Generic Name: Royal Jelly
Brand Names: Bee Wise, Royal Jelly
Drug Class: Herbals
Available Dosage Forms: Powder, capsule, tablet, liquid, and topical
What is Royal Jelly?
Royal Jelly is a gel-like milky substance produced by worker honeybees, Apis mellifera. It is used to treat several internal diseases and skin problems. Lipids constitute the major proportion of the secretion.
The principal lipid Royal Jelly Acid or Queen Bee Acid, 10H2DA, exerts neuromodulatory and neuroprotective effects in animals and humans.1 Enteric neuron in the gut participates in the synthesis of the mood regulatory neurotransmitter serotonin. Neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression compromise the integrity of the brain-gut axis and may manifest as stomach ulcers. The 10H2DA from Royal Jelly inhibits stress-induced gastric ulcers and increases stress resistance of gut-friendly bacteria.
Depression often lowers the expression of neuron growth factors. 10H2DA simulates the action of brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and, as a result, enhances the neuron manufacturing capability of the CNS.
In a study conducted by Weiser, Grimshaw, Wynalda, Mohajeri, and Butt, 12-24mg/kg of Royal Jelly was administered per day in anxiety-induced rats for five months. It was observed that Royal Jelly caused a significant improvement in anxiety symptoms of the rats at the end of the experiment.2 It increased the health, growth, and viability of hippocampal mitochondria in rats. This was done through lipid aided conversion of neuron precursor cells into oligodendrocytes, astrocytes, and neurons, thereby eliciting antidepressive effects in rat brains.2
How to use Royal Jelly?
Royal Jelly can be taken as capsule or tablet supplements. It can also be taken in its unprocessed form; however, it only lasts for two weeks in the refrigerator, which is a disadvantage since it is expensive. Royal Jelly can also be applied topically on wounds and skin irritation; however, it should be applied with caution since it can cause scalp irritation and inflammation. It should not be used after its expiration date.
Consult your doctor before taking any Royal Jelly supplements since dosages depend on individual requirements. Moreover, Royal Jelly should not be used in people with certain conditions. Typical dosage ranges from 300-6000 mg per day. It is best to start with a lower dose to avoid severe reactions. High dosages should be split throughout the day and not be consumed at once.
What are the side effects of Royal Jelly?
Royal Jelly may induce mild side effects, including:
-Insomnia in women
It is possibly safe to use; however, adverse effects may occur at high doses, including:
-Bronchial asthma crisis
-Dangerously low blood pressure
Who should not use Royal Jelly?
-People with bronchial asthma
-People with Addison’s disease
-Those with cancers in the acute phase
-Those with genetic malabsorption
-Pregnant and lactating women
-Those with skin allergies such as dermatitis
-Those with chronic low blood pressure
Royal Jelly interacts with anti-hypertensive and anti-coagulant drugs. Interactions with other medications have not yet been established; however, consult your doctor before beginning therapy with Royal Jelly supplements.
- Ali AM, Hendawy AO. Royal jelly acid, 10-hydroxy-trans-2-decenoic acid, for psychiatric and neurological disorders: How helpful could it be?!. Edelweiss J Food Sci Technol. 2019;1(1):1-4. doi:33805/2765-8821.101
- Weiser MJ, Grimshaw V, Wynalda KM, Mohajeri MH, Butt CM. Long-Term Administration of Queen Bee Acid (QBA) to Rodents Reduces Anxiety-Like Behavior, Promotes Neuronal Health and Improves Body Composition. Nutrients. 2017;10(1):13. Published 2017 Dec 23. doi:10.3390/nu10010013