Choosing Manuka Honey: What Grade of Manuka Honey is Best?

What is Manuka Honey?

Raw manuka honey, compared to refined varieties is unfiltered, unprocessed and completely natural. Manuka honey is a rare specialist variety of honey prized for its delicate floral taste and anti-bacterial properties.Manuka honey is produced by bees that feed on the nectar of Manuka flowers. These flowers come into bloom only for a few days during the summertime and they’re found only in New Zealand. That means it contains a wealth of healthful nutrients and active natural ingredients that lend many benefits to the body. From a well-being point of view, raw manuka honey is definitely better than regular or refined honey.

Cold Pressed, Heat Pressed, Filtered: Why that is important

Processing or heating honey strips it of its bioactives and antioxidants. That drastically reduces the anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial potential of the honey. Regular (processed) honey is also low on pollen content. Manuka honey, when its raw and comes straight from the hive, also has a higher ratio of phenols, plant-based compounds that keep the body (especially our hearts) healthy.

Is a Spoonful of Manuka Honey Good for You?

A spoonful of manuka honey could do wonders. Manuka honey has been researched for healthful compounds, nutrients and phenols all of which are needed by the body to stay healthy and fight infections.Researchers have explored the miraculous properties manuka honey in relation to immunity and metabolism. It improved both and while also having favourable effects on digestion. Manuka honey is also good for your skin because of its anti-microbial properties. Besides, manuka honey is a wholesome source of quick energy. Just drizzle it on a toast, add it in yogurt or mix some into your smoothie if you’re feeling lazy.

The Different Potencies of Raw Manuka Honey and their Grading system (MGO - UMF)

What is MGO?

MGO is short for methylglyoxal the special bioactive responsible for the potent and unique anti-microbial properties of manuka honey. MGO is a honey grading system that measures the level of methylglyoxal in honey. As a rule, the higher the MGO rating of your honey, the more its methylglyoxal content and the better its quality.

What MGO Honey is Best?

Manuka honey is great in all its forms but the best type of honey for you is the one that best suits your purpose.

Milder varieties of Manuka honey (with lower MGO ratings) work best as table grade honey that’s perfect for everyday consumption while higher methylglyoxal concentrations (high MGO ratings) are ideal for health, medicinal and cosmetic purposes.

See this chart to select the right concentration for yourself:

  • Table grade (MGO 83 - MGO 263) - for daily consumption, include in your health chart,

beverages, salads or take it raw

  • Moderate grade (MGO 263 - MGO 514) - aka ‘therapeutic grade’ honey, suitable for

short-term consumption and general well-being

  • Higher grade manuka honey (MGO 514 - MGO 1200) - with higher MGO readings can

be used for skin care (wound healing, skin therapy, etc.)


 Table Grade Manuka Honey

Table grade manuka honey is ideal for everyday use and  is mild. Unlike more concentrated varieties of raw manuka, it does not have a very high antimicrobial (germ-busting) potential. Its milder nature makes it a safer and more suitable option for routine use.

Rating: MGO 83 or UMF 5 


 You can use table-grade raw manuka honey as a healthy and nutritious sweetener. Add a teaspoon to sweeten up your tea or mix it into a power-packed workout smoothie.

Spread on warm toast or add to your porridge for breakfast. You can also mix some into fruit yogurt to fix yourself a filling snack or you can drizzle some over your salads and healthy desserts.

Table grade varieties with higher methylglyoxal (MGO) levels can also be included in your skincare routine. Use as a moisturiser, a replenishing lip balm, or a natural anti-aging treatment

Recommended Products:
Manuka Honey 83 + MGO 250 grams (8 oz)

Moderate Grade Manuka Honey

Moderate grade manuka honey is also known as ‘therapeutic’ grade manuka honey.

Moderate grade manuka has notable antimicrobial activity. That makes it the perfect honey for short-term non-medicinal usage. You can add it to your food and drinks to improve your health and well-being.

Moderate grade honey is also great for topical application. It wards off germs that harm your skin so including it in your beauty care routine is a wonderful idea.

Rating: MGO 263 - MGO 514 or UMF 10 - UMF 15


Medium grade raw manuka honey is the right honey for skincare. It has a relatively high concentration of bioactives that protect the skin and keep it healthy.

Moderate potency manuka is a great choice for your self-care treatments. Add a spoonful to your homemade face masks and scrubs to make them more effective. Rub a bit onto your skin to counter flakiness. You can also use it to soothe an itch or remedy puffiness. 

You can take a spoonful of moderate-grade manuka honey for an instant energy boost. You can also make yourself some manuka honey tea to soothe your throat during a cold. Gargle with it to keep your gums and teeth healthy.

Recommended Products:
Manuka Honey 263+ MGO 250 grams (8 0z)


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