Why Maori healers reach for manuka

Maori healers have known about the special properties of manuka for centuries. It was a tree for many purposes; a first aid kit instantly at hand.

Manuka is a small native tree found throughout New Zealand as two varieties - red and white. When compared with red manuka, white manuka grows taller and has smaller leaves and flowers with a stronger scent.

Botanical Name: Leptospermum scoparium
Common Name: New Zealand tea tree
Maori names: Manuka, Kahikaatoa, Kaatoa, Pata, Rauwiri, Rauiri

Generally white manuka was preferred by Maori healers, who used infusions to reduce fevers and treat stomach problems. Manuka gum was used as a salve for burns and to ease coughing. Decoctions from the bark were used to treat diarrhoea and fever. The bark was also used to create infusions that had a sedative effect.


Maori medicine, known as rongoā, is still practiced in New Zealand. Practitioners gather plants from native forests and follow traditional recipes to create creams, balms, teas and elixirs. There are regular rongoā events and workshops held around the country for those who want to learn how to make their own potions.

A more convenient way to experience rongoā is to buy a tube of ManukaRx® ointment, which harnesses the medicinal qualities of New Zealand manuka oil.

ManukaRx®ointment can be part of your daily or nightly routine. You can use it as lip balm or to keep heels and elbows in good condition. It can even be used as a cuticle cream.

The ointment is also a multi-tasker for skin problems, including:

  • Skin abrasions and minor cuts that are at risk of infection
  • Tinea (fungal infection) between the toes
  • Insect bites and stings
  • Burn treatment, once the burn has been suitably cooled with cold water
  • Scar prevention, when minor wounds are healing

 

 

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