Friday, April 19, 2019

How are raw honey and regular honey different?

Studies show that raw honey contains a variety of beneficial ingredients.

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Raw honey contains specific components that can offer health benefits. Pasteurization and other processes may remove or reduce some of these elements, which include:

  • bee pollen, which has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties
  • bee propolis, a glue-like substance that helps keep the hive together
  • certain vitamins and minerals
  • enzymes
  • amino acids
  • antioxidants...

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Honey-Impregnated Dressings Significantly Reduced Healing Time of Non-Healing Wounds in Home Care Setting

Applying honey dressings to non-healing wounds in elderly persons receiving home care

Journal of Tissue Viability
Available online 13 April 2019

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Highlights

• Honey is one of naturally occurring remedies that can be used in the treatment of non-healing wounds.
• Honey-impregnated dressings significantly reduced the healing time of non-healing wounds in home care setting.
• Honey-impregnated dressings reduced wound pain intensity in elderly.

Objective

The study aimed to determine the clinical effectiveness of honey dressings in the management of non-healing wounds in elderly persons receiving home care.

Material and methods

Design: a prospective interventional study. The sample comprised 40 Czech home care clients (aged over 65 years) with non-healing wounds who were randomly assigned to two groups. Wounds were treated with honey (intervention group) or conventional (controls) dressings. Each wound was studied for three months. A detailed description of a wound (location, size, wound bed, edges, amount of exudate, odor, adjacent skin) were recorded. Wounds were assessed with the Wound Healing Continuum and pain intensity with the Visual Analog Scale.

Results

Over the 3-month period, 16 (80%) individuals in the intervention group had their wounds completely healed, as compared with only six (30%) controls. There was no statistically significant difference in wound size between the groups on Day 1 (p = 0.1801). Ninety days later, the difference in wound size between the groups was statistically significant (p = 0.0041). There was a statistically significant difference in pain intensity between the two groups (p = 0.0007), with higher pain scores being indicated by controls.

Conclusion

The study results showed that the application of honey dressings to non-healing wounds resulted in faster healing, wound size reduction and lower pain intensity.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Red Propolis Alagoas Shows Significant Antimicrobial Activity

Braz. J. Biol. vol.79 no.3 São Carlos July/Sept. 2019

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The study aimed to evaluate the antimicrobial activity, antioxidant, toxicity and phytochemical screening of the Red Propolis Alagoas. Antimicrobial activity was evaluated by disk diffusion method. Determination of antioxidant activity was performed using the DPPH assay (1.1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl), FTC (ferric thiocyanate) and determination of phenolic compounds by Follin method. Toxicity was performed by the method of Artemia salina and cytotoxicity by MTT method. The phytochemical screening for the detection of allelochemicals was performed. The ethanol extract of propolis of Alagoas showed significant results for antimicrobial activity, and inhibitory activity for Staphylococcus aureus and Candida krusei.

The antioxidant activity of the FTC method was 80% to 108.3% hydrogen peroxide kidnapping, the DPPH method showed an EC50 3.97 mg/mL, the content of total phenolic compounds was determined by calibration curve gallic acid, resulting from 0.0005 mg/100 g of gallic acid equivalent. The extract was non-toxic by A. salina method. The propolis extract showed high activity with a higher percentage than 75% inhibition of tumor cells OVCAR-8, SF-295 and HCT116. Chemical constituents were observed as flavonones, xanthones, flavonols, and Chalcones Auronas, Catechins and leucoanthocyanidins. It is concluded that the extract can be tested is considered a potential source of bioactive metabolites.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

South African Propolis Boosts Antimicrobial Activity, Minimizes Cell Damage

The new buzz: Investigating the antimicrobial interactions between bioactive compounds found in South African propolis

J Ethnopharmacol. 2019 Apr 9:111867

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ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE:

Propolis, a resinous substance produced by the Apis mellifera bee, contains a number of flavonoids sourced from plants found in the surrounding region. Whilst bees use this substance to seal off and protect the beehive, humans have used propolis therapeutically for centuries, making use of its antibacterial, antiseptic, antipyretic and wound healing properties, among others. South African propolis is rich in the flavonoids pinocembrin, galangin, and chrysin and very little previous research has been conducted on the antimicrobial effects of these compounds.

