PROPOLIS A POTENT NATURAL ANTIOXIDANT
Propolis is a wonder from nature that is not only important in keeping the honey bees and their hives safe from external agents but because of its numerous properties as an antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory agent, it has unparalleled benefits for human health too.
What Is Propolis?
Propolis is a resinous material made by bees that serves to keep the beehive sealed shut for protection against harmful external influences. It is essentially a mixture of extracts obtained from saps, buds, flowers, and other plant sources combined with beeswax and other substances produced by the bees. It is rich in a number of vitamins, minerals, and a number of active compounds such as flavonoids and phenolic acids. (Braakhuis 2019)
Going out in the sun exposes us to harmful UV rays on a daily basis. These rays damage the skin cells by causing the production of reactive oxygen species. This results in the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, pigmentation, and other signs of aging.
Propolis contains a number of naturally occurring phenolic compounds such as pinocembrin, pinostrobin, chrysin, galangin, etc. These help in limiting oxidative stress by acting as a scavenger for reactive oxygen species. The topical application of propolis promotes the longevity of cells of the skin and the scalp and prevents sun damage. This property, in particular, makes propolis an indispensable addition to beauty and skincare routines as it ensures healthy and youthful skin. (Galeotti et al. 2018).
Heals The Skin
Our skin goes through different types of damage every day that may be in the form of micro-injuries, sun exposure, and whatnot. Products derived from bees have long been known and used for their healing properties. The same goes for propolis. The chrysin present in propolis relieves pain that may be associated with wounds and injuries. Propolis is known to stimulate wound healing in tissues by encouraging angiogenesis and tissue regeneration by fibroblasts. It also causes the production of collagen and GAGs such as chondroitin sulfate and dermatan sulfate that not only help with wound healing after surgery or injury but also help in keeping the skin plump and hydrated. (Kurek-Górecka et al. 2020).
The various phenolic compounds in propolis make it a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. Caffeic acid, its ester, and other active compounds in propolis help fight off both acute and chronic inflammation by inhibiting the production of mediators of inflammation such as leukotrienes. For the skin and scalp, in particular, this prevents redness, swelling, and flaring up of acne and other skin conditions such as rosacea. (Simona Martinotti 2015).
For both humans and bees, propolis serves as a potent antimicrobial agent with activities against a variety of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. Studies have shown that propolis has activity against gram-positive bacteria such as S.Aureus, B.cereus, Enterococcus, etc, and fungi particularly the Candida species that are common causes of infections of the skin and the urogenital tract. Propolis limits the growth of these organisms and helps fight of infections caused by them. (Wagh 2013).
- Braakhuis, Andrea. 2019. “Evidence on the Health Benefits of Supplemental Propolis.” Nutrients 11 (11). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11112705.
- Galeotti, Fabio, Francesca Maccari, Alfredo Fachini, and Nicola Volpi. 2018. “Chemical Composition and Antioxidant Activity of Propolis Prepared in Different Forms and in Different Solvents Useful for Finished Products.” Foods 7 (3). https://doi.org/10.3390/foods7030041.
- Kurek-Górecka, Anna, Michał Górecki, Anna Rzepecka-Stojko, Radosław Balwierz, and Jerzy Stojko. 2020. “Bee Products in Dermatology and Skin Care.” Molecules 25 (3). https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25030556.
- Simona Martinotti, Elia Ranzato. 2015. “Propolis: A New Frontier for Wound Healing?” Burns & Trauma 3. https://doi.org/10.1186/s41038-015-0010-z.
- Wagh, Vijay D. 2013. “Propolis: A Wonder Bees Product and Its Pharmacological Potentials.” Advances in Pharmacological Sciences 2013. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/308249.
AS FOUND IN