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What Are the Benefits of Propolis?

Updated November 21, 2016

Strengthening the immune system helps protect against signs of ageing, certain illnesses and general feelings of ill health. Attempts to find definitive medicinal cures for illness and disease in the scientific community has gone on for decades; sometimes with great success, but at other times merely producing disappointment. There is one possible remedy, known for years but not widely utilised---the natural product Propolis. The benefits of this substance are obvious to those familiar with it.

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What is Propolis?

Propolis is a natural substance made from the sap of specific trees like poplar, willow, birch and horse chestnut. This sap has strong antibiotic qualities that work to protect the trees from infections. Bees also take the sap, metabolise it and return to the hive where the other bees become immunised through direct contact. Scientists are testing Propolis as treatment for several known illnesses and conditions of immunity in patients.

Benefits of Propolis

Taken as a daily supplement, Propolis is reported by many users as giving them better physical and mental health benefits. Use in topical form can intensify regeneration of injured tissue on wounds, burns or infected skin areas. For centuries the substance was used in many countries as an antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral treatment. In remote areas and less advanced countries, Propolis is used as a substitute for penicillin and other common antibiotics.


Propolis was discovered and forgotten by several civilisations throughout time. Early tribes are thought to have understood its benefits, but the first recorded mention of it was by the early Greeks who also gave it its name that translates as "defence." During the Middle Ages in Europe, Propolis was considered folk medicine and shunned by all but peasants. In the mid 1970s, Danish and French scientists discovered it again and reintroduced its conceptual use back to the world.

Side Effects

Propolis is considered a non-toxic substance, but as with most medications, occasional side effects are possible. Certain individuals using Propolis have experienced allergic reactions like skin rashes, swelling, eczema, redness or fever. Some individuals with allergies to bee-related products are also warned to avoid its use.


Propolis use has many naturally curative and preventive applications. With the number of healthful benefits available through using it, this natural substance could gain prominence in the medical world.

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