Saturday, January 31, 2009

Honey Blocks Communications Between Bacteria

Quorum Sensing Inhibitory and Antimicrobial Activities of Honeys and the Relationship with Individual Phenolics
Food Chemistry, Article in Press

Quorum sensing (QS) inhibitory activity of 29 unifloral honeys was evaluated using the bacterial model Cromobacterium violaceum. The tested honeys were able to inhibit the production of acyl-homoserine lactones (AHLs) produced by C. violaceum at 0.1 g/ml.

However, chestnut and linden honey samples showed the highest inhibitory activity, while orange and rosemary were less effective in inhibiting QS. When honey samples from the same floral origin obtained from different geographical regions were compared, they showed similar QS inhibitory activity.

Thus, one of the factors which influence the inhibitory activity could be derived from the floral origin, independently of the geographic location. It was observed that unifloral honey samples showed “non-peroxide” anti-QS activity, which was not linearly correlated with total and individual phenolic compounds.

The obtained results showed that the preservative properties of honey could be due to both the antimicrobial properties and the QS inhibitory capacity.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Mimosa Pollen Has High Antioxidant Activity

Antioxidant Activity of Sonoran Desert Bee Pollen
Food Chemistry, Article in Press

Bee pollen (pollen collected by honey bees) was collected in the high intensity ultraviolet (UV) Sonoran desert and analyzed by the DPPH (radical 2,2-diphenyl-1-picryhydrazyl) assay and the FRAP (ferric reducing-antioxidant power) assay on six different pollen samples and in eight different water miscible solvents at 50 mg/ml…

The Mimosa pollen sample displayed the highest antioxidant activity. Total polyphenolics, flavanols, flavones were determined, and the results are reported in milligrams of gallic acid, quercetin and naringenin per gram of pollen, respectively.

There was good correlation between antioxidant activity and total phenolics. The order of effectiveness of the pollen samples in regard to antioxidant activity was determined and the most effective extraction solvents are discussed. Finally, solid phase micro-extraction, coupled with gas chromatography- mass spectroscopy was utilized to identify and quantify polyphenolic compounds known to have free radical scavenging activity in the pollen samples.

Bees Can 'Count', New Study Shows

Bees are able to recognise numbers up to four, according to the results of an Australian study into insect numeracy.
By Matthew Moore, The Telegraph (UK), 1/27/2009

Scientists had believed that counting abilities were exclusive to vertebrates but the new research suggests that insects also possess rudimentary number awareness.

Tests showed that honeybees were able to tell the difference between patterns containing two and three dots, and researchers believe they could be trained to recognise four dot patterns as well.

The bees do not technically "count" but are able to notice and recall how many dots they see, according to the team at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Vision Science in Australia who carried out the research.

"We never expected to find such abilities in insects," said Dr Shaowu Zhang, chief investigator at the centre.

"Our feeling now is that – so far as these very basic skills go – there is probably no boundary between insects, animals and us."

In the study, bees were flown into a maze through an entrance marked with either two or three dots. They had to remember this number when the maze forked into two paths – one marked with two dots, the other with three – in order to reach a sugar-water reward…

The team's paper, Number-based visual generalisation in the honeybee, appears in the international journal Plos One…

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Call for Papers for Apitherapy Conference in Germany

7th German Apitherapy Congress, Expo and Workshops with International Participation

When: March 26-31, 2009
Where: Passau, Germany, Hotel IBB

Contact Dr. Stefan Stangaciu, president of the German Apitherapy Society: drstangaciu@apitherapie.de and drstangaciu@apitherapy.com

Official languages will be English and German, but questions, comments and discussions can be translated from many other languages such as French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Romanian, Slovenian, Slovakian, Russian, Japanese, and Arabic.

Propolis Has Radioprotective Effect on Human Cells

Evaluation of Radioprotective Effects of Propolis and Its Flavonoid Constituents: In Vitro Study on Human White Blood Cells
Phytotherapy Research, 2009 Jan 22

This in vitro study aimed to evaluate the possible radioprotective effects of the natural substances WSDP, caffeic acid, chrysin and naringin on gamma-irradiated human white blood cells…

The results obtained by the alkaline comet study indicate favourable toxicity profiles of propolis and its polyphenolic components, and confirmed the radioprotective abilities comparable to the chemical radioprotector AET. WSDP and its polyphenolic components were able to reduce the number of necrotic cells.

None of tested compounds induced significant genotoxicity, but all of them offered a quite measurable protection against DNA damage. WSDP was found to be the most effective in diminishing the levels of primary and more complex cytogenetic DNA damage in white blood cells.

Considering its complex composition, to undoubtedly explain the underlying mechanisms of cyto/radioprotective effects, further studies are needed.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Thai Firm Launches Royal Jelly Skin Care Line

Watsons’ Bees Swarm Around Siam Square
ThaiPR.net, 1/28/2009

Watsons, Your Personal Store, launched its latest skincare collection ‘Be Gorgeous’ by arranging a swarm of beautiful bees to create a real live buzz by distributing sample products to passersby at Siam Square. Be Gorgeous products are infused with natural Royal Jelly, acknowledged for its moisture preserving and gentle nourishing qualities…

Honey Recommended for Skin Care, Throat Pain, Coughs

More Uses For Honey
St Louis Post-Dispatch, 1/23/2009

Make a soothing facial treatment: Blend 2 tablespoons of honey with 1/2 cup of ground oatmeal. Add a few teaspoons of water to thin the consistency to preferences. After cleansing your face, apply the mixture evenly. After 30 minutes, remove with a soft, damp washcloth. Admire your glowing skin!

Enjoy a milk and honey bath: Add around 1/3 cup of honey to 2 1/4 cups of milk. Mix thoroughly. You can even add a few drops of essential oil to give your honey milk bath additional scent. Place into your bath water and enjoy.

Treat minor skin abrasions and wounds. Honey has been shown to be a good antibacterial and antifungal agent and has mild anti-inflammatory properies. Apply a small amount to a wound or burn to keep unhealthy bacteria at bay and speed up the healing process.

