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Propolis reduces abdominal pain in IBS patients

In people with irritable bowel syndrome [IBS], supplementation with the bee product propolis drastically reduces abdominal pain. Megadoses are not necessary. A dose of 2 tablets per day is sufficient.

Propolis reduces abdominal pain in IBS patients

IBS is accompanied by inflammatory reactions and a deterioration of the intestinal flora. Because propolis inhibits inflammation and improves intestinal health in animal studies, researchers from Tabriz University of Medical Sciences Iran wondered whether propolis supplementation could be useful for people with IBS.

The researchers did an experiment with 56 IBS patients. IBS comes in all shapes and sizes; the subjects had IBS with constipation and IBS with mixed stool pattern.

The researchers divided the subjects into 2 groups. One group took a placebo daily for 6 weeks, while another group took 900 milligrams of propolis daily. The researchers used a supplement that provided 450 milligrams of propolis per tablet. Each tablet contained 90 milligrams of polyphenols. Of this, 67 milligrams consisted of flavonoids.

The subjects took a tablet with lunch and dinner.

Propolis supplementation reduced abdominal pain by 44 percent and the number of times the subjects reported abdominal pain by 43 percent. Not surprisingly, the negative impact of the condition on quality of life was reduced by propolis supplementation.

Click on the table and figure below for a larger version.

Propolis reduces abdominal pain in IBS patients

Propolis reduces abdominal pain in IBS patients

In the placebo group, 52 percent of the subjects reported an improvement. In the propolis group this was 81 percent.

"Propolis can be used as adjunctive therapy in irritable bowel syndrome with constipation and irritable bowel syndrome with mixed stool pattern to reduce abdominal pain", the researchers write.

"It is recommended that future studies specifically investigate the effects of propolis supplementation on diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome and gut microbiome of irritable bowel syndrome patients."

Food Sci Nutr. 2022 Apr 20;10(6):1899-1907.

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