Manuka Honey for Gastric Reflux, Acid Reflux & GERD


8 minutes, 30 seconds

Essential Takeaways

Studies have found manuka honey to be effective against acid reflux, gastric reflux, GERD and gastritis. Its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties help the body to heal and protect itself against any nasties that threaten our stomach and digestive health.

Natural remedies have become more popular in recent years, particularly given the antibiotic resistance crisis. When it comes to GERD, many patients accidentally take their medications too long and may be putting their health at risk.

Unless you’re allergic to bees and pollen, you can safely use manuka honey as a natural answer to your irritating stomach problems (after checking with a doctor). This guide includes plenty of customer success stories to prove it.

Digestive problems can really impact our day-to-day lives and research shows they’re increasing¹.

While some symptoms can be managed with diet and lifestyle changes, others require a more targeted medical approach.

For decades, manuka honey has been researched for its versatile use in medicine and healthcare, with promising results for a wide range of conditions.

Just one example is acid reflux and its chronic cousin, GERD.

In this guide we’ll ask, can honey help acid reflux? Is honey good for GERD?

And does manuka honey help acid reflux, specifically?

We’ll also discuss which grade of manuka honey is best for these purposes, and how to use it.

In this guide to manuka honey for gastritis and digestive disorders:

Gastric Reflux vs Acid Reflux vs Gastritis vs GERD

These terms are often used interchangeably, so first up, let’s tease out the differences between them.

Acid reflux is a general term referring to issues with stomach contents flowing back into the esophagus. It can cause a heartburn sensation and sometimes be quite uncomfortable².

Gastroesophageal reflux (or gastric reflux for short) is simply a more specific term for this condition.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (or GERD) is a chronic condition, where this reflux is happening consistently over time. It can be mildly discomforting or become life-threatening², and is often diagnosed in four stages³:

  1. Mild GERD: acid reflux might occur once or twice a month and can be managed through diet, lifestyle, and over-the-counter medication.

  1. Moderate GERD: symptoms are regular and require prescription medication.

  1. Severe GERD: symptoms are affecting quality of life and daily activity, and a doctor might recommend surgery.

  1. Precancer or cancer: If severe symptoms persist untreated for several years, they could become cancerous.

Gastritis is a little different to acid and gastric reflux. Rather than the esophagus getting damaged or inflamed, it’s the stomach lining.

Symptoms can feel similar, so it’s often mixed up with reflux and GERD. A doctor can help to diagnose the difference⁴.

Manuka Honey for Gastrointestinal Problems

Studies have shown that manuka honey has uniquely potent antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties.

Doctors and vets worldwide are turning to manuka honey to treat some of the most chronic conditions and serious wounds, naturally. This is particularly crucial considering the rise in antibiotic resistance and our over-reliance on traditional medications⁵.

Manuka honey works on acid reflux by creating a protective coating over an affected area, locking in moisture and keeping out bad microbes⁶. It boosts tissue regeneration⁷ and the immune system⁸, giving the body a helping hand in managing a wide range of medical conditions.

Having a natural remedy for gastro problems like acid reflux and GERD is important because traditional treatments are sometimes used incorrectly.

For example, many patients take proton pump indicators (PPIs) for extended periods when they should only be used as fortnightly treatments a couple of times a year⁹.

So let’s delve more deeply into manuka honey for gastrointestinal problems and whether it can replace other medications.

Does manuka honey help gastric reflux and acid reflux?

Yes, manuka honey is a good natural remedy for gastric and acid reflux.

Researchers believe that oxygen-derived free radicals (damaging cells) play a significant role in prompting reflux¹⁰. Thanks to manuka honey’s “high density, high viscosity, and low surface tension”, it is able to coat the mucus membrane of the esophagus and get to work¹⁰.

Its antioxidant properties tackle free radicals, while its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties work to ease and heal any damage caused by reflux.

Here’s what our customers say about manuka honey for gastric issues:

“For the past several years I have had terrible stomach problems. I've been to doctors and had every test, but they couldn't find anything conclusive. On a recent trip to New Zealand I learned about manuka honey. I decided to give it a try. Didn't have anything to lose. Within 3 weeks my stomach problems disappeared. It's been several months and I have had no more problems.”

“I have low stomach acid and H-Pylori and it can be quite painful with regurgitation after eating and even after I am in bed. After taking a qt teaspoon or less when I get up in the morning and after meals, my belly has been much better. Love my Manuka honey!!!”

Manuka honey for GERD

A study specifically investigating the efficacy of manuka honey against Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) found that patients who took the honey saw significant improvements in their symptoms versus the placebo (non-honey) group¹.

In fact, improvements among those who took manuka honey were around 86-100% compared to only 26-40%¹. These results came from asking patients how they felt and then physical examinations to verify their answers.

This study used certified manuka honey from New Zealand like ours, so that researchers could ensure they were using the best product available¹.

Many of our customers have had great success using manuka honey for GERD and general gastrointestinal problems:

“Love the taste! And it really seems to help reduce my GERD symptoms!!!!!”

“It is definitely helping with my gastrointestinal issues. It even works to help heal wounds on the outside of your body also!”

Is manuka honey good for gastritis?

Yes, manuka honey can be a good natural option for easing gastritis.