Make a soothing honey body moisturizer. Mix 1/2 cup of honey with 1 cup of cold water and a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. Mix thoroughly and apply to your entire body after your shower.

Relieve sore throat pain. Mix honey with a little lemon juice and take several teaspoons a day when you have a sore throat. This has wonderful soothing properties for a sore throat.

Stop a cough. The same mixture of honey and lemon juice used for sore throat pain can help relieve the symptoms of a cough.

Mix honey with olive oil and apply to the end of your hair to combat dryness and reduce friziness. Leave in your hair for 20 minute with a hot towel wrapped around it. Rinse and shampoo as normal...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Honeybees Can Recognise a Face

Monash University, 1/27/2009

New research from Monash University bee researcher Adrian Dyer could lead to improved artificial intelligence systems and computer programs for facial recognition.

Dr Dyer is one of Australia's leading bee experts and his latest research shows that honeybees can learn to recognise human faces even when seen from different viewpoints.

Dr Dyer said the research could be applied in the areas of new technology, particularly the development of imaging systems.

"What we have shown is that the bee brain, which contains less than 1 million neurons, is actually very good at learning to master complex tasks. Computer and imaging technology programmers who are working on solving complex visual recognition tasks using minimal hardware resources will find this research useful," Dr Dyer said.

"Most current artificial intelligence (AI) recognition systems perform poorly at reliably recognising faces from different viewpoints. However the bees have shown they can recognise novel views of rotated faces using a mechanism of interpolating or image averaging previously learnt views."

The findings show that despite the highly constrained neural resources of the insects (their brains are 0.01 per cent the size of the human brain) their ability has evolved so that they're able to process complex visual recognition tasks…

U.S. Firm Offers Beeswax-Based Skin Care Products

Clarksville Home to Honey-Based Products
News-Leader (USA), 1/26/2009

Q: I am trying to find out about a product for dry, chapped skin that's made from honey, and it's made in Missouri. I think it was invented by a nurse. It's supposed to be from the St. Louis area, but I can't find it. Please help. Thanks.

-Victoria L. Thornton, Springfield

A: That's the Bee Naturals company based in Clarksville about an hour north of St. Louis. Barbara Chappuis, R.N., developed skin-cream bars for her own use after having trouble with cracked, raw hands from using harmful substances in her hospital work environment.

The ingredients are all-natural and therapeutic and are very popular in winter months for customers including farmers and children. Chappuis' formula includes unbleached beeswax and oils from coconuts, castor beans, olives, wheat germ and herbs.

Products have expanded from the cream bars to lip balm, cuticle and nail oil and skin cleansers, plus a line for babies and another for men.

You can visit the original shop and factory in Clarksville and tour the facilities. What you'll see depends on what product is being made at the time, as there are various procedures. To find out details about hours and products, visit http://www.beenaturals.com/ or call 877-499-3897...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Honey Laundering: Tainted Product Still Slips Easily Into U.S.

By Andrew Schneider, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 1/25/2009

Concealing discoveries of contaminated imported honey is immoral, unethical and often illegal -- and it happens far too often, U.S. honey producers say.

"It doesn't take a wizard to determine whether there are bad things in the honey we handle, nor a hero to do what it takes to keep it from our food supply," said Mark Brady, a Texas beekeeper who sits on the National Honey Board.

"If we buy Chinese honey, as we do far too often, we know it may contain chloramphenicol or some other antibiotic that is illegal in any food product," said Brady, who produces about a million pounds of honey a year. "To find it and not report it is criminal."

Two-thirds of the honey Americans consume is imported and almost half of that, regardless of what's on the label, comes from China, the Seattle P-I reported last month.

The newspaper's five-month investigation into honey laundering -- the intentional mislabeling of the country of origin -- found that tons of Chinese honey coming into the U.S. is tainted with banned antibiotics.

But when the contamination is discovered by the industry through internal testing, insiders say, federal health or customs officials are almost never notified, and the honey ends up being dumped back on the market.

That practice is wrong, said Kenneth Haff, the newly elected president of American Honey Producers…

5 Medicinal Benefits of Bee Products

Bee Products are Generating a Lot of Buzz
By Adam Voiland, Chicago Daily Herald, 1/26/2009

U.S. News & World Report scoured the medical literature to find five situations in which today's best scientific evidence suggests that our six-legged, pollen-toting pals can help, and five for which the jury's still out.

Bee products can help if...

1. You have a burn. Seared your hand while baking? No worries. Of the many supposed medical benefits of honey, few have been studied as extensively as its soothing effect on burns. In fact, a review published in October in Cochrane Reviews synthesized data from multiple studies and concluded that honey reduces healing time more than conventional gauze and film dressings that are often used to treat moderate burns.

2. You have an infected foot or leg ulcer that's slow to heal. Nope, this doesn't mean that downing a teaspoon of honey will make the gaping ulcer on your leg magically disappear. In fact, treating an ulcer with honey doesn't involve eating even a drop of honey…

3. You have a cough. If you think over-the-counter cough medications actually help, think again. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has been questioning the value of these medicines, and the agency has warned that children under the age of 2 should never use them because of potential side effects.

What are parents to do when they've got a sneezing, sniffling, coughing kid on their hands? A spoonful of buckwheat honey might be a good place to start. Researchers at Penn State College of Medicine recently compared honey with a cough suppressant called dextromethorphan and found that honey worked better.

4. You have Fournier's gangrene. Fournier's gangrene, a frightening type of gangrene that mainly affects men, is caused by a bacterial infection that infiltrates the genital region. Though quite rare, the combination of virulent and aggressive microbes that cause the problem can result in organ failure and death. Thankfully, honey seems to help...

5. You're infected with MRSA. Methicillin-resistant Staph aureus has long been a threat in hospitals, and the antibiotic-resistant bacterium has recently emerged in places other than health care settings. Usually, MRSA bacteria infects only its victim's skin, which results in a reddish rash, but sometimes the colony penetrates farther into the body, where it can become fatal. The good news is that research shows Manuka honey is surprisingly adept at killing the bug.

