H. pylori Natural Treatment: Active Manuka Honey and Mastic Gum

active manuka honey natural remedy for h. pyloriTwo alternative H. pylori natural treatments for the bacterial infection include taking active manuka honey and/or mastic gum.

I’ve taken both and shared below some product background information as well as what has worked for me.

I have not taken them on blind faith or based on manufacturer claims, but have researched them as thoroughly as I can via other doctor’s opinions and scientific journal articles.

I am not one to blindly start taking alternative medicines just because so & so says so, “It works!” I thoroughly research products before I even consider taking them.

I have a science background and so I look for statistically significant proof, typically through peer-reviewed journal articles, behind any product claims or statements of “cures” or the like.

In my previous post about how H. pylori causes ulcers, I discussed a little about what the bacteria is and how the infection it causes is conventionally treated with prescription drugs if you want some additional background information.

Active Manuka Honey

manuka honey flowers

Manuka tree (Leptospermum scoparium) flowers of New Zealand.

Manuka honey was the first item I came across and started taking to eradicate H. pylori. Manuka honey is made from the manuka bush (Leptospermum scoparium) flowers of New Zealand.

But you can’t just take any ol’ manuka honey.

umf active manuka honey for h. pylori

Buy Active Manuka Honey with an UMF rating of at least 10+ or contains at least 100mg/kg of MGO (methylglyoxal).

It has to be Active Manuka Honey with a Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) rating of at least 10.

The UMF rating means that the honey contains the non-peroxide antibacterial activity from methylglyoxal (MGO) needed to kill H. pylori.

If you do not see a UMF rating, look for a MGO rating, which apparently is now more accurate is measuring the methylglyoxal activity.

The MGO rating is on a different scale than UMF. So a MGO rating of 100 is equivalent to a UMF rating of 10+.

And note that some companies may state a rating, like 16+, but if you cannot find any statement saying that it is tested, graded and certified by a lab to have that rating, don’t buy it. Just cause they stick it on the label, doesn’t mean it’s true.

When I took this everyday consistently for several weeks, I did see improvement.

Consistently meant taking a teaspoonful 20 minutes before every meal. But then I would get lazy when I started feeling better. And I could go for a month or two without any symptoms – for the first time in a long time which I never could when I was on the prescription acid-reducer (Aciphex), but then I would need to go back on it.

I’m not a real big honey fan, especially not taking a big spoonful of it and sometimes it was inconvenient to always have the honey with me before eating a meal, especially when traveling. The honey is a little expensive as well since it is made only in New Zealand from Manuka bush flowers which only flower 2-6 weeks annually. So I started to look for other alternatives. Here is a study from the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine with results of manuka honey killing H. pylori bacteria. There have been numerous others since then.

Mastic Gum

mastic gum bush Pistacia lentiscus

Mastic shrub, Pistacia lentiscus from which the mastic gum resin is extracted.

Mastic Gum is a resinous exudate obtained from the stem and the main leaves of the mastic shrub (Pistacia lentiscus) found in Greece. Research shows that it inhibits growth of H. pylori and acts as antibiotic.  This became my best choice for treatment, based on supporting scientific research and for ease of use.

I took a total of 1,000 mg (1g) Mastic Gum daily, divided into 2 doses: one 500 mg capsule in the morning before breakfast and another 500 mg capsule in the evening before bed for 2 months.

You can buy mastic gum as a chewing gum, but it is also available in capsules which I prefer since there are not a lot of additives and I know I am just getting pure mastic gum.

mastic gum to treat helicobacter pylori

I prefer to take mastic gum in a 500 mg capsule.

Studies have shown negative stool tests from patients on a treatment for as little as two weeks, but recommended dosage is usually a minimum of 30 days.

For prevention, I take mastic gum every six months for 30 days. For the prevention 30-day dosage period, I will take one 500 mg capsule in the morning before breakfast.

I have used Jarrow Formulas Matic Gum and  NutriCology Mastic Gum which both contain 500 mg of Pistacia lentiscus resin per capsule.

Now you may want to read our next article which includes a list and description of other natural treatments and products I take for maintaining healthy digestion and prevention of future H. pylori infections: More H. Pylori Natural Remedies

Note: This article is not written to advise people to treat themselves. It is for informative interest only. This post is not for people who do not  know for sure if they have a Helicobacter pylori infection. If you suspect you may be infected with H. pylori, you need to confirm it with either a urea breath, blood antibody or stool antigen test through your doctor for a positive diagnosis. Always consult a doctor before starting any treatment regime.

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  1. hi, thanks for sharing this information.
    i have mastic in lumps. should i take 1 gm/day in 2 doses, just as with the pills. also, how should i take it? just swallow the lump? pound it and mix the powder with water? or some other way?
    thanks for your time.

    • Joy – I don’t know exactly what product you have, so first I would say follow the directions on the package, if any. If not, then I would divide it into 2 daily does of 500 mg each as the research suggests. Some will grind the mastic pieces up and fill empty gelatin capsules. I personally would have a hard time swallowing a lump just as is, so I don’t know about that. And whether it would dissolve in water so you could drink it as a solution, I’m not sure. It is very resinous. Although I know a traditional Greek drink, soumatha, is made with mastic, almond milk and water so maybe dissolving ground mastic gum in water would not a problem.

      • Gabriela says:

        Can I take Manuka Honey and Mastic Gum (1000 mg in the morning, 1000 mg at night)?


        • Gabriela – I took a total of 1,000 mg of mastic gum daily divided into two does, 500 mg before breakfast and 500 mg before bed on an empty stomach. Since it is suggested to take the mastic gum and manuka honey on an empty stomach, I took them at different times.

          • Gabriela says:

            But it is safe to take together, correct?

          • Stephanie says:

            Can manuka honey and mastic gum affect your period cycle? I have been taking 2000 mg a day mastic gum and 400 mgo manuka honey at night for a week now. And I’m late on my period?

