Is Manuka Honey suitable for people with diabetes?

Honey is a natural sweetener and a healthy substitute for refined sugar. But is it safe for people with diabetes?

Individuals who have diabetes must control their sugar and carbohydrate intake to avoid any spikes in their blood sugar levels. Although honey is natural, it is still 80% of carbohydrates and contains more calories per teaspoon than sugar.

However, does that mean people with diabetes should avoid honey altogether? Let’s look at what honey does to blood sugar levels.

How does honey affect diabetes?

There are few studies that show that honey may be useful for Type 2 diabetes and may act as an antidiabetic agent. Other studies have indicated that consuming honey can increase insulin levels, thus controlling blood sugar levels.

Researchers have also found that honey has a lower glycaemic effect compared to sugar, on people with type 1 diabetes and also on those without diabetes. In other words, it is less likely to raise blood sugar levels. 

Even though studies suggest that honey may be beneficial for people with diabetes, there is no conclusive research that supports honey for diabetes prevention and control.

What about Manuka honey?

All honey contains antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. Researchers have noted that honey may reduce inflammation that occurs in diabetes and other metabolic conditions, and is useful in healing wounds.

Manuka honey has stronger antibacterial properties that set it apart from other types of honey, which is probably why it is more effective in wound healing. Manuka honey has been shown to enhance wound healing and improve the regeneration of tissue.

In fact, in 2007, the US FDA approved Manuka honey as an option for wound treatment.

Manuka honey benefits for diabetes

One complication that affects people with diabetes is foot ulcers, which takes a long time to heal. Of those affected, about 6% of the people are hospitalised because of infections and other related problems.

Here is where Manuka honey is useful. The application of Manuka honey to diabetic ulcers has proved effective in healing when used with conventional treatment. Studies also show that Manuka honey reduces healing time for diabetic foot ulcers.

Besides ulcers, diabetes can also cause other skin conditions like bacterial infections, diabetic dermopathy, fungal infections, athlete’s foot, blisters, dry skin, bunions, and corns.

When applied topically, Manuka honey can be beneficial for diabetic related skin conditions as it can inhibit bacterial growth and ease inflammation.


Are there any risks of eating Manuka honey if you have diabetes?

Even though Manuka honey has powerful anti-bacterial, antiviral, anti- inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, it can still increase your blood sugar levels.

Manuka honey falls within the medium Glycaemic Index (GI) range and individuals with diabetes should not be consume it regularly.

However, if you take your Manuka honey 250g as a substitute for sugar, then make sure you have only a little. It is recommended to test your blood sugar levels afterwards to monitor any spikes.

More suitable types of honey for people with diabetes are those with a lower GI level, such as  Native Bee Honey, Iron Bark honey and Yellow Box Honey and Leatherwood. But again, they need to be consumed in moderation.

It is highly recommended that you speak with your healthcare provider before adding Manuka honey or any other honey to your diet.


Diabetes Related Skin Conditions

Nature's Gold Therapeutic Skin Cream offers quick relief for many skin conditions resulting from diabetes. The Manuka Honey in our Therapeutic Skin Cream is highly effective in controlling bacteria, including antibiotic resistant forms of Staphylococcus Aureus and the MRSA "super bug". It also moisturises and softens dry skin, reduces itching and assists wounds to heal with minimal scaring.


For people with diabetes, having too much glucose in their blood for a long time can cause serious complications, including foot and skin problems. Fortunately, most skin conditions can be prevented or successfully treated if caught early.

However, if not cared for properly, a minor skin condition in a person with diabetes can turn into a serious problem with potentially severe consequences.

Ken's Story

“For 41 years I have been a Type 1 diabetic. As a result, healing, particularly in the lower leg and foot region, has been a major problem. The smallest scratch can be a major drama.

After trialing many creams with limited success, I was introduced to Nature’s Gold Therapeutic Skin Cream. Since using your product, most cuts and scratches heal in just a few days, and the condition of my browning and aging skin has been totally revived. Scarring has also been reduced, leaving my skin looking much younger and healthier.

I have also suffered with unbearable itching from Psoriasis, but using the cream straight after my shower has completely alleviated this complaint, too. Your product has been a God send!”

Ken, New South Wales

What causes diabetes?

Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes, affecting 85-90% of all sufferers followed by Type 1, which affects only 10-15%. The exact cause of Type 1 is unknown, however, it has a strong family link and cannot be prevented.

Type 2 has no single cause, but there are well-established risk factors that can contribute to Type 2 diabetes. These include having a family history of diabetes, being over 55 years of age, or if you are overweight or having high blood pressure.

Skin complications

Diabetes can affect every part of the body, including the skin. It is estimated that one-third of people with diabetes will have a skin disorder at some time in their lives.

In fact, such problems are sometimes the first sign that a person has diabetes. Some of the common skin problems associated with diabetes include bacterial infections, diabetic dermopathy, fungal infections, athlete’s foot, blisters, dry skin, foot ulcers, bunions and corns.

How does diabetes affect the skin?

With high levels of glucose in the blood, your body loses fluid, causing the skin to become dry. This occurs because the body is turning the water into urine to remove excess glucose from the blood. Your skin can also get dry if the nerves, especially those in your legs and feet, do not get the message to sweat. Sweating helps keep your skin soft and moist.

Dry skin can become red and sore, and ultimately can crack and peel. Germs can enter through the cracks in your skin and cause an infection. In addition, dry skin is usually itchy and scratching can lead to breaks in the skin, thus causing infection.

Blood glucose provides an excellent breeding ground for bacteria and fungi and can reduce the body’s ability to heal itself.

Tips for relief or prevention of skin problems 

Taking proper care of your skin can help prevent many of these common problems and/or treat them before they cause serious complications. Here are some tips for taking good care of your skin.

Keep your skin dry and clean. Use talcum powder to keep folds of skin dry.

Avoid very hot baths and showers. Use natural soaps or shower gels to prevent drying the skin. Use Nature’s Gold Therapeutic Skin Cream after bathing. Keep the skin between toes dry.

    Prevent dry skin. Liberally massage the Therapeutic Skin Cream into the skin, especially in the winter months.

    Treat minor cuts and scrapes immediately. The anti-bacterial properties of Nature’s Gold Therapeutic Skin Cream will prevent infection.

    Always use unscented soaps and mild shampoos and conditioners.

    In winter months, use a humidifier when the heater is on to put moisture back into the air.

    Drink lots of fluids, such as water, to keep your skin moist and healthy. Wear all cotton underwear. It allows air to circulate.

    Keep the blood flowing to your feet. Put your feet up when sitting, wiggle your toes and move your ankles several times a day and don’t cross your legs for long periods of time.

    Stop smoking. Smoking can make blood flow problems worse.

       Contact your health care professional if you have a problem that gets worse or won’t heal. If you have diabetes related skin problems, our natural products are the perfect solution for your skin care.

        To purchase Nature's Gold Therapeutic Skin Cream  anywhere in Australia including Manuka honey in Tasmania, please use either our secure online shopping facility or, if you prefer, you can us phone direct on 1300 309 128.