The jury's still out if ...

1. You have multiple sclerosis. Boosters have long maintained that bee venom can help temper the ravages of multiple sclerosis, but evidence has always been in short supply. In 2005, researchers from the Netherlands attempted to get to the bottom of the issue by running a small placebo-controlled study of 26 patients. Their conclusion: Bee venom did not reduce disease activity, disability or fatigue and did not improve quality of life.

Other researchers from Georgetown University have found that taking bee venom is safe for people with multiple sclerosis, but say that larger studies are needed to know whether it offers any health benefit.

2. You have arthritis pain. Even for stoic types, the pain from this inflammatory disease can be excruciating. And since the widely used arthritis drug Vioxx tumbled off the market in 2004, many people have been forced to find new ways to control arthritic pain.

How about rolling up your sleeves and having scores of bees sting away, putting a surge of bee venom into your body? Some people actually do this, but you won't find many medical associations touting bee venom therapy just yet.

3. You have chronic sinusitis. Some 30 million to 40 million Americans have chronic sinusitis, an exasperating condition that leaves people with near-constant headaches, endlessly sniveling noses and yellowish discharge in the back of the throat.

In September, word emerged at the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation's annual meeting that honey is better at destroying the biofilms produced by the offending bacteria than traditional antibiotics. The next step: making sure these Petri dish findings apply inside the human body…

Sunday, January 25, 2009

New Method Established to Detect Chloramphenicol in Propolis

Analysis of Chloramphenicol in Propolis Extract by LC/MS/MS
Shokuhin Eiseigaku Zasshi, 2008;49(6):399-402

A quantitative analysis method using LC/MS/MS of chloramphenicol (CAP) in propolis extract (ethanol extract) has been established.

Extraction of CAP from propolis extract was performed by adding water, followed by salting-out with sodium chloride. Through this procedure, the wax components of propolis extract could be effectively removed...

When eight samples of propolis extract products on the market were analyzed using this method, CAP was not detected (N.D.) in any of the samples.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Review of Honey Dressings and Wound Care

Honey-Based Dressings and Wound Care: An Option for Care in the United States
J Wound Ostomy Continence Nurs, 2009 Jan-Feb;36(1):60-6.

Honey-based wound dressings have been used worldwide since ancient times. A honey product received US Federal Drug Administration approval in 2007, making this dressing an option for wound care.

Honey has been found to exert anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects without antibiotic resistance, promote moist wound healing, and facilitate debridement. However, it may cause a stinging pain. As is true of any wound dressing, its use must be carefully selected and monitored. Continued research is needed to add to its evidence base.

This article provides a summary of the current evidence base for the use of honey and a review of its therapeutic effects and discusses implications for WOC nursing practice.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Higher Honey Consumption Has Positive Health Effects

Honey for Nutrition and Health: A Review
Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Vol. 27, No. 6, 677-689 (2008)

Due to the variation of botanical origin honey differs in appearance, sensory perception and composition. The main nutritional and health relevant components are carbohydrates, mainly fructose and glucose but also about 25 different oligosaccharides.

Although honey is a high carbohydrate food, its glycemic index varies within a wide range from 32 to 85, depending on the botanical source. It contains small amounts of proteins, enzymes, amino acids, minerals, trace elements, vitamins, aroma compounds and polyphenols.

The review covers the composition, the nutritional contribution of its components, its physiological and nutritional effects. It shows that honey has a variety of positive nutritional and health effects, if consumed at higher doses of 50 to 80 g per intake.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Royal Jelly Boosts Honey’s Antimicrobial Action

Additive Activity of Royal Jelly and Honey Against Psuedomonas aeruginosa
Altern Med Rev, 2008 Dec; 13(4):331-334

As natural products garner attention in the medical field, the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria has confounded the current use of antibiotic therapy, leading to the re-examination of earlier remedies such as honey and royal jelly (RJ).

Four varieties of honey and one variety of freshly reaped RJ were used to evaluate the additive antimicrobial action against Pseudomonas aeruginosa (ATCC 27853).

Initially, honey and RJ were used separately to determine their minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) against the tested strain. Next, sub-MIC concentrations of honey and RJ were incorporated into media to determine the minimum additive inhibitory concentration.

When tested separately, the MIC of the four varieties of honey ranged from 12-18 percent (volume/volume; v/v), and that of RJ was 4 percent (v/v). When combined with RJ, each honey variety tested showed a greater than 90-percent drop in MIC using 3-percent (v/v) RJ, a 66.6-percent drop in MIC using 2-percent (v/v) RJ, and a 50-percent MIC drop with 1-percent (v/v) RJ.

The MIC of RJ dropped by 75 percent when used with the half concentration of honey that alone provides the MIC and by 50 percent when used with one-third the concentration of honey that alone provides the MIC.

A strong linear correlation exists between the MIC drop of each variety of honey and RJ.

With increasing interest in the use of alternative therapies and as the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria spreads, honey and RJ may receive renewed recognition as wound healers.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Royal Jelly, Estrogen Receptor Interaction Examined

A Theoretical Insight into the Interaction of Fatty Acids Involved in Royal Jelly with the Human Estrogen Receptor β
Bulletin of the Chemical Society of Japan, Vol. 81 (2008) , No. 10 pp.1258-1266

It has been well-known that fatty acids occurring in the royal jelly of honeybees are effective towards autonomic imbalance, perimenopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, and other conditions.

These pharmacological effects of royal jelly similar to those caused by the hormone estrogen are thought to appear due to the interaction of the fatty acids of royal jelly with an estrogen receptor inside the human body.

Although the structure of several major fatty acids present in royal jelly has been determined experimentally, no direct evidence of the interaction of these fatty acids with the estrogen receptor have been reported yet.

