Manuka Oil is native to New Zealand and it was used in pre-European times by the traditional New Zealanders and is still popular. Manuka tree, 'Leptospermum scoparium', is a member of the Myrtaceae family and Manuka Oil is an extract from the Melaleuca and Leptospermum. Manuka is often confused with tea tree, and tea tree oil, though it comes from Melaleuca plants.
The New Zealanders have been using Manuka Oil, its bark, sap, teas, and poultice for treating health conditions. Historically, the leaves of Manuka tree was made into a decoction and drunk for urinary complaints. The steam from leaves boiled in water was inhaled for head colds. A decoction of the leaves and bark was rubbed on stiff muscles and aching joints. Nursing babies were given the emollient white gum of Manuka and also used to treat scalds and burns. And chewing Manuka bark had a relaxing effect and enhanced the sleep of the natives.
Manuka Oil which grows in the remote East Cape of New Zealand has active constituents namely Trichetones, Flavesone, Leptospermone, Isoleptospermone. Manuka exhibits higher antibacterial and antifungal activity than its sister Tea Tree Oil against bacteria such as Staphylococcus and Streptococcus and Pathogenic Fungi.
Manuka has potent antimicrobial characteristics. Because of its unique stream distillation method, Tiketone level is achieved. Research has revealed the synergetic effects of Triketones and Sesquiterpenes of Manuka Oil. Little wonder then this product is widely used in modern skin care products, body oils, creams, antibacterial lotions, soaps and shampoos.
Uses of Manuka Oil
Manuka Oil possesses triple therapeutic action and is effective when used as an antibacterial, antifungal and anti inflammatory. Manuka Oil inhibits bacterial growth in the colon, urinary system, respiratory system and other vulnerable parts, and helps checks their attacks. It is antifungal and is effective in eliminating fungal infections.
Manuka Oil is anti inflammatory in nature and can efficiently handle inflammation of any type, be it nasal or respiratory tract resulting from common cold or be it of the digestive system caused due to over eating of spicy food. It can also alleviate the circulatory system from toxins getting into the blood stream caused by fever, infection etc. To put it plainly, it soothes all inflammations.
This oil is anti histaminic in that it control cough, and checks the production of histamine, thereby giving relief from these continuous coughs. Manuka Oil calms down or sedates hyper reaction of the body towards certain foreign elements such as pollens, dust, pets and so on. It provides relief from allergy.
This oil is a cicastrisant in that it helps the scars and after marks on the skin to fade away by promoting new cell growth in the affected parts. It also protects the wounds from infections.
Manuka is cytophylactic as it promotes new cell growth and thereby promotes overall growth and healing of wounds. It can be given to patients who have undergone heavy wounds after any accident or surgery.
This is a potent anti dandruff treatment. As such dandruff can be caused by lack of moisture and oil in the scalp and degeneration of the scalp skin and infections. Manuka helps control, maintain and moisturize the oil balance in the scalp. The degeneration of scalp is stopped and it fights any kind of infection on the scalp. Manuka Oil can be mixed with bathing water or massaged in the head added with some other oil.
In case of insect bites and stings, here is an antidote. Just apply this oil on the affected spot and you will find that the pain and swelling on the spot has reduced significantly.
Manuka Oil properties
Manuka Oil is said to possess anti spasmodic effect and might be worth considering for those who suffer from spasticity. This has been the focus of medicine to advice pregnant women not to use it, though there has been no conclusive study to examine whether it actually does pose a risk.
This oil has an anti anxiety effect and it is known to interact with GABA - A receptors such as Valium. However, no experiments have been done on this aspect. The essential Oil of Manuka blends well with essential Oils of Celery, Sage, Clove, Geranium, Lavender, Lavender Marjoram, Nutmeg, Oak moss, Pine and Rosemary.
Other uses of Manuka Oil
Manuka helps in the treatment of a various health conditions including treatment of rheumatic conditions, muscle aches, joint pains, back ache, arthritis, and sport injuries, apart from dandruff – fleas, lice, nasal congestion, gingivitis, diarrhea, dysentery, urinary conditions, and skin infections. In Aromatherapy, this oil is used to relieve stress and anxiety. Recent research has revealed that Manuka Oil is may also be effective against antibiotic resistant MRSA bacteria and gram bacteria such as Staphylococcus and Streptococcus as well as Pathogenic Fungi.
Manuka Oil treatment tips
Manuka Oil and athlete's foot: This oil can eliminate a variety of bacteria, yeasts and fungi that cause Athlete's foot, toenail fungus and other foot infections. An excellent home remedy is to apply Manuka Oil directly onto the affected feet twice daily and cover with fine cotton fabric or cotton socks. Also soaking the feet in Manuka Oil may help inhibit the progression of any fungi infection. For Manuka soak, add 10 drops of Manuka Oil in 2 quarts of lukewarm water and soak the infected feet for about 15 minutes, four to five times a week.
Manuka Oil in Aromatherapy: Since Manuka Oil has a soothing and relaxing effect on the human psyche, it is beneficial for those who suffer from stress, anxiety and are over sensitive. It has a calming effect on the mind, heat and soul.
This oil rejuvenates the outer layer of skin and creates an uplifting environment and neutralizes pathogens in the air. While feeling depressed, simply diffuse Manuka essential Oil in the room and relax in the bed or lounge chair and breathe in and out deeply.
Take a bath in Manuka Oil to relieve painful muscles and joints or bones. Massage lukewarm Manuka Oil onto stiff joints as this can soothe and alleviate the pain and stiffness. Simply add 10-15 drops of Manuka Oil into the bath water and soak in it for 15 minutes three or four times a week.
An effective home remedy for itching of scalp and head lice is to add 2-3 drops of the oil into your regular shampoo and conditioner and wash the hair. Another tip would be to add two drops of Manuka Oil in one tablespoon of organic coconut Oil and massaged into the hair and scalp thoroughly at least 15-20 minutes before a shower.
Side effects of Manuka Oil
There are no known major side effects of Manuka Oil although it is possible that some may be allergic to Manuka. Therefore, if any skin rash or itchiness is noticed, stop the use of this oil immediately and consul the doctor.
Manuka oil beauty products
Hair and skin care products such as creams and body lotions for acne and itchy skin, shampoos against fungal infections of the scalp, body care products such as deodorants, foot creams and oral hygiene products like dental rinse against bad breath are made from Manuka Oil. Even pet and dog shampoos against insects and cream for mastitis of cows and sheep are made from Manuka.
Manuka is a natural herbal healer. A range of products with natural healing properties are made with Manuka Oil. Skincare products uses Manuka Oil extracted from young leaf tips that can be harvested in the wild from regenerating sustainable Manuka trees located in the East Cape of New Zealand.
The antiseptic cream is soothing and is a healing cream. It contains the combined properties of active Manuka antibacterial antioxidant honey and anti inflammatory Manuka Oil along with skin calming Aloe Vera. This cream can be applied to minor burns, itching irritation and insect bites.
Face wash with Manuka oil contains the combined action of anti-bacterial properties and anti inflammatory Manuka oil that assist in improving problem skin. Oil can cause acne and blemishes. A Manuka oil based foaming facial is very convenient and simple to use. It is a cleansing product and it can remove light make-up. A hand cream from Manuka Oil blended with moisturizing botanical Oils, heals, and protects the hands against dryness and irritation.