Gastritis is a collective term for a few different conditions affecting the stomach lining. Anti-inflammatories are usually quite effective in easing gastritis symptoms¹¹.

We know that manuka honey has anti-inflammatory properties and studies have found it to be effective against stomach problems like chronic ulcers and infections¹², as well as gastroenteritis¹³ (this is where the intestines are also affected).

Many of our customers have reported great results from using manuka honey for gastritis:

“It's [manuka honey] the best! It helps with my wounds, gastritis, and digestion! I just feel better when I take it!”

“Absolutely amazing remedy for your digestive system.”

What Grade of Manuka Honey is Best for Reflux?

To protect the integrity of genuine monofloral manuka honey from New Zealand (the type most associated with unique antibacterial properties), a grading system was established.

The Unique Manuka Factor grading system measures the antibacterial potency of each batch of manuka honey and grades it accordingly.

(It also checks that the honey is genuine, pure, and fresh).

The higher the UMF™ grade, the more antibacterial activity the honey has. That’s why we generally recommend higher grades for medical use - at least UMF™ 15+.

If you check out the testimonials above, you’ll see that most of these customers who had great success using manuka honey for digestive issues were using UMF™ 26+.

So the grade you choose is totally up to you. If you’re looking for a general health and wellness boost, then a lower grade might be all you need.

But for the most potent benefits of using manuka honey for reflux, opt for something higher.

If you’re still unsure which jar to choose, try taking our quick and easy quiz.

4 Ways to Use Manuka Honey as an Acid Reflux Treatment

The great thing about using manuka honey for gastric reflux and digestive problems is that to benefit from it, you need to eat it!

How you do that is totally up to you. It’s an impressively versatile ingredient, with so many recipe options to choose from.

Or you can enjoy it straight from the spoon!

Here are a few more creative ways to take manuka honey for gastric problems.

  1. Brew a manuka honey tea

Before or after your meal, try adding manuka honey to green tea.

You’ll want to avoid caffeinated tea as this can aggravate acid reflux¹⁴. Make sure to give your drink a chance to cool a little before adding your honey to keep all those delicious health benefits intact.

Ginger can also ease symptoms, so why not shave off a few fresh slithers of ginger and add this to your beverage as well (just be sure to avoid lemon as high-acidity citrus fruits can make your reflux worse!)

  1. Blend a manuka honey smoothie

The following foods are great for acid reflux (or at least they won’t aggravate it)¹⁵, and they scream smoothie: bananas, apples, melon, celery, leafy greens, avocado, ginger, and carrot.

Why not create a delicious green smoothie packing in all the nutrients and manuka honey to top it off?

  1. Add manuka honey to your oatmeal

Oatmeal is a great breakfast food because it regulates your blood sugar, fills you up ‘til lunch, and it won’t irritate your stomach.

Wait for your oats to cool a little, then dollop some delicious manuka honey on top. Walnuts and flaxseed can also help with symptoms so why not add a few of them in for texture and crunch?¹⁵

  1. Make a marinade or dressing for your main meal

Chicken, turkey, fish, and seafood are lower in fat and less likely to flair up your acid reflux than fattier meats¹⁵.

Capitalise on flavour as well as nutrition with our mouth-watering recipes:

To make sure you get all those health benefits, make sure to read our guide on top tips when cooking with manuka honey.

We also have over 170 ideas of other ways you can use manuka honey from food to skincare and wellness, and everything in between!

It’s 1 ingredient, 2000 natural compounds. And a whole heap of possibilities.

How many foods can you say that about?

Check out the mega list here.

Get Rid of the Reflux With Our Premium Manuka Honey

If you’re looking for the best manuka honey for gastritis, reflux, and GERD, you’ve come to the right place.

Our UMF™ graded manuka honey is sourced from rural and remote parts of New Zealand by some of the most responsible and dedicated beekeepers in the business.

It is glyphosate-free, gluten-free, non-GMO, Halal, and Kosher—even our packaging is sustainable. There are absolutely no nasties.

“I’ve been having daily Manuka honey for three months now, it’s the only thing that keeps my turbulent gut stable, and New Zealand Honey Co is by far the most efficient and cost effective way to source it.”

Shop the range.

Read more reviews.


¹ Application of manuka honey in treatment patients with GERD, National Library of Medicine.

² Heartburn, acid reflux, or GERD, Pfizer.

³ Gastroesophageal reflux disease, Kansas Health System.

⁴ 4 things everyone should know about gastritis, GI MD.

⁵ How antibiotic resistance happens,

Honey in dermatology and skincare, National Library of Medicine.

Manuka honey for tissue regeneration, MDPI.

Honey and health: a review, National Library of Medicine.

Reflux and natural remedies, OPA.

¹⁰ Honey: a nutrient with medicinal property in reflux esophagitis, Indian Journal of Medical Research.

¹¹ Home remedies for gastritis, Medical News Today.

¹² Manuka honey exerts antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities…, National Library of Medicine.

¹³ The effect of manuka honey on enterobacteria, Waikato University.

¹⁴ The best and worst foods for acid reflux, UH Hospitals.

 ¹⁵ GERD diet, Healthline.

Your wellness journey starts with a spoonful a day.


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