In this study, we therefore give an insight into the interaction of fatty acids with the human estrogen receptor β by quantum mechanical (QM), ONIOM, and molecular dynamics (MD) methods using a model active site.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

‘Dr. Sting’ Demonstrates Bee Venom Therapy

'Butterfly Guy' Flutters By Master Gardener Seminar
By T.C. Conner, The Write Gardener, 1/19/2009

Avid gardeners and other interested parties didn’t let a winter storm that dropped over seven inches of snow last Saturday stop them from attending the Mercer County Master Gardener’s ’Come Grow With Us!’ seminar. Guest speakers Rick Mikula, Jim Higgins, and Scott Weikert presented the day-long seminar at Mercer County Cooperative Extension, Leslie N. Firth Learning Center on Route 19, one mile north of Mercer. Approximately 55 brave travelers attended…

The next speaker was Jim Higgins from Hillsboro, Ohio. Higgins is a beekeeper and president of the Highland County Beekeepers Association. ’Dr. Sting,’ as Higgins is referred to by fellow beekeepers, administers bee stings from his home for various ailments including arthritis, hormonal problems, tennis elbow, bursitis, fibromyalgia, and carpal tunnel syndrome.

During his presentation, Higgins asked if anyone was experiencing sinus problems. ’How many of you in here have a sinus problem right now?’ Several hands were raised. ’If you will eat a teaspoon of honey, wax and all, check your watch, in 30 minutes or less your sinuses are going to open up and be fine for the day,’ Higgins said. This type of therapy is known as apitherapy and includes six products from bee hives: honey, pollen, propolis, royal jelly and bee venom.

Higgins astonished the audience by allowing himself to be stung on the wrist by a honeybee. His display of apitherapy products included a screened box of several honeybees for just this purpose. ’The stinger has three points to it, nestled together with a little cavity between the three points that becomes Mother Nature’s hypodermic needle,’ Higgins said. ’Two of those points have barbs at the sides, so when it hits you, one of these will seat under the skin and hold so that the other one can go in,’ Higgins explained.

He also pointed out that after stinging, the honeybee dies within 24 hours because it disembowels itself after depositing its stinger. The stinger has a bulbous sac loaded with venom, and the sac acts as a pumping unit for discharging venom.

Higgins likened this process to a computer system. ’Bees don’t have the nervous system that you and I have; it’s kind of like having computer chips hither and thither around the body that do their thing in their part of the body independent of the rest of the body.’…

Spanish Alternative Medicine Course to Include Apitherapy

From February 4 to April 2, 2009, the Department of Medicine, University of Alcalá (Madrid-Spain) and the Prince of Asturias University Hospital will conduct a Course on Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM), which will include Apitherapy.

While the course is for physicians, it is free and open to the public.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Synthetic Wound-Healing Honey Based on Hydrogen Peroxide Release

A patent has been published for a synthetic wound healing product that reportedly mimics honey’s slow release of hydrogen peroxide.

As reported December 13, 2008, in Apitherapy News: “Sligo Institute of Technology has just signed a licensing agreement with a leading American company following research it conducted into manuka honey -- believed to have unique healing powers.”

It was not revealed at that time what mechanism for healing would be used by the new product. With the publication of the patent, it is clear that the properties of the synthetic honey do not relate to manuka honey’s non-peroxidal component, also called the unique manuka factor (UMF).

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Propolis Recommended for Pet’s Dental Problem

By Dr. Michael Fox, United Feature Syndicate, 1/18/2009

DEAR DR. FOX: We have a 3-year-old Ragdoll cat, Gus, who is an extremely fussy eater. When we first got him, we fed him soft food and bit of dry/hard as a supplement. When so many cat foods were recalled, I tried making his food, but he wouldn't eat it.

His teeth are not healthy. Not long ago, our veterinarian had to pull four teeth and prescribed a special diet of dry food by Science Diet formulated for cats with bad teeth. Knowing what we know about nutrition for cats, we were uncomfortable feeding him only dry food, so we introduced him to Spot's Stew, and he is wild about it. We feed him the stew once in the morning and once in the afternoon. We do not give him the recommended amount for his size, but we do give him the prescribed dry food as a supplement. On average, he eats about a 1/4 cup of the prescribed food daily.

How can we to help him maintain the health of his teeth? We've tried many methods for brushing his teeth, but none have proven successful. -- R.G., Woodstock, Md.

DEAR R.G.: Dental problems are common in cats and can be linked with other health problems, including diabetes mellitus and underlying chronic viral infection.

I don't see how a hard/dry food can benefit a cat with bad teeth, gum disease and recent tooth extractions. High cereal content in the dry food could bring on diabetes, obesity and liver disease.

Add a few drops of cod-liver oil -- it has anti-inflammatory effects and will help the gums -- to his food. Try getting your cat used to having his teeth rubbed with a piece of gauze that has been dipped in a mixture of baking soda, salt and a few drops of oil of cloves or thyme and propolis (available in many health stores)…

Antimicrobial Activity of Propolis Extracts Compared

Antimicrobial Activity of Soft and Purified Propolis Extracts
Medicina (Kaunas), 2008; 44 (12): 977-983

Summary. Objective. To evaluate the antimicrobial activity of soft and purified propolis extracts.

Study object and methods. Antimicrobial activity of soft and purified propolis extracts was determined with reference cultures of Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25923, Enterococcus faecalis ATCC 29212, Escherichia coli ATCC 25922, Klebsiella pneumoniae ATCC 33499, Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853, Proteus mirabilis ATCC 12459, Bacillus subtilis ATCC 6633, Bacillus cereus ATCC 8035, and fungus Candida albicans ATCC 60193.

Microbiological tests were performed under aseptic conditions. Minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) – the highest dilution of preparation (the lowest concentration of preparation) that suppresses growth of reference microorganisms – was determined.

Results. …There is no statistically significant difference between antimicrobial effect of soft propolis extract and purified propolis extract on gram-positive bacteria, gram-negative bacteria, spore-forming bacteria, encapsulated bacteria, and Candida fungus.

