The glycaemic index of Manuka honey

Published:December 20, 2012DOI:


      Background & aims

      Rates of obesity and diabetes are increasing in Western populations, and it is suggested that these diseases can be moderated, in part, by consuming foods that produce a low blood sugar response. Anecdotally honeys are thought to be comparable to simple sugars for sweetness and glycaemic response, although little is currently known about the medically beneficial Manuka honey from New Zealand. The aim of this study was to measure the glycaemic index (GI) of five samples of Manuka honey from different geographic origins.


      Five high methylglyoxal (460–667 mg/kg) Manuka honey samples were selected from different geographical locales around the North Island of NZ and tested for GI in 10 healthy volunteers in a single-blinded, randomised study. Participants were fed honey containing 25 g of available carbohydrate in 200 ml water and the blood glucose responses measured (incremental area under the curve; IAUC) and compared to that of 25 g of available carbohydrate from glucose.


      All five honey samples were shown to have moderate GI values (54–59), although variation amongst the group was high.


      The GI of five Manuka honeys tested was in the moderate range, being 54–59.
      This study is registered under Clinical Identifier number NCT01615588.


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