            Please advise

          • Stephanie – There is no specific evidence that either manuka honey or mastic gum can affect your menstrual cycle. There are natural supplements that can affect your hormones and, therefore, your cycle, like black cohosh, chasteberry, soy flavenoids, evening primrose, etc.. but I’m not aware of such effects from manuka honey or mastic gum – not to say it’s 100% impossible that they cannot. Many factors can cause irregular periods such as stress, travel, excessive weight gain/weight loss, PCOS, thyroid disorders, over-exercising, etc.. More reasons listed here.

        • I used 1000mg (mastic gum) in the morning, and 1000mg in the evening. The best result!

  2. Hi 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your findings. I’m interested in trying the manuka honey to treat h. pylori. I’ll be getting the UMF 18+, how long should i take it for? And what dose do you suggest?
    Thanks a lot!

    • Hamada – One study had patients take four teaspoons of honey four times a day with food, one hour before a meal (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and just before going to bed. How long to take it for? Some suggest taking it for 2-4 months for complete eradication. You may feel better before then, but as with conventional prescription antibiotics, if you don’t consistently take the honey for the entire time, some bacteria may remain and your symptoms can return.

  3. Hi,

    Do I take honey and gum at the same time since both need to be taken on empty stomach before meals? Thanks 🙂

    • Anna – If you wanted to take both manuka honey and mastic gum, I assume it would be fine to take them at the same time. The suggested mastic gum dosage is twice a day, once before breakfast and once before bedtime. So the before breakfast dosage would overlap with the honey dosage. But I have never taken both at the same time and have not found any information regarding the pros or cons of doing so. I wouldn’t expect it to be a problem combining them, but I cannot say for sure.

  4. You should have taken higher MGO/UMF grade, as 100+/10+ is the lowest active grade and it’s recommended mostly for minor colds.
    H. pylori is sometimes extremely resistant to antibiotics and there are cases in which no combination of antibiotics works.
    For those people, it is recommended the MGO 550+ or UMF 25+ which is the highest grade and the most potent Manuka honey (also the most expensive, unfortunately).
    That’s what I’ve read online, according to multiple studies and first hand accounts from people who tried. I hope it helps someone to heal.

    • Lexus – Yes, I agree if you have a particularly stubborn case of an H. pylori infection, especially one that didn’t respond to a triple or quad therapy (antibiotics combined with other drugs), then you should try a stronger MGO/UMF Manuka Honey. I did in fact use UMF 25+ Manuka Honey for my own treatment. The MGO 100+ and UMF 10+ are the minimum ratings that have been shown to eradicate H. pylori. If one is not concerned with price, then they should purchase a stronger honey from the start.

  5. Hi, after taking mastic gum did you test negative for H.pylori or did you assume you don’t have the bacteria because your symptoms disappeared. I am nursing my 3 month old and have recently found that I have H. Pylori. I would prefer to not take antibiotics. Would it be safe to do the 30 day mastic gum therapy while nursing? Are there any side affects from eating mastic gum. Thank you.

    • Saroj – I did not get a test for H. pylori after my symptoms went away. Unfortunately, I cannot find any study that says whether it is safe or not to take mastic gum while nursing. Web MD states this about using mastic gum while breastfeeding:

      Special Precautions & Warnings:
      Pregnancy and breastfeeding: Not enough is known about the use of mastic during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

      Of course you can ask your doctor if it would be safe, but my guess he/she would say no because very few herbs and their effects have been studied on breastfeeding infants. If you have a trained herbalist in your area, they may be able to give you more information about its safety. Just FYI, here is a list of herbs to avoid while nursing.

  6. I’m experiencing symptoms of H. Pylori, but a recent blood test came back negative for the infection. I’m so stumped about the cause of my horrific halitosis and acid reflux. I literally have the worst case of bad breath which can full up an entire room, smells like ammonia. It’s has me so depressed I asked my doctor to put me out of work until next week. I have no clue what to do, so completely lost. Please help me, tell me what do you recommend? Also what brand of the Manuka Honey did you use and how much does it cost?

    • Leigh – What did your doctor recommend as a method to reduce your acid reflux since your H. pylori test was negative?

      • Hello,
        Just to echo Leigh here, I’m having similar issues:
        -Abdominal pain
        -Heart burn or pain
        -Lot of Gas production in intestines
        -Horrid bad breath
        -Weight Loss
        Which all indicates person should be having HP. In fact I have had HP a year and half ago, I also went through lots of treatments but above mentioned symptoms never gone. Recently I did stool antigen test for HP which came negative so wondering how these symptoms are sticking with me still. Can u please research further and tell me how I can get rid of it. As I am feeling hopeless and helpless now.
        Thanks, KP

        • KushP – What kind of treatments did you go through? It is possible to have a false-negative result from a stool antigen test for H. pylori if you were taking any medications (antibiotics, proton-pump inhibtors such as Prilosec, Prevacid, etc., and bismuth such as Pepto-Bismul) within the 2 weeks prior to stool collection.

        • Do blood vs. stool test. My blood test #1 was positive. Doctor ordered a stool test. It came back negative. Doc said “must have been a false-positive so don’t worry.” Now 7 mos later, blood test #2 shows ‘elevated h.pylori (4.1’)! Lesson: Consider the location of the stomach relative to the lower colon where elimination happens and all things in between. So a) why trust a stool test here & b) challenge doctors opinions.

  7. I have H.Pylori Infection and I am currently taking antibiotics . Whether I can take honey and antibiotics at same time?

  8. I have h.pylori and i have took the quad treatment twice and still have h.pylori…
    I would love to try the honey which one would you recommend? Also what dosage and for how long?
    Thanks in advance!

    • Meka – Buy Active Manuka Honey with an UMF rating of at least 10+ or contains at least 100mg/kg of MGO (methylglyoxal). This Manuka Honey fits that criteria. Take a teaspoon 20 minutes before every meal on a small piece of bread, cracker or something similar for 2-4 months. You may feel better much sooner than that but to completely eradicate the bacteria, you will need to take it for several months.