Conclusions. Soft and purified propolis extracts possess antimicrobial activity. They could be recommended as natural preservatives in the manufacture of pharmaceutical products.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Honey May Play Cardioprotective Role

Anti Inflammatory Effect of Natural Honey on Bovine Thrombin-Induced Oxidative Burst in Phagocytes
Phytother Res, 2009 Jan 13

Thrombin, hyperglycemia and reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been discovered to play a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The aim of the study was to evaluate the direct effect of bovine thrombin (BTh) on ROS production by human neutrophils and rodent macrophages and to investigate the effect of honey on BTh-induced ROS production from phagocytes.

Professional phagocytes, i.e. neutrophils and macrophages, were stimulated by BTh and ROS production was measured in luminol/lucigenin enhanced chemiluminescence (CL) assays. In another experiment the effects of honey treatment on BTh-induced ROS production by phagocytes was tested using a CL assay.

The results indicate that BTh directly activates phagocytes. A significant generation of ROS was noted with the luminol/lucigenin enhanced chemiluminescence (CL) system.

Honey treatment of phagocytes activated by bovine thrombin showed effective suppression of oxidative respiratory burst monitored by the CL assay.

In conclusion, it can be assumed that this direct action of BTh on phagocytes causing ROS production might exaggerate the inflammatory response at the site of atheromatous plaques.

The suppressive activity of honey towards thrombin-induced ROS production by phagocytes could be beneficial in the interruption of the pathological progress of CVD and may play a cardioprotective role.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Bee Venom Mask Offers Alternative to Botox

Beauty Alternatives
Female First, 1/15/2009

It seems that people are willing to go to any length nowadays to look younger and like their favourite celebrities. With more people than ever heading under the knife, we have seeked out the latest alternatives to plastic surgery.

Here at FemaleFirst we think that no-one should be fooled by the glamorised and celebrity endorsed culture of cosmetic surgery. Plastic surgery is full of risks and even the simplest of procedures can go wrong. So, avoid the pain and price in the pursuit of a A-list body, with our tried and tested alternatives…

… we have an all-natural alternative to botox with the Bee Venom Mask by Heaven Skincare. The mask contains bee venom and manuka honey which gently firms, smoothes and plumps the skin. At just £55 it is a lot cheaper than a series of botox injections.

The mask uses only natural and organic ingredients, which are combined to work in synergy for an instant anti-ageing effect. Manuka Honey in the mask is renowned for its soothing and healing properties, it also contains Bee Venom which works to control the facial muscles for immediate lifting, tightening and firming. Just apply the mask daily and leave on for 20 minutes before washing off to get instant younger and smoother skin to rival Madonna.

Nigerian Honey Decreases Tumor Weight

Jungle Honey Enhances Immune Function and Antitumor Activity
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2009 Jan 12

Jungle honey (JH) is collected from timber and blossom by wild honey bees that live in the tropical forest of Nigeria. JH is used as a traditional medicine for colds, skin inflammation and burn wounds as well as general health care.

However, the effects of JH on immune functions are not clearly known. Therefore, we investigated the effects of JH on immune functions and antitumor activity in mice...

Antitumor activity was assessed by growth of Lewis Lung Carcinoma/2 (LL/2) cells. PC numbers were increased in JH-injected mice compared to control mice. In Dot Plot analysis by FACS, a new cell population appeared in JH-injected mice. The percent of Gr-1 surface antigen and the intensity of Gr-1 antigen expression of PC were increased in JH-injected mice. The new cell population was neutrophils. JH possessed chemotactic activity for neutrophils.

Tumor incidence and weight were decreased in JH-injected mice. The ratio of reactive oxygen species (ROS) producing cells was increased in JH-injected mice. The effective component in JH was fractionized by gel filtration using HPLC and had an approximate molecular weight (MW) of 261.

These results suggest that neutrophils induced by JH possess potent antitumor activity mediated by ROS and the effective immune component of JH is substrate of MW 261.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thai Firm Launches Royal Jelly Skin Care Line

Watsons’ ‘Be Gorgeous’ Skincare Nature’s Secret with Benefits of Royal Jelly
ThaiPR.net, 1/15/2009

Watsons Your Personal Store is offering a beauty secret of nature with its latest ‘Be Gorgeous’ skincare collection infused with benefits of natural Royal Jelly, acknowledged for its moisture preserving benefits and gentle nourishing qualities that result in a gorgeous skin glow.

The ‘Be Gorgeous’ line comprises eight different products for a complete skin pampering:

Be Gorgeous Shower Cream (at 99 Baht) Users will experience soft skin after cleansing it with the sweet-scented shower cream enriched with honey and natural royal jelly…

Watsons’ Be Gorgeous will be on the shelves at all Watsons outlets from 22 January 2009 onwards. More information, please visit http://www.watsons.co.th/

Bee Pollen Antioxidant Activity Not Associated with Phenolic Content

In Vitro Antioxidant Capacity of Honeybee-Collected Pollen of Selected Floral Origin Harvested from Romania
Food Chemistry, Article in Press

Total phenolic phytochemical concentration was measured in 12 honeybee-collected pollens of selected floral species as well as their antioxidant capacity…

A great variability regarding the correspondence between the antioxidant activity and the content of total polyphenols of honeybee-collected pollens with different botanical origin was found.

Antioxidant activities were different for each floral species and were not clearly associated to their total phenolic content.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Honey Yields Not Impacted by Bee Venom Collection

Effect of Venom Collection Using the Method of Coupled Electrical and Sound Stimulation on Honey Yield in Bee Colonies
Journal of Apicultural Science, Vol. 52, No. 2, 2008

Summary: This study was undertaken in 1998-2001 in the apiaries of the Apiculture Division, of the Research Institute of Pomology and Floriculture, in Puławy, Poland. The study was undertaken to identify whether honeybee venom collection by means of coupled electrical and sound stimulation, affected honey production in honeybee colonies.

