Honey
Manuka Honey has natural antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties making it one of the most valuable substances for treating a variety of different symptoms. Manuka Honey has been known to treat health conditions such as Eczema, Psoriasis, arthritis, wounds, burns, insect bites, infections, ringworm, athlete's foot, jock itch, nail fungus, etc. Research also shows that Manuka Honey reduces malodor and eliminates scaring.
There are a few major differences between ordinary honey and Manuka Honey.
Other benefits to using Manuka Honey for medicinal purposes are as follows:
Manuka Oil is extremely useful as a household disinfectant. For an antiseptic action in the laundry, add half a teaspoon of oil to each wash load. Manuka is a nursery tree and often forms large areas that protect regenerating forest seedlings and form a shelter for native orchids and other small plants. Manuka wood is red coloured, hard and durable. It has been used for fencing, for tool handles and as a firewood. It is used as a flavouring and antiseptic agent in mouthwashes. It can also be used to purify drinking water.