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Frequently Asked Questions


Q: Is Methylgyloxal safe to eat?

A: There are two categories of methylglyoxal. The first is where it is produced by the human body during energy metabolism inside every cell in the body. The second where a person consumes methylglyoxal, such as in honey, we call this dietary methylglyoxal. Dietary methylglyoxal does not harm the body and in fact, is never absorbed by the body. It does not enter the bloodstream and passes through the body. In summary dietary methylglyoxal is not a dietary risk.

Q: How is methylglyoxal produced inside the body?

A: Methylglyoxal is produced by every cell during energy metabolism (when glucose from food is converted to energy) and each cell rids itself of methylglyoxal through a dextoxification system.

Q: Can you add synthetic methylglyoxal to honey?

A: Synthetic methylglyoxal is produced from crude oil. It cannot legally be added to honey (or any other food) and sold as honey. There are ways to determine if it has been added.

Q: Are there other compounds in manuka honey that provide stable anti-bacterial activity?

A:  Without doubt methylglyoxal is the unique anti-bacterial compound in manuka honey. 90-95% of the stable anti-bacterial activity is due to methylglyoxal. If there is no methylglyoxal there is no activity. In fact methylglyoxal is more effective as part of the honey matrix than when it stands alone.

Q: How much manuka honey should a person eat?

A: A person can eat as much honey as they want. If they have a stomach upset and find the honey helps then they can take the honey as often as they wish.

The situation is different for diabetics because they must be careful with their glucose uptake. But they should not be worried about the methylglyoxal uptake.

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