The production of honey was compared between colonies subjected to venom collection and control colonies. Each group was made up of 10 honeybee colonies settled in storey hives. Venom was collected three times over the apiarian season: around the 15th of June, the 30th of June and the 15th of July.

The results obtained demonstrated that the mean yield of honey, obtained only from colonies in which venom was collected using the method of coupled electrical and sound stimulation, was not significantly different than the yield of honey recorded in control colonies.

Malta – The Land of Honey

Apiculture in Malta Still Busy as a Bee
By Paul Cachia, DI-VE, 1/14/2009

The Maltese honey bee, known by the scientific name of ‘Apis mellifera ruttneri’ is endemic to these islands alone and compared to the other species, it is less susceptible to the varroa, a deadly disease. It strongly defends its territory against wasps, mice and beetles.

Malta is also blessed by a variety of plant species and a large amount of wild thyme, a very popular plant with bees.

The honey season in Malta starts in early spring when the pollen is available to bees but unlike other countries it practically spans the whole year with the apiaries in Mellieha active until late December.

There are around 150 beekeepers registered with the apiculture centre. Most of them have only small holdings and keep 5 hives or less...

…Maltese honey known as the ‘Wild thyme honey’ is well-sought after, which is after all where the name Melita came from - the land of honey.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

What are the Health Benefits of Honey and Propolis?

The Good Doctor Fields Some Common Queries
By Ingrid Pincott, North Island MidWeek (Canada), 1/12/2009

Q. What are the benefits of honey?

Dr. P: Phytonutrients found both in honey and propolis have been shown to possess cancer-preventing and anti-tumor properties. These substances include caffeic acid methyl caffeate, phenylethyl caffeate, and phenylethyl dimethylcaffeate.

Researchers have discovered that these substances prevent colon cancer in animals by shutting down activity of two enzymes, phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C and lipoxygenase. When raw honey is extensively processed and heated, the benefits of these phytonutrients are largely eliminated.

Many people find it rather surprising that bacteria cannot grow in honey because all things being equal, bacteria loves sugar.

The unique chemical composition of low water content and relatively high acidic level in honey creates a low pH (3.2-4.5) environment that makes it very unfavourable for bacteria or other micro-organism to grow.

It also contains trace amounts of vitamins and minerals.

Brazilian Apitherapy Firm to Seek Halal Certification

Pharma Nectar, a Brazilian Company, Pitches Its Honey Overseas
By Geovana Pagel, Brazzil Magazine, 1/9/2009

Brazilian company Pharma Nectar exports propolis, honey and herbal extracts from Brazilian medicinal plants to more than 20 countries, mainly in Asia and Europe. They have a showroom in the city of Belo Horizonte, capital of the state of Minas Gerais, and a laboratory in the city of Caeté, in the interior of the state.

In order to ensure the brand's growth in the foreign market, the company invests in participation in international trade fairs such as Expo West, the leading exhibition of organic and natural products in the United States, which opens the trade fair season in the United States market.

The history of Pharma Nectar began in 1980 with the establishment of Apiário Néctar (Nectar Apiary). In 1990, with the foundation of Néctar Farmacêutica (Nectar Pharmaceutics), the company gained international reach, expanded its operations to include biotechnology, herbal medication and prescription pharmacy.

With foreign market expansion plans for 2009, the company invests in seeking new markets. According to company owner José Alexandre Abreu, the organization, which already has many Muslim customers in Malaysia, has decided to seek halal certification, which should be obtained still in the first half of 2009.

"We realized that we have many products that are fit for the Arab market. We are well attuned to the religious and cultural issues of the region, and have already developed products that are alcohol-free and contain no ingredients of animal origin," ensures Abreu…

Monday, January 12, 2009

Royal Jelly Enhances Healing of Perforated Eardrum

Effectiveness of Royal Jelly on Tympanic Membrane Perforations: An Experimental Study
J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg, 37(2):179-84

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the comparison of the efficacy of royal jelly in a guinea pig tympanic membrane perforation model with untreated and control groups.

Study Design: Prospective study using 16 adult guinea pigs.

Methods: Each animal underwent subtotal removal of the tympanic membrane in one ear. Animals were divided into two groups of eight animals each. Group A was treated with topical royal jelly, and group B was treated with saline. All opposite right ears were used as the control group. Examination was done by otoendoscopy on days 10, 12, and 14. The healing process was observed under the microscope and photographed for 3 months.

Results: There was no significant difference between group A and group B in the incidence of perforation closure. However, after 3 months, the mean thickness of the tympanic membranes was 0.11, 0.07, and 0.08 mm, respectively, in group A, group B, and the control. These results showed a statistically significant difference. Histologically, the tympanic membranes of group A showed marked fibroblastic orientation and well-organized connective tissue. Application of royal jelly improved the success rate of closure, as shown in the present study.

Conclusions: This is the first study to investigate the effectiveness of royal jelly in enhancing healing in tympanic membrane perforations. Our study suggests that royal jelly is effective in increasing healing of tympanic membrane perforations in guinea pigs.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Study: Bee Pollen Has Health Protective Potential, Antioxidant Activity

Antioxidant Effects of Flavonoid from Croatian Cystus incanus L. Rich Bee Pollen
Food Chem Toxicol, 2008 Dec 16

Oxidant/antioxidant status, estrogenic/anti-estrogenic activity and gene expression profile were studied in mice fed with Cystus incanus L. (Cistaceae) reach bee pollen from location in Central Croatia's Dalmatia coast and offshore islands.

Seven phenolic compounds (out of 13 tested) in bee pollen sample were detected by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis. Phenolics detected in C. incanus L. bee pollen belong to flavonol (pinocembrin), flavanols (quercetin, kaempferol, galangin, and isorhamnetin), flavones (chrysin) and phenylpropanoids (caffeic acid).

Bee pollen as a food supplement (100mg/kgbw mixed with commercial food pellets) compared to control (commercial food pellets) modulated antioxidant enzymes (AOE) in the mice liver, brain and lysate of erythrocytes and reduced hepatic lipid peroxidation (LPO).