  9. THANK YOU..!!!!!…

  10. I’m allergic to wheat…Is there another way I can take it?

    • Your welcome, Meka. And you can take it with any wheat-free/gluten-free food you like.

      • You recommended 10+ Honey I got it today…..
        Just a quick question is it going to be strong enough??.. Being that I took the quad treatment twice and this nasty bacteria is still here…!!…

        • Meka – The 10+ should be fine. Studies have shown that it is strong enough to kill the bacteria, but there are no guarantees since everyone is different. Just like the quad treatment works for some people, but in your case it did not. The same goes for the honey. Just remember to take it consistently for at least 2 months, some recommend four months.

  11. Hello, can I take synthroid along with manuka honey 16+ and mastic gum at the same time in the morning? Also what is the dosage for the honey? This is to eradicate H. Pylori.
    Thank you in advance.

    • Sally – There is no data I know of regarding the interaction of taking Synthroid with manuka honey and/or mastic gum. I would recommend you ask your doctor first. If you are able to take the honey, one common dosage recommendation is to take one teaspoonful 20 minutes before every meal on a small piece (1-2 inches) of food like bread, cracker, banana, apple or any food you prefer for 2-4 months. You may feel better much sooner than that but to completely eradicate the bacteria, you will need to take it for several months.

  12. Hello, I am having problems of stomach pain (upper abdomen) and burping especially after meals, that leads to so much discomfort and sometime a lump-like feeling in my throat. I am having this problem since last year, October. Recently in August I had an endoscopy and was found positive for h.pylori and antral gastritis. I have completed my first triple therapy dose but no signs of relief is there. I lost my job because of this continuous problem. Currently I am on sompraz and normaxin medicine but I do not have any relief yet. Should I go for mastic and manuka honey? I ask my doctor for this but he didn’t allow me to take it. What should I do and should I also go for another test for h. pylori…. pls help.

    • Kam – What does your doctor suggest since the first triple therapy didn’t work? He does not want you to take mastic gum or manuka honey (not surprising), but does he offer you any alternatives? Or is he/she telling you to take the Sompraz and Normaxin for awhile and see if it helps? How long have you been taking those medications? It is possible to get false negatives for the h. pylori test, so yes, you could take another test, but you need to be off any medications before taking another.

      • I am taking these acids suppressing pills since last year and currently taking sompraz and normaxin since last two or three months after my triple therapy doses are finished but I want a permanent relief from this problem, one doctor also said that ur problem has nothing to do with hpylori. I dont know should I go with these mastic gum or not, as I have read so many positive reviews for it, plz help
        And I dont understand y d doctr is not going for quad therapy, rather than these acid suppressing pills

        • Kam – The doctor that says your problem has nothing to do with H. pylori – what does he think is the source of your stomach pain? If your stomach problem is not caused by the bacteria (which perhaps is why your test is negative), then Manuka honey and/or mastic gum may not be the best choice for you. In general, they are both good for maintaining a healthy gastrointestinal system and for specifically eradicating the H. pylori bacterium, but if you have other stomach problems, they may need to be treated by other methods.

  13. Cristian Figueroa says:

    Hey there, just a question regarding the mastic gum and Manuka honey regimen. I am a young man (19 years old) and for the past 3-4 years I’ve had several GI issues including bloating, acid reflux, burping/belching, loose stools etc. I went to the doctor and tested negative for H.pylori, he said it was just IBS.. Didn’t really help me much, so I am kind of at a loss here and sick of feeling this way, just wondering if it’s okay to take these two natural remedies for a couple of months as recommended as a way to help with these symptoms even if I don’t have h.pylori and if it would be safe to take if you do not have h.pylori, Thanks for your time.

    • Cristian – Like other herbal supplements, taking Manuka honey and/or mastic gum may cause adverse interactions with prescription and OTC medications or may inhibit or increase the effects of some drugs. So if you are taking any medications, consult with your physician first before taking either. With that said, both Manuka honey and mastic gum are used for general digestive health (not just for H. pylori treatment) so I would assume it could help with your IBS, but there are no absolutes. There has been a study (pdf), however, that demonstrated regular use of Manuka honey can help alleviate IBS and ulcerative colitis symptoms.

  14. Hello , regarding your reply….. “Kam – The doctor that says your problem has nothing to do with H. pylori – what does he think is the source of your stomach pain? If your stomach problem is not caused by the bacteria (which perhaps is why your test is negative),”…Here i just want to mention that my test for h.pylori was positive at the time of my endoscopy is done and also antral gastritis was found . Anyway right now i’m taking one tab of sompraz in morning and one tab normaxin in night before meal since last 15 or 20 days (one month course) as suggested by doctor….So here i just wanna know that should i go for another stool antigen test for h.pylori . whether this bug is eradicated or not?

    • Kam – So it has been a few months since you completed the triple dose therapy, correct? Since you have not had any relief from your symptoms, I’m guessing it wouldn’t hurt to take another stool antigen test. This way if you test negative after originally testing positive, then you would know that it is not H. pylori causing your gastritis. In regards to the antigen test, it is important to note that:

      False-negative results may be obtained on specimens from patients who have ingested selected medications (antimicrobials, proton pump inhibitors, bismuth preparations) within the 2 weeks prior to specimen collection. If clinically indicated, the test may be repeated on a new specimen obtained 2 weeks after stopping treatment with these medications. Positive results are not affected by medication.

      A positive result 7 days or more after starting therapy is indicative of ineffective treatment or recurrence. Testing for eradication should be performed at 4 or weeks post therapy; a negative result at this time indicates eradication of the infection.

      • So should I wait for 2 or 4 weeks (after the medication course) before this antigen stool test?

        • Kam- If it has been more than 4 weeks since your initial triple therapy, then you would only need to wait 2 weeks after stopping any other medications before taking the stool antigen test. You will need to ask your doctor, however, since these are general guidelines and your case may be different.