AIM OF THE STUDY:

To obtain an understanding of the antimicrobial activity of the compounds pinocembrin, galangin, and chrysin, both independently and in combination.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The compounds pinocembrin, galangin and chrysin were investigated for interactive antimicrobial activity by determining the minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC), minimum bactericidal concentrations (MBC), anti-quorum sensing activity, biofilm studies, and cytotoxicity studies (brine shrimp lethality assay).

RESULTS:

Minimum inhibitory concentration results demonstrated that combinations of compounds showed better inhibitory activity than single compounds. When the flavonoids were tested in combination using the MIC assay, synergy was noted for 22% of the 1:1 ratio combinations and for 66% of the triple 1:1:1 ratio combinations. Similarly, MBC results showed bactericidal activity from selected combinations, while the compounds on their own demonstrated no cidal activity. Quorum sensing studies showed that compound combinations are more effective at inhibiting bacterial communication than the individual compounds. Biofilm assays showed that the highest percentage inhibition was observed for the triple combination against E. coli at 24 h. Finally, brine shrimp lethality studies revealed that combinations of the three compounds had reduced cytotoxicity when compared to the individual compounds.

CONCLUSION:

The results obtained in this study demonstrate that the compounds found in South African propolis work synergistically to achieve an optimal antimicrobial effect, whilst simultaneously minimizing cytotoxicity.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Propolis Protects the Heart From Damage Caused by Prolonged Hypothermic Preservation

Myocardial protection by propolis during prolonged hypothermic preservation.

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Cryobiology. 2019 Apr 11. pii: S0011-2240(19)30009-4

Oxidative stress is involved in the pathogenesis of ischemia-reperfusion during myocardial transplantation. Therefore, graft preservation solutions may be improved by supplementation with antioxidants to minimize graft dysfunction caused by cold ischemic injury. Propolis is a polyphenol-rich substance which has an important antioxidant activity. The protective effect of propolis against oxidative stress induced by prolonged cold preservation of heart was investigated. Mice were subjected to a hypothermic model of ischemia in which hearts were preserved for 24 h at 4 °C in Krebs-Hensleit (KH) solution in the absence or presence of propolis concentrations (50, 150 and 250 μg/ml). Levels of released Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) and Troponine-I (Trop I) were assessed in the preservation solution and histological assessement of heart ischemia injuries was performed. Oxidative stress biomarkers malondialdehyde (MDA) and advanced oxidation protein products (AOPP) and antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) were assessed in cardiac tissue. Mitochondria were isolated from stored hearts and production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was tested. Propolis supplementation protected efficiently hearts during preservation by reducing significantly levels of lipids and proteins oxidation and restoring activities of antioxidant enzymes. Also, propolis preserved tissue integrity altered by hypothermic ischemia in a concentration-dependent manner. Propolis reduced significantly the rate of H2O2 produced by mitochondrial respiration, the best antioxidant effect being obtained at the highest propolis concentration (250 μg/ml). Algerian propolis is a non-temperature sensitive scavenger that protects heart from oxidative damage induced by prolonged hypothermic ischemia.

Friday, April 12, 2019

Royal Jelly May Help Treat Diabetes


Effects of Royal jelly on metabolic variables in diabetes mellitus: A systematic review.

Complement Ther Med. 2019 Apr;43:20-27

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Diabetes mellitus is one of the most common endocrine disorders in the world. This systematic review was conducted with focus on the current knowledge on the effect of royal jelly on metabolic variables in diabetes mellitus.

PubMed, Scopus, Embase, ProQuest and Google Scholar databases were searched from inception until June 2018. All clinical trials and animal studies that evaluated the effects of royal jelly on diabetes mellitus, and were published in English-language journals were eligible. Studies that provided insufficient outcomes were excluded. Out of 522 articles found in the search, only twelve articles were eligible for analysis. Seven studies showed a significant reduction in FBS, and one reported HbA1c decrease following royal jelly supplementation.

Although royal jelly supplementation resulted in significant reductions in HOM A-I R in three studies, the findings on insulin levels were controversial. In addition, royal jelly substantially improved serum levels of triglycerides, cholesterol, HDL, LDL, VLDL and Apo-A1 in diabetes mellitus. In addition, royal jelly resulted in a decrease oxidative stress indicators and increase antioxidant enzymes levels.