Bee pollen induced 25% of anti-estrogenic properties while no estrogenic activity was found.

Differential gene expression profile analyses after bee pollen enriched diet identify underexpressed gene Hspa9a, Tnfsf6 (liver) and down-regulated gene expression of Casp 1 and Cc121c (brain) which are important in the apoptosis pathway and chemotaxis.

These results indicate that used bee pollen possess a noticable source of compounds with health protective potential and antioxidant activity.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Video: Hawaii Bees Face Mite Threat

Mite Poison Brings Honey Caution
By Rod Thompson, Star-Bulletin, 1/8/2009

Watch the video.

The state plan to control a mite infestation now includes killing every bee within five miles of Hilo harbor.

The mites are tiny, spiderlike parasites that infect honeybees.

Since the mites were first detected on the Big Island on Aug. 20, officials have made several unsuccessful attempts to eradicate them, said Lyle Wong, head of the state Plant Industry Division.

Following those failures, the department is now setting out 200 baiting stations with low concentrations of an insecticide called fipronil, he said.

Fipronil has been widely used since 1996 in many crop and noncrop applications, Wong said. To use it to kill infected bees, the Department of Agriculture had to declare a special 15-day "crisis exemption" from restrictions on fipronil by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Wong said.

If bees near the harbor are not killed, the parasitic mites could spread to the entire island and cause a crash in the wild bee population…

Propolis Collected at Different Times of Year Have Similar Antibacterial Activity

Brazilian Propolis: Seasonal Variation of the Prenylated p-Coumaric Acids and Antimicrobial Activity
Pharmaceutical Biology, Volume 46, Issue 12 December 2008 , pages 889 - 893

Brazilian green propolis, which is used in food and beverages to improve health and to prevent diseases, demostrates antioxidant, antimutagenic, and antimicrobial activities. Most biological activities are thought to be related to the high levels of drupanin, artepillin C, and baccharin, which are compounds also present in Baccharis dracunculifolia D.C. (Asteraceae).

Since propolis chemical composition depends on the region and the period of collection, as well as its plant origin, the effect of seasonal variation on the both content of prenylated p-coumaric acids and in vitro antimicrobial activity of Brazilian propolis from four different sites, was performed.

The results showed that MIC values ranged from 100 to 300 μ g/mL against both Staphylococcus aureus and Kocuria rhizophila, while none of the propolis samples was active against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, and Candida albicans.

HPLC analysis showed that the content of drupanin, artepillin C, and baccharin varied throughout the year, as well as among the different study sites. Also, it is suggested that Baccharis dracunculifolia is the main botanical source of Brazilian propolis in sites 1 and 2, while in sites 3 and 4, other plant species are also used by bees to produce propolis.

All the evaluated propolis samples exhibited similar antibacterial activity, but different contents of prenylated p-coumaric acids throughout the year.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Video: Doctors Use Honey to Save Man's Leg

video

Doctors at Manhasset Hospital Use Honey to Help Queens Man Avoid Leg Amputation
By Jonathan Starkey, Newsday (USA), 1/8/2009

A Little Neck man may owe his right leg to an unlikely ancient remedy: honey.

Treatment that was until only recently thought by many to be "barbaric," according to one nurse at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, saved Franklin Lloyd from surgery, and potentially from having to amputate a portion of his right leg to thwart infection.

"It was really a godsend," Lloyd, 68, a retired lawyer, said Thursday morning during a media briefing at the hospital.

Dr. Marcia Epstein, an infectious disease specialist at North Shore treating Lloyd, said that without the honey-based dressing, "It was possible that the leg would have been lost, very possible."

Lloyd and his wife, Sally, first noticed his right leg was swollen in mid-December 2007. He was diagnosed with a bacterial infection, cellulitis, in his calf. But doctors later found that Lloyd actually had a fungal infection caused by Cryptococcus yeast, Epstein said. Immune suppressants prescribed after a kidney transplant in the mid-1990s had left Lloyd vulnerable, Epstein said…

Last January, Lloyd's team began applying a dressing made of sterilized, potent honey called manuka taken from Australian and New Zealand beehives.

The honey softened the tissue, allowing for easier removal. Some of the tissue was simply rinsed off with a saline solution. The honey's antibacterial properties also helped fend off infection.

The Food and Drug Administration cleared the dressing as a treatment for wounds and burns in summer 2007, and Derma Sciences Inc., a Canadian company with offices in Princeton, N.J., began selling it under the name Medihoney that fall.

That's not to say that healing honey is new. Egyptians used honey more than 4,000 years ago to treat wounds. Although hospital officials said yesterday they don't recommend applying store-bought honey to wounds, Mary Brennan, a wound nurse who helped treat Lloyd, said it was common in the 1970s to use regular honey to treat pressure ulcers…

Canadian Officials Suspect Case of Renal Failure Related to Propolis Use

Propolis: Suspected Association with Renal Failure
Canadian Adverse Reaction Newsletter, Volume 19 - Issue 1 - January 2009

Propolis is a natural resinous product collected by bees that is used in the construction of hives. It is available in Canada as a single ingredient or in combination in many natural health products (NHPs). Propolis is used for the relief of various conditions, including bacterial, fungal and viral infections, inflammation and, topically, for skin and mouth lesions. In the April 2005 issue of the Canadian Adverse Reaction Newsletter, an article described adverse reactions (ARs) such as allergic reactions and skin or mucous membrane irritation suspected of being associated with bee products.

Health Canada received a report of a 3-year-old boy with a known history of gluten enteropathy in whom acute renal failure developed while he was taking propolis. The gluten enteropathy was stable with dietary restriction. The child received the homeopathic product containing propolis 2–3 times per week as needed as prophylaxis for infection. The exact form and dose of propolis used was not reported. The child was also taking other NHPs in a sporadic fashion; however, information on the dosage and frequency of exposure to these other products is unknown…

Propolis was stopped, and his creatinine level returned to normal. No information was provided on the child’s clinical status or need for hospital care. The cessation of propolis was the only reported form of treatment.