  15. Hi! Is there any difference between the nutricology brand and the Jarrow brand. I have been on the Jarrow brand for 2 months now. Thought I would try the Nutricology one since its vegetarian etc. Do you think it is okay to make the shift? After starting with Mastic Gum (I have had Pylori for 2 years now) I definitely feel better! Let me know about your experience with Nutricology.

    • Tora – I have taken both the Jarrow and the Nutricology brands of Mastic Gum and they both worked for me, I couldn’t tell any difference. If you prefer one over the other (i.e., vegetarian capsules), I don’t see any reason not to try them out. Glad you’re feeling better! 🙂

  16. Hi! I am H.pylori positive after medication of clarithromycine and metronidazole and lansoprazole (Prevacid) used for 14 days and after one month I did a stool antigen test and it’s still positive.
    Please I want to use herbal mediation like mastic gum so what is the procedure?
    Shall I take week 1: 1 g mastic gum before breakfast for week
    Week 2: 2 g mastic gum before breakfast and before lunch divided by two doses
    Week 3: 3 g mastic gum before breakfast and before lunch and before dinner divided by three doses
    And shall I used pure mastic gum swallowed with water or ? and can i also use a proton inhibitor like esomeprazole (Nexium) with mastic gum to get quick recovery? So please guide me.

    • Taifkhan – Since you went through the triple therapy, you may want to consider taking another stool antigen test because sometimes there are false positives.
      If you want to take mastic gum, the recommendation from studies suggest taking a total of 1 gram (1,000 mg) daily for a minimum of 2 weeks. Where did you find the dosage information that you referred to – increasing it to 3 grams?
      Yes, you can use pure mastic gum, instead of capsules, if you prefer. You can grind the resinous pieces into a powder and then swallow with water.
      There are no clinical references as to whether taking esomeprazole (Nexium) in combination to mastic gum will speed-up eradication of H. pylori, nor if there are any adverse side effects when taken together so I cannot say whether or not you should take it or not. Were you taking any other over-the-counter drugs in addition to the 3 drugs you mentioned while being treated?

  17. My GP gave me a blood test which came back negative, my gastroenterologist had me do a Breath Test which came back positive. Which is more accurate? He gave me a triple dose of antibiotics, with no relief. Have you ever heard of taking Manuka honey along with probiotics? Should I just take the honey or take honey and the gum?

    • Gilda – The urea breath test can have inconsistent results. The blood test is a little better, especially for negative results, but the stool antigen test (HPSA test) has been shown to be the most reliable. However, it cannot be taken if you are on any antibiotics, proton pump inhibitors, or peptol bismol medications. You have to wait at least 2 weeks to take the HSPA test or else a false-positive result may occur.

      I am not aware of any reason why Manuka honey cannot be taken with probiotics. I have taken both the Manuka honey and mastic gum with good results, but it’s up to you. Some people do well with just the Manuka honey while others have success with mastic gum.

  18. Claire Bear says:

    Hi all like most of you I have the same symptoms and have had triple treatment, but nothing has worked. I’m now trying mastika and honey – fingers crossed. It’s a bit ironic that I have H Pylori, as I’m a nutritionist and teach food safety! For you guys that have symptoms but tested negative, you may have a yeast infection or eat too much processed carbs and sugar. I suggest cutting out sugar and reducing carbs for 30 days and try a Vit C supplement

    • Claire – Hope the mastika and honey combo works for you. Let us know how it goes. And good suggestion for those testing negative, but still having symptoms. Candida yeast infections can cause gastrointestinal symptoms similar to H. pylori such as heartburn, gas, bloating, constipation or diarrhea, cramps, nausea, gastritis, colitis, etc.

  19. Since I have antibodies for h pylori and failed to finish a round of quad therapy due to it being intolerable, I am using mastic gum, triphala, cat’s claw, coconut oil, GSE, lemongrass oil, going gluten and dairy free. So far so good. Since I took peptobismol on the quad therapy I read on a medical site that in order to have a valid stool test I need to wait four weeks. Hopefully, I will report success.

  20. Concerned Momma says:

    My 4 almost 5 year old daughter was just diagnosed with h pylori. The pediatrician also wants to test my 2 year old son who is not eating well and well both children put things in their mouths! They also said my husband and I should be test as we both also have some GI symptoms. I prefer a more natural approach to things and decided I would just put the entire family on a holistic regiment! My question: would I dose my daughter :37lbs and son:25lbs the same as my husband and I? Asking their pediatrician would be of no use! I’ve asked about more holistic treatments and lifestyle before and was SHUT DOWN!! Can’t change dr because of insurance ;)!

    • Concerned Momma – I would not assume to dose your children the same as adults. However, I haven’t yet found any specifics for suggested holistic dosages for children. Also, children may not tolerate certain alternative treatments like adults. For example, regardless of dosage, a study determined that children ingesting mastic gum may develop diarrhea (Ford R, et al. Mastic absolute. Food Chem Toxicol . 1992;30(suppl):71S-72S). Depending on which alternative treatments you want to try i.e., manuka honey, mastic gum, DGL, etc., I would ask the manufacturer directly for a suggested dosage for your children. And yes, I doubt you’ll ever find a conventional doctor prescribe you anything but conventional drugs.

  21. 35 year old with bad breath says:

    Hi, is it ok to use the honey and the gum without a diagnosis h pylori? I have really bad breath that I believe is caused from h pylori – I haven’t gotten tested yet. I have tried everything to alleviate the bad breath but nothing seems to work. Also, will they work while I’m currently on antibiotics (just had some teeth pulled)? Thanks!

    • Manuka honey and mastic gum is relatively safe to use, but I cannot say whether it is definitely safe for you to use. Each person must use precaution when using any treatment, herbal or otherwise. And without a definite diagnosis you won’t know for sure whether you are treating H. pylori or not. You can always try the suggested dosages and monitor yourself to see whether it improves you bad breath or not. There is no data as to whether prescription antibiotics will affect the manuka honey or mastic gum efficacy.

