It’s affordable, it’s natural and it’s been in use for thousands of years, but with the sudden rise in usage, what do Australian women need to consider before popping a jar of methylglyoxal? It’s been taunted as the go-to natural cure for everything from acne to IBS, so does it work and are there risks?

Modern Australian Methylglyoxal is potent

Once used in Australia and New Zealand by First Nations’ people, methylglyoxal (known as MGO), the active ingredient in Manuka Honey, boasts antibacterial properties that can treat wounds, acne, infections and skin conditions.

What the scientists say

Methylglyoxal is widely studied and among peer reviewed studies, found to combat malignant cells, microbial infections, and is widely used to ease symptoms of some gut related illness.

As modern medicine discovers more about the properties of this very specific kind of honey, beekeepers and honey retailers are producing Manuka with higher potency than ever before. But is there a downside to high concentrations of Manuka MGO?

Manuka MGO 900+

In Australia, the level of methylglyoxal is measured on a scale of inactive to 900+ and indicates the quantity of MGO per kilogram of honey. Certified MGO 900+ Manuka Honey, indicates highest potency available and is used by natural therapists and the pharmaceutical industry to produce short term acute medications and topical salves.

Here is where consumers can inadvertently overuse Manuka Honey. As the medicinal properties of Manuka are significant, using MGO 900+ Manuka daily may result in “overdose”. In such high potency doses, users increase the risk of adverse effects, including allergic reactions, diabetes and A.G.E. related metabolic issues.

Manuka MGO 500+ is the highest recommended daily dose

Like all medicines, it’s best to consult a health practitioner before commencing a course of treatment. For chronic illness, where medicinal honey will be used daily, the highest recommended dosage of Methylglyoxal is 500mg per kilogram.

Warnings for Natural Practitioners and Private Label Skin Care Manufacturers

MGO 900 Manuka Honey is the active ingredient in a growing number of acne and skin care treatments, as well as treatments for chronic microbial illnesses. Natural Practitioners and private label skin care manufacturers using MGO 900 Manuka Honey in bulk are urged to check the dosage carefully to avoid over exposure to Methylglyoxal, because there’s always the risk of “too much of a good thing”.