In conclusion, royal jelly could improve glycemic status, lipid profiles and oxidative stress in diabetes mellitus. However, exploring the underlying mechanisms warrants further studies.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Honey Shows Bacteriostatic and Bactericidal Activity Against MRSA - Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus

Antibacterial Activity of Honey against Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus: A Laboratory-Based Experimental Study

International Journal of Microbiology
Volume 2019, Article ID 7686130, 9 pages

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Background. Antimicrobial drug resistance is one of the serious issues this world is facing nowadays, and increased cost of searching for effective antimicrobial agents and the decreased rate of new drug discovery have made the situation increasingly worrisome.

Objective. The aim of this study is to determine in vitro antibacterial activity of honey against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates from wound infection.

Methods. An experimental study was conducted from May to November 2017. Methicillin resistance was detected using cefoxitin (30 μg) and oxacillin (1 μg) antibiotic discs. Different concentrations of honey (25–100% v/v) were tested against each type of clinical isolates obtained from wound infection. A preliminary sensitivity test was done to all types of honey by using disk diffusion while minimum inhibitory concentration and minimum bactericidal concentration were determined for the most potent honey by the broth dilution technique. All statistical analysis was performed by using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 20.

Results. In this study, 36 bacterial isolates were recovered from 50 specimens, showing an isolation rate of 72%. The predominant bacteria isolated from the infected wounds were Staphylococcus aureus (15, 41.7%). Among identified Staphylococcus aureus, methicillin resistance accounts for 10 isolates (27.8%). All isolates showed a high frequency of resistance to tetracycline. Four collected honey varieties exhibited antibacterial activity, while the strongest inhibitory activity was demonstrated by honey-2 at 75% v/v. The mean MIC and MBC of honey-2 ranged from 9.38 to 37.5% v/v.

Conclusions. Tested honey has both a bacteriostatic and bactericidal activity. Among the tested honey, “honey-2” had high antibacterial potency than others.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Dietary Propolis Supplementation Boosts Egg Production


Propolis alleviates the negative effects of heat stress on egg production, egg quality, physiological and immunological aspects of laying Japanese quail.

PLoS One. 2019 Apr 9;14(4):e0214839

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The present work was carried out to investigate the effects of dietary propolis supplementation to laying Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) on egg production, egg quality, physiological and immunological aspects under heat stress conditions. A total of 200, 21-day-old, Japanese quail females were distributed equally into standard wired cages in two identical environmentally-controlled rooms (10 cages per room, 10 birds per cage). From 29-70 d of age, the quail birds in the first room remained at a normal temperature of 24°C (C group), whereas the quail birds in the second room were kept under heat stress at 35°C (HS group).

Each group was further assigned to 2 propolis subgroups (5 cages per subgroup); one of them received a basal diet without propolis supplementation (-PR subgroup), while, the other received 1 g propolis/ kg basal diet (+PR subgroup). In the present study, performance and egg production of laying quail were significantly (P < 0.001) impaired by HS treatment and improved by the PR treatment. Similarly, the negative and positive effects of HS and PR, respectively, were appeared on the egg shell thickness and yolk index. Stress indicators in laying quail were significantly (P < 0.001) increased by HS, while, PR significantly (P < 0.05) moderated these levels in the HS+PR group when compared to the HS-PR quail group.

In addition to the positive impact of PR on the plasma levels of calcium, phosphorus, and albumin, it also normalized the plasma levels of alanine aminotransferase and cholesterol in the heat-stressed quail birds. Moreover, the quail birds in the HS groups expressed lower immunological aspects than those in the C group, while, the addition of propolis to the diets enhanced the immune status of laying quail birds under HS conditions.

These results strongly suggest that dietary propolis supplementation could be a successful attempt to maintain the performance and egg production of laying Japanese quail at convenient levels under heat stress conditions.

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Pinocembrin, a Flavanone Found in Honey, Exhibited Strongest Inhibition of Zika Virus Replication


Antiviral activity of pinocembrin against Zika virus replication.