  22. gilberto says:

    HI, can someone please tell me what is the name of this MASTIC GUM in Spanish? how is it named in Mexico? (if also some store that sells it in Mexico, great) Thanks in advance

    • Gilberto – Look for Pistacia lentiscus which is the scientific name of the Mastic shrub from which the mastic resin or “gum” is derived from. The scientific name doesn’t change and should be listed as an ingredient, no matter what country it is sold in.

  23. My stool test was negative, but once the PCP heard that I used alternative medicine he said “You probably didn’t have it in the first place.” It is very disconcerting to have been treated with harsh antibiotics, which made me so violently sick that I went to the ER after only 4 days on them, based on a positive blood antigen test.

    Since I was still having a bowel issue the PCP wanted me to have an endoscopy and colonoscopy, but I am delaying. Once I added malic acid to my diet, it opened up the bile duct normalizing my stool.

  24. Omg! This DARN auto correct made me sound so illiterate lol…. I’m going to try this again. Doc put me on 5mg percocet for back pain after a fall. I don’t plan on staying on it long and I don’t take it every day, but I DO take my mastic and manuka everyday. Is there any interactions that you know of between the two?

  25. HH – Thank you for the information. I have been suffering from this illness for many a year now and I just can’t take it any more. Nothing from the medical world has cured me long term, the meds can be worse than the illness. I’ve been ER’d once and hospitalized another time to no avail.

    On 7.9.2015 local clinic prescribed a battery of three different Rx’s – local Wal Greens pharmacy has quoted me, for all three, with all discounts applied..$335.00. Funny thing is as I’m taking the paper prescription from the Dr. she says “the treatment doesn’t always work the first time” – say what?! “We might need to try again…or maybe even super strong antibiotics.” been there done that no thank you. I’ll jump first, really!

    I am all in on the Mastic Gum, the logistics of the honey just will not work. Ordered through our friends at Amazon.com. $17.95 way kool

    I’ll update my status as I go.

    Thank you

    • Guy – Sorry you have been suffering with H. pylori for so long. Sounds like you are experiencing what many others have from using conventional treatments. I’m sure you have been prescribed all the usual meds – antibiotics, PPIs, acid-reducers, etc.. Was the $335 for similar-type drugs or for some other kinds of meds? Crazy expensive either way. Hope the Mastic Gum helps. We look forward to your updates.

      • Fran grecco says:

        Took all tests breath, stool, colonoscopy, was pre-medicated. Before tests docs still not sure want me to go for another stool test. I was very sick from antibiotics thought I was going to go to the hospital. I will take stool test but no more antibiotics. I started with mastic gum and 100 percent Manuka Honey – it was Kfactor 16. I hope it’s the right strength. Please let me know. Fran

        • Fran – KFactor is a proprietary “multi-stage authentication system” used by Wedderspoon’s brand of Manuka Honey. Currently, the first-stage indicates pollen grain amount. KFactor 16 guarantees at least 75% Manuka pollen grains in the honey. Unfortunately, that doesn’t tell us what the MGO (methylglyoxal activity) rating is, which is the antibacterial property that kills H. pylori. Wedderspoon states on their website that methylglyoxal will be identified in the “second phase” of KFactor, which is not currently available. I have contacted them to see if they can provide an equivalent MGO rating to the KFactor 16. I will let you know when (if) they respond.

  26. Majid Khan says:

    Hi, I am from Mumbai, India. I am really tired of searching for real manuka honey online, kindly suggest me what was the brand you used for your treatment and also from where have purchased it?
    As you say you have got good results. Even I want my problem (stomach problem with full symptoms of h.pylori) to be solved soon. Awaiting your reply. Thank you.

    • Majid – I have purchased UMF or MGO-rated Manuka Honey online from various brands and sources, including Amazon. However, I see that the Indian Amazon store has far fewer choices for manuka honey – I did not see one with either rating. I have purchased from Summer Glow Apiaries, which is based in New Zealand – where the Manuka bush grows, but they are somewhat expensive and I am not sure they will ship to India.

  27. I’ve tested negative for h pylori via stool test. I think it might be Candida overgrowth because I can’t rid my oral thrush, excessive gas, skin rashes that look like ringworms, and worst, fart breath! I’ve tried so many supplements and practically became vegan, cut out sugars and yeast, but no luck! Any suggestions?

  28. Doctor says my bb is from my mouth and to see dentist, but dentist says my mouth is fine. I don’t think conventional doctors here are really knowledgeable when it comes to this and it’s more of a guessing game along with antibiotics that I don’t want to take. I ended up buying some Manuka honey today. I hope it works, I’m at my wits end. I’ve heard of people saying it works for bb, but then again it depends on the source. I really think the link between oral thrush that won’t go away and skin rashes that came out of nowhere and now come and go have a contributing factor. I know my oral hygiene is great.

    • Ever since I got h pylori, my teeth have been getting much more plaque especially at bottom front near saliva glands…lack of saliva/excessive dry mouth.

      My dentist tells me it will rot my teeth, but dentists don’t know it all. My GI doc said some GI issues can give you bad breath. I had it for years from other GI problems.

      Talking a lot made it worse. Brushing the roof of mouth & tongue helped a little which I find also helps some stomach discomfort in the morning…almost kicks that gag reflex in, and maybe that is what helps my stomach? Or maybe its the mint or just getting the junk off the mouth and gargling for at least a minute helps too.

  29. Claire Bannerman says:

    Hi all
    I have had HP for 10 years! I tried to cure through diet and herbs, but had to take antibiotics.
    The antibiotics make your gut unbalanced, so don’t take expensive honey. As it feeds the yeast.
    Mastic gum is great, but you must take it for at least a month, then take it again for a month if you get symptoms again.
    It can take 3 months for your gut to rebalance after antibiotics. A low sugar, low carb diet high in veggies (low in fruit) will help.
    A PROBIOTIC will help with lose stools.
    I thought I was going to be ill forever, but thankfully the mastic gum has helped me and I’m 90% well 🙂

  30. Hello, I am HIV positive and I have had HPylori for 4 times. I am on my fourth round of antibiotic. I eat every healthy. Raw veggies daily, I even juice veggies daily. Question: should I stop the raw veggies because I have read that the h pylori can hide on the leaves of raw veggies. Should I cook all of my food to hear the pylori and kill the bacteria? I’m confused. Thanks for your help.

    • Bob – The only studies I have read concerning the transmission of H. pylori via raw vegetables is in countries where unsanitary conditions existed, i.e., irrigating crops with water contaminated by raw sewage. That doesn’t mean it is impossible for H. pylori to be on raw vegetables here in the U.S., but it’s not as common as in other countries. Also, I would guess the possibility of raw vegetables having H. pylori present would be higher if they were exposed and being handled more often by people in the stores. For example, tomatoes that customers pick over vs. a sealed bag of carrots. If you want to be 100% sure, then yes, you would have to cook your vegetables.

  31. Hello, would the honey and gum be able to be taken along with probiotics?

    • Gus – Yes, you can take probiotics along with manuka honey and mastic gum.

      • What foods are safe to eat? I am having a hard time finding what to eat that wont upset my stomach.

        • Gus – In general, you want to eat a well-balanced diet. Foods to avoid would be caffeinated, carbonated and alcoholic drinks; highly acidic and spicy foods as well as high-fat and fried foods. Also, reduce your intake of sugar and refined foods.

          • Thank you for your advise. My mastic gum and honey arrived so I will start the treatment right away.

          • Hello, I have about 2 months taking the Manuka honey with the mastic gum and i feel about 90%. I still have some symptoms …some gas, little nausea a few days…nothing major …should I continue with the Manuka honey and gum?

          • Agustin – If you are still having symptoms, then the bacteria is not completely eradicated. General dosage is for 2-4 months. If you feel that the Manuka honey is helping, then continue taking it until you feel 100%. It is advised, as with conventional antibiotics, to continue taking the honey even after you are feeling better to make sure the H. pylori is completely gone.

          • Agustin – If you are still having symptoms, then the bacteria is not completely eradicated. General dosage is for 2-4 months. If you feel that the Manuka honey and mastic gum is helping, then continue taking them until you feel 100%. It is advised, as with conventional antibiotics, to continue taking the honey and gum even after you are feeling better to make sure the H. pylori is completely gone.

          • Was also wondering if i should add DGL to the gum and honey.

          • Agustin – DGL won’t hurt. It may speed up the process, but there’s no way to know for sure.

          • Thank you so much for your help. I feeling much better. Hopefully i will be 100% in a few more weeks.

  32. Acid reflux and a hiatus hernia. Eat breakfast at 8am, lunch at 1pm. No food after 2pm as the food comes up at night and I have bad attacks. And a serious throat burn and could choke. Took mastic gum for two months with no relief at all. Cannot find manuka honey. Any advice, S

    • Shirley – Were you tested for H. pylori? What dose of mastic gum did you take daily? Do you take any OTC or prescription drugs for your acid reflux?

      Having a hiatus hernia complicates things since it it a physical abnormality. With the upper part of your stomach bulging (the hernia) up through the diaphragm, it allows food and acid to back up into your esophagus, causing the heartburn. Sometimes the only way to prevent that, without having surgery, is to alter how and what you eat, which you said you already are doing. This article discusses how manuka honey and mastic gum can treat an H. pylori infection which causes stomach ulcers. Not sure if it can help treat your cause of acid reflux. What does you physician offer as treatment?

  33. I have a question. I was h pylori positive for 3 times. Tired of antibiotics. Now I take monolaurin, black cumin seed oil., mastic gum, Manuka honey, zinc. Does h pylori cause a acid reflux?? I feel coughing after eating a food. Do you think it’s because of h pylori? Or is there any other problem.


    • Guru – There is some controversy over whether or not H. pylori causes acid reflux or GERD, in general. Some studies even say that if one has problems with acid reflux that an H. pylori infection can actually decrease the serverity of GERD symptoms since the pylori bacteria actually reduces stomach acid. But you may have problems with acid reflux that is independent of your H. pylori infection.

  34. I am feeling better with this treatment. My doctor told me that h pylori causes gastric problems and reflux. Do you know what’s the reason of coughing after eating food. Doctor said it’s because of h. pylori. My other tests were normal and no Hiatus hernia.

  35. Hello there, I have tested positive for H pylori in China while traveling here for my studies, I understand the pain that each one of you have been through because this illness is so terrible, It didn’t let me focus on my studies nor enjoying my stay here, I took my antibiotics and felt a bit better at least I didn’t have my constipation as before; heaviness on my chest; heartburn!! But I still have acid reflux without heartburn so I started taking manuka honey +30 for 1 week now and I already feel better! I hope I can be free of my symptoms 100% very soon, thank you for sharing your story, I pray that everybody will be healed!

  36. Hello , I also tested positive for H pylori. In Aug 2015 I took my triple antibiotics for 10 days. 4 weeks later antigen stool result negative. But I still have the symptoms – stomach pain, heartburn, gas, and nausea. The past week I feel so sick and tired. I took Manuka honey right after my triple antibiotics. Does the honey make a false result since I was on it during the time I was having the hpylori antigen stool test? I’m lost. Doc refused to retest. But I’m getting more sick. Thank you!

    • Mike – It could be possible to have a false-negative result from a stool antigen test for H. pylori if you were taking the Manuka honey within the 2 weeks prior to stool collection. It’s also possible to receive false-negatives results regardless. You could be retested to make sure. If your current doctor refuses, try another.