Antiviral Res. 2019 Apr 5. pii: S0166-3542(18)30601-6

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Zika virus (ZIKV) is a mosquito-borne virus that has garnered a lot of attention in recent years, due to the explosive epidemic from 2014 to 2016. Since its introduction in the Americas in late 2014, ZIKV has spread at an unprecedented rate and scale throughout the world and infected millions of people. Its infection has also been associated with severe neurological disorders like Guillain-Barré syndrome and microcephaly in fetuses. Despite these, there is currently no approved antiviral against ZIKV. In this study, an immunofluorescence-based high throughput screen was conducted on a library of 483 flavonoid derivatives to identify potential anti-ZIKV compounds. Flavonoids, which are natural polyphenolic compounds found in plants, represent an attractive source of antivirals due to their abundance in food and expected low toxicity. From the primary screen, three hits were selected for validation by cell viability and viral plaque reduction assays. Pinocembrin, a flavanone found in honey, tea and red wine, was chosen for downstream studies as it exhibited the strongest inhibition of ZIKV infection in human placental JEG-3 cells (IC50 = 17.4 μM). Time-course studies revealed that pinocembrin acts on post-entry process(es) of the ZIKV replication cycle. Furthermore, pinocembrin inhibits viral RNA production and envelope protein synthesis based on quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR) and Western blot analyses. This study has demonstrated for the first time the in vitro anti-ZIKV activity of pinocembrin.

Monday, April 08, 2019

Propolis Soothes a Sore Throat (antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant)


This Might Be The Fastest All-Natural Way To Soothe A Sore Throat

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Bees create propolis by gathering the sticky resin from tree buds and bark, which gets combined with enzymes in their mouths to yield a substance that's antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and an antioxidant. This propolis is then applied as a varnish on the cells of the honeycomb to help seal up cracks and create doorways, all the while helping prevent disease.

"It contains a whole variety of health benefits," says Dr. Shah. "There are hundreds of natural antibacterial compounds, amino acids, and polyphenols. It's most significantly known in history for its infection-healing abilities, and Egyptians even used it during mummification. It has a subtle numbing quality as well."

So it makes sense that a bee propolis throat spray can, in fact, ease pain and possibly even help fight the viral infection causing it. Even better, there are several high-quality options to choose from. Here, check out a few of our favorites, some of which contain additional anti-inflammatory herbs, and all of which are small enough to take on a plane with your carry-on luggage.

Sunday, April 07, 2019

Propolis May Help Treat Type 2 Diabetes (Glycemic Control)


The efficacy of propolis on markers of glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Phytother Res. 2019 Apr 5

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BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:

The impetus for the current study was to evaluate the efficacy of propolis supplementation on markers of glycemic status in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).

METHODS:

A comprehensive search was conducted in PubMed, Scopus, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, and Google Scholar up to August 2018, identifying randomized controlled trials investigating the effect of propolis supplementation on glycemic markers in adults with T2DM. Cochrane Collaboration tool was used to evaluate the risk of bias assessment. A random-effects model was applied in the meta-analysis to compensate for potential heterogeneity among the included studies.

RESULTS:

Six randomized controlled trials comprising 373 participants were included in the systematic review and meta-analysis. The results of the meta-analysis revealed significant reductions in fasting plasma glucose (-13.51 mg/dl; 95% CI [-24.98, -2.04]) and hemoglobin A1C (-0.52%; 95% CI [-0.94, -0.10]) concentrations following propolis supplementation. However, no significant lowering effect was observed in fasting insulin levels (-0.53 pmol/L; 95% CI [-1.69, 0.63]) or homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (-0.543; 95% CI [-1.72, 0.64]).

CONCLUSION:

This systematic review and meta-analysis suggested that propolis supplementation may be effective in controlling glycemic levels for T2DM patients. Further studies are needed to confirm these results.

Saturday, April 06, 2019

Syrian Honey Bee Venom Shows Antioxidant, Antibacterial, Anti-Cancer Activity


First Characterization of The Venom from Apis mellifera syriaca, A Honeybee from The Middle East Region

Toxins (Basel). 2019 Mar 30;11(4)

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Bee venom is a mixture of several components with proven therapeutic benefits, among which are anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and various cardiovascular conditions. In this work, we analyzed for the first time the proteomic content and biological properties of the crude venom from Apis mellifera syriaca, a honeybee from the Middle East region.