  37. O.k. here I go. I bought Manuka MGO 400+ and the Mastic Gum February 22, 2016. Let’s see how it goes.

    I had symptoms of H. Pylori and tested positive from colonoscopy over a year ago and my life has been a living hell since then. At 52, I have had a life of Gastro issues, but I knew the bloating and other symptoms were unusual. Somehow either the wicked antibiotics I took or constipation that maybe came from nausea meds sent me into a spiral of hell on earth.

    A rectal fissure abscess formed and I had to have emergency surgery. The pain was crippling and I thought I was dying. It took over 9 months of healing. I could not work, walk, eat well, travel, barely get out of bed, go the the bathroom without a bullet to bite on & now a bidet to have to use..during which every horrible gastro problem you can think of happened. with no one to help me, it was murder…

    To heck with the meds…I find no hope other than excepting my lot in life of a sudden invalid. I was as limber and athletic as a gymnast and active as the EverReady Bunny… now I need physical therapy because my back and muscles are so weak and crooked from bed recovery. I had to just about give up my leadership role at church with a mission humanitarian group… which is the hardest part… and my dog and my home are being neglected…and forget any love life…at times I can’t even bathe myself or comb my hair. I have every test it seems, so it appears to be all from the H. Pylori effects.

    I am an active clean freak with many other irons on the fire so I sure pray this remedy helps. my love for great eating I changed also to bland chicken and fish….I thought I was doing okay for a while and then symptoms come back with a vengeance . each time the symptoms reappear, I get weaker and weaker and I seem to get further away from how I was a couple years ago.

    I have new doctors and they just don’t get that this is not me! I feel like a heroin addict or something…when the pain & nausea is still not so bad, I still feel weak and lethargic. Yesterday I felt a bit better from some Dr Braggs vinegar, but I never know what really works because I am always recovering from some bought of horrific gastro issue so is it the pylori, or the constipation or diarrhea from it that is making me sick and weak. Either way, it is the pylori?

    It’s been hard just to have a good day of enough strength to go buy and research remedies…so let’s see how the masitc & manuka work. I am tired of my doctors not knowing the first thing about holistic cures. My GI doc recommended Align which has proved studies, but that did not prevent the last episode.

    So now I will try these. If they work I will share with my GI doc my results and then get new GI doc and new primary…neither know anything nor will discuss even proven holistic remedies. Probiotics might be holistic, but Align isn’t doing it for me and why did it take me, a layperson who they threat like an idiot when I suggest something, to find these proven results of the manuka & mastic.

  38. Hi there, I have just stopped my PPI medication as I am waiting two weeks to have the breath test to see if I test positive or not for H. pylori. During this two week wait period, am I able to take the mastic gum as this is a herb rather than an antibiotic? Or will it impact on the results of the H. pylori breathe test? Many thanks

  39. What is KFactor? Is 16 k the same as UMF 10?

    • Jenny – KFactor is only used by the Wedderspoon brand of manuka honey. Is KFactor 16 the same as UMF 10? No, because Wedderspoon’s KFactor measures different components than what UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) measures in the New Zealand brands of honey. You can read more of the explanation about KFactor in our response to Fran here.

      • So far the honey from Manuka Health brand is the only relief I’ve gotten in over a year.. Probiotics did little or nothing and antibiotics just about killed me..so I’m sticking with Manuka Health brand for a while. I bought the Mastic Gum, but I’d like to try one at a time to see what actually does or does not work.

  40. What is the best of way of taking the manuka honey? Straight from the spoon or with either crackers or bread? Some says that it is best to take it with either crackers or bread so that it coats the lining of your stomach. I don’t like crackers or bread, so I take the manuka honey straight from the spoon,but always wonder I am getting the healing benefits for H.pylori.

    • Jane – Some do say to take the manuka honey with a small piece of bread or a cracker. For example, Professor Peter Molan of the Honey Research Unit of the University of Waikato, suggests taking the manuka honey this way. The general explanation is that it will allow the honey to spend more time in your stomach to fight the h. pylori. However, I cannot find any research that supports this claim or not. Sounds logical, but there is no clinical proof of this. Many of the studies have been in vitro and not on humans so that’s part of the problem. If don’t want to take it with crackers or bread, you can take it with any kind of food you like.

  41. Hello! I’m from Spain (European Union), English is not my mother tongue, so I apologise for any mistake in my writing.
    I’ve Helicobacter Pylori and I want to eradicate it from my system, but no with the antibiotics combo we all are aware of, so I’m looking for a natural remedy that doesn’t harm me. I’ve read your statement about the Manuka honey and Mastic Gum and I have some questions for you if you kindly want to reply them.

    About the honey: The study that you mention is “in vitro”, and this means very little to me, if it was “in vivo” would be another story, as you well know. Another thing about honey is it’s sugar content (82 g. of sugar x 100 g. of product). Sugar sends my Helicobacter charge to de roof, I get sick every time I take honey, it feeds the bacteria and the discomfort is horrendous . Why should Manuka be different, having in mind that the microbial activity in vivo is not documented at all? It’s still sugar, isn’t it?

    About the Mastic Gum: A few years back I went through a four months treatment with NutriCology 1000mg capsules, 1 capsule in the morning (2 hrs before breakfast) + 1 capsule just before bedtime (3hrs after dinner). I observed a very strict regime during the four months intake. Once the treatment was over, I had a breath test and, unfortunately, it came out POSITIVE.
    The study you refer concerning the Mastic Gum was successful “in vitro” but, once again, had very poor results “in vivo”. In the study, a polymer was removed from the resin in order to achieve better results, which was successfully tested “in vitro”, but never “in vivo” because lack of time, but investigators add: “Equally, to date no epidemiological data exist to support such a prophylactic effect among the mastic gum-consuming population of Chios Island”. Not good expectations in view. Anyway, Is it worth the effort and money to take this treatment knowing that the polymer refered is not removed from the Mastic Gum now available in the market no matter what brand you buy?

    My last question, not trying to be impolite, Why do you back your statement in such clinical studies not helpful at all ?

    Thank you and best regards.

    • Antonio – Unfortunately, most alternative treatments (non-conventional, FDA unapproved) tend to have less in vivo studies, mostly due to cost and logistics. It’s certainly easier and more economical to test 1,000 in-vitro samples vs 1,000 patients. But then, as you ask, is it worth the effort and money to take natural treatments without the proof of clinical, in-vivo studies? In short, it’s a personal choice. What’s the alternative if you choose not to?

      As you stated, you prefer not to take the conventional antibiotic therapy. But for what reasons? I’m guessing, like others who choose not to, it is because of the severe side effects and because it is not 100% effective in all cases, despite in-vivo, clinical trials that were done before this treatment regimen became the standard.

      So if you do not want to take antibiotics, then the only other two options you have are either trying alternative treatments or doing nothing at all. You had no success with mastic gum, but I did. That would give us a 50% efficacy rate, but only a sample size of two. There have been more in-vivo studies with humans with mastic gum with about the same results. In this study, nearly half of the patients who took mastic gum for 14 days achieved H. pylori eradication.

      When you took mastic gum, did you have any relief of symptoms? There are many people who have H. pylori, but are, or become, asymptomatic. Another consideration is the source of how you became infected with pylori in the first place. Many people who go through conventional or alternative treatments never get better because they are constantly exposed to the bacteria and become re-infected. The source of H. pylori can be present in their daily life – sometimes through transmission from family members, pets, contaminated food or water, etc…

      Unless a better conventional treatment for H. pylori is discovered (they are currently working on a vaccine, for example), then your only other choice is alternative treatments. Which one is best? No one can say. Certainly the ones with more in-vivo studies would be preferred, but there aren’t any obvious choices. Mastic gum, DGL and Broccoli Sprouts (as mentioned in our other post) have more in vivo studies than manuka honey, but I don’t know if that automatically makes them better.

      It might be worth your time to read this more recent article, Exploring alternative treatments for Helicobacter pylori infection, from the World Journal of Gastroenterology. In short, they concluded that although alternative or allopathic treatments may not completely eradicate H. pylori, they still may provide positive effects by reducing pylori colonization, inflammation and resulting gastritis symptoms, and overall improvement of the gastrointestinal tract:

      There are no results indicating that any alternative treatment can truly eradicate H. pylori. In contrast, most of the findings have demonstrated that some agents exhibit good anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory and gastro-protective activities, which as a whole favour the resolution of gastric damage despite the fact that H. pylori is not completely eliminated. Therefore, those agents can be used as adjuvants of allopathic anti-H. pylori eradication therapy, but not as a monotherapy. As long as a vaccine or new antibiotics remain unavailable, the synergism of allopathic and alternative treatments is most likely the best choice.

  42. Hi can you please let me know if it’s safe to take mastic gum while breastfeeding. My little one is 6 months. Thank you.

    • Oksana – Information regarding the safety of taking mastic gum while breastfeeding is lacking. Research has shown that angiotensin-converting enzymes, (ACE) inhibitors, are present in the leaves of the Mastic shrub (Pistacia lentiscus L.) which can be harmful to the fetus in the first trimester. Although ACE inhibitors are present in the leaves and not in the resin (mastic gum) which is what is used as a treatment for H. pylori, I would not recommend taking it while breastfeeding.

  43. Thanks for the detailed information on manuka and mastic gum. I started taking manuka honey (Wedderspoon 16+, 1/2 teaspoon 30 min before b,l,d) a week ago and experienced drastic water retention/weight gain. I’m male and this weight is being distributed like my hormones are screwed up including breast enlargement. Any idea why, any one else experience the same?

    • Peter – Manuka honey does contain more vitamins, minerals, enzymes and unique antibacterial properties than normal honey, but I wouldn’t expect water retention and hormonal disruption as a possible side effect unless you are having some kind of allergic reaction to the honey. Have you ever had any problems eating other types of honey? I would stop taking the honey and see if your symptoms subside. If they don’t, you should see your physician for other possible causes.

  44. Hi there,

    I have been diagnosed with h pylori for the 2nd time. I had it in 2009 and managed to get rid of it with triple therapy, however it was horrid and I am currently delaing with anxiety following a virus at the beginning of the year. I am an acid reflux suffer so I take pantoprazole 40mg long term. I have recently started taking mastic gum, manuka honey & a probiotic supplement and I’m 5 days in, i have been experiencing more heartburn than usual, wind/gas, nausea etc, all of which I know are symptoms of h pylori but how long does it generally take to make any effect please? I did check with a GP and they couldn’t see why my medication would interfere in any way even though he knew nothing about mastic gum etc.

    • Emma – Your symptoms may be a die-off reaction (Herxheimer) and things may get worse than better for awhile. It could last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Everyone is different. How long have you been taking Pantoprazole? I’m sure your aware that the drug also causes similar side effects such as gas and nausea.
      Also, pantoprazole, being a proton-pump inhibitor, reduces stomach acid which in turn, especially with long-term use, can promote bacterial overgrowth, including H. pylori. And bacterial overgrowth is a major factor in heartburn and GERD (acid reflux).
      From Chris Kresser’s post on getting rid of GERD:

      The mainstream medical approach to treating heartburn and GERD involves taking acid stopping drugs for as long as these problems occur. Unfortunately, because these drugs not only don’t address the underlying cause of these problems but may make it worse, this means that people who start taking antacid drugs end up taking them for the rest of their lives.

      This is a serious problem because acid stopping drugs promote bacterial overgrowth, weaken our resistance to infection, reduce absorption of essential nutrients, and increase the likelihood of developing IBS, other digestive disorders, and cancer.

      I’m not suggesting that you stop taking Pantoprazole, but you should be aware of its effects on your gut flora, especially since you have had recurring H. pylori infections.

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