Using high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, we evidence the venom contains phospholipase A2, hyaluronidase, mast cell-degranulating peptide, adolapin, apamin, and melittin. The latter was purified by solid phase extraction method (SPE) and tested in parallel with crude venom for biological activities. Precisely, crude venom-but not melittin-exhibited antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains. Alongside, hemolytic activity was observed in human blood subjected to the venom at high doses.

A. mellifera syriaca venom displayed antioxidant activities, and not surprisingly, PLA2 catalytic activity. Eventually, the venom proved to exert antiproliferative effects against MCF-7 and 3T3 cancer cells lines. This first report of a new bee venom opens new avenues for therapeutic uses of bee venoms.

Friday, April 05, 2019

Columbian Propolis Derivatives Show High Antimicrobial Activity, Antioxidant Potential


New Δ-tocotrienol derivatives from Colombian propolis

Nat Prod Res. 2019 Apr 2:1-8

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Two new δ-tocotrienol derivatives with oxidized terminal chain: 5,6-dioxo-garcinoic acid (trans-13'-carboxy-5,6-dioxo-δ-tocotrienol) (2) and 5-hydroxy-8b-oxo garcinoic acid (trans-13'-carboxy-5-hydroxy-8b-oxo-δ-tocotrienol) (3), together with one known derivative garcinoic acid (trans-13'-carboxy-δ-tocotrienol) (1) were isolated from a Colombian propolis. Garcinoic acid was found as a propolis constituent for the first time.

The isolated compounds and crude ethanolic extract demonstrated high antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans (MICs range: 10-39 μg/ml) as well as promising antioxidant potential in DPPH assay. Compound 3 displayed highest radical scavenging activity, even higher than that of dl-α-tocopherol, used as a positive control.

Thursday, April 04, 2019

Propolis May Help Treat Type-2 Diabetes


Propolis supplementation improves glycemic and antioxidant status in patients with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study

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Complement Ther Med. 2019 Apr;43:283-288

OBJECTIVES:

The prevalence of type 2 diabetes has risen dramatically in recent years. There are many different safe therapies used for diabetes and also number of natural supplements that can be used to manage diabetes. We assessed the effect of oral propolis supplementation on blood glucose, insulin resistance and antioxidant status in type 2 diabetes.

METHODS:

We conducted a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial for 8-week. Sixty two patients with type 2 diabetes (30-55 years of age) were randomly assigned in two group, propolis (n = 31) and placebo (n = 31). Patients were given doses of 500 mg, three times a day (1500 mg), of propolis or placebo three time a day. The fasting blood sugar (FBS), two-hour postprandial glucose (2-hp), insulin, insulin resistance (IR), hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and activity of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) were measured at the beginning and end of the study. Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS software.

RESULTS:

After two month, FBS, 2-hp, insulin, IR, HbA1c was significantly decreased in patients treated with propolis compared with placebo group (p < 0.05). Additionally intake of propolis significantly increased the blood levels of TAC and activity of GPx and SOD (p < 0.05).

CONCLUSION:

Propolis treatment can be helpful as a diet supplement in patients with type 2 diabetes through improvement in glycemic status, reduction in insulin resistance and amelioration in antioxidant status. This supplement without side effects can increase the effectiveness of prescribing drugs in diabetes.

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

Propolis Superior to Acyclovir in Treating Herpes Viruses (HSV-1, Lesions)


Bee products and the treatment of blister-like lesions around the mouth, skin and genitalia caused by herpes viruses-A systematic review

Complement Ther Med. 2019 Apr;43:81-84

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OBJECTIVES:

To assess the value of bee products with respect to antiviral efficacy against herpes viruses.

DESIGN:

A systematic review was done using the JUSTfind System of the Justus-Liebig-University Gießen and Scopus.

RESULTS:

Three trials on honey and 6 trials on propolis were conducted. Each trial provided evidence that these two bee products are interesting alternatives to acyclovir, especially propolis, which was found to be superior to acyclovir in 4 trials.

CONCLUSIONS:

The evidence from these trials suggests that propolis is the best of all natural possibilities in the treatment of herpetic skin lesions, especially those related to HSV-1. Future studies should analyse if propolis could be an adjunct to treatment with acyclovir. For lesions in the oral cavity, honey could be an interesting alternative.