A case of acute renal failure requiring hemodialysis following the use of propolis was previously reported in the literature. This case involved 2 exposure periods resulting in positive dechallenge and rechallenge in a 59-year-old man with a history of cholangiocarcinoma who had self-medicated with a Brazilian variety of propolis.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Video: Doctor Develops Honey Cough Medication

Honey Don't Cough: Natural Alternative to Cough Medicine

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - …nearly 500 children in North America die every year because they are overdosed on cold medications.

That's why Dr. Chamberlain started researching natural remedies as an alternative for parents. "Buckwheat honey actually has more antioxidants properties. It has direct anti-microbial properties. You can take it and put it on bacteria and it has killed bacteria."

A 2007 Penn State study found Buckwheat honey was just as effective at treating symptoms as the main cough suppressant drug Dextromethorphan, but there are some drawbacks. The honey is as thick as molasses.

Dr. Chamberlain designed Honey Don't Cough in an easy-to-use packet. "The parent just holds it and slowly squeezes it out. It takes a kid about 5 -10 seconds to suck this out which actually gives it time to coat their throat."…

Apitherapy Products Could Help Alleviate Poverty

Bee Cultivation: A Good Job Option for Women
The New Nation (Bangladesh), 1/8/2009

Halima Begum of Tangail district was married off with a poor man of neigbouring Mymensingh district when she was only 13. Endured poverty in her father's house since her birth, Halima finds no change in her plight even after her marriage.

By the time they have got two daughters and their economic condition has worsened further. Then frustrated Halima has started thinking that now it is her turn to salvage their sinking family.

One day she came to know from one of her neighbours about bee cultivation. Later, she received training on it from Proshika, an NGO. Apart from her own capital of Tk 500, she took a loan of Tk 2,000 from Proshika to start bee cultivation. And that was the turning point. Soon she has overcome her economic hardship. Halima, in her late 20s, is now a happy woman…

BAA general secretary Abdul Alim Bhuiyan says four varieties of bee are available in Bangladesh. They are apis malifera, apis dorsata, apis serena and apis frolria. Of them, apis malifera and apis serena can be cultivated in boxes while the other two varieties are available in the natural environment…

Various flowers and fruits are available in Bangladesh due to geographical reasons. Bees collect honey from corn type flowers. The highest amount of honey is available from November to June. Mustard is the main source of honey. Besides, bees collect honey from litchi, sundari, keora, garan and different types of flowers…

Experts say honey is not only a good drink. It also resists different diseases. Besides, there are some important byproducts like bee poisons, royal jelly, pollen etc produced from bee cultivation. These byproducts are used in treatments of many serious diseases…

Apitherapy Lecture Jan. 10 in Pennsylvania

Master Gardeners to Cover ‘The 3 B’s’
The Herald (USA), 1/6/2009

Mercer County Master Gardeners are hosting “The Three B’s” from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Leslie N. Firth Learning Center, U.S. Route 19, Coolspring Township…

James Higgins will discuss, “Bees — Honey and More.” The beekeeper is president of the Highland County Beekeepers Association. He has trained bee venom therapists, teaches at the American Apitherapy Society’s annual school and has lectured in the United States, Canada and Cuba.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Bee Pollen Part of Diet Popular with Celebrities

US Weekly Names Tosca Reno’s Eat-Clean Diet as Top 5 Hollywood-favored

LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Eating Clean is becoming popular with Hollywood Celebrities, especially at this time of year when many red carpet events are right around the corner starting with the upcoming Golden Globe and SAG Awards shows.

US Weekly’s January 12th issue stated that Academy Award winners Nicole Kidman and Halle Berry are Clean-Eating fans of Celebrity Expert/Bestselling Author Tosca Reno’s Eat-Clean Diet.

The Eat-Clean principle is to eat 5-6 meals every 2-3 hours daily that combine lean protein and complex carbs at each meal (stabilizes blood sugar levels) with tons of water. It avoids all over-processed, refined foods, especially white flour and sugar. The Eat-Clean Diet incorporates 7 Super foods along with flaxseed, wheat germ and bee pollen that rev up your metabolism and give you endless energy…

Cancer Survivor Promotes Health Benefits of Honey

Cancer Survivor Toasts New Life with Sweet Biz
By Clem Richardson, New York Daily News, 1/5/2009

David Luks, owner of Honeydrop drinks, at the Wholefoods Market in Tribeca, which sells his product.

Two bouts of self-examination changed David Luks' life.

The second might not be bad for his wallet, either.

The first was physical. Early in 2006 a self-examination helped Luks, 34, learn that he had testicular cancer…

Luks was lucky. His cancer was in its earliest stage. The tumor was so small that doctors did not recommend chemotherapy or radiation treatments after his surgery.

But like any cancer survivor Luks must have regular medical exams to make sure there is no relapse. He also had to examine his lifestyle. With help from a community of doctors and nutritionists, Luks learned to live healthier.

"About eight months ago, one of my nutritionists gave me an article about honey," he said. Luks learned that honey contains antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and is a complex carbohydrate that can be a big part of a healthy life.

"I remembered when I used to run in Central Park the runners used to take a spoonful of honey before they ran and they had all this energy," he said.

Luks used to work for Pepsico, the giant soft drink bottler, so an idea came readily to his mind.

Luks and Skidmore College friend Steven Zimmerman, 32, founded Deluxe Honeydrop, a company that now produces four flavors of honey-infused water - Blueberries, Apples, Blood Oranges and Chamomile tea.

Launched last October at a Boston trade show, Deluxe Honeydrop is now available at all New York area Whole Foods markets...

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Honey Recommended for Allergies

Of Bees and Caterpillars
The New York Times, 1/5/2009

To the Editor:

As a beekeeper, I was drawn to “The Buzz of Bees, though Benign, Halts Caterpillars’ Munching” (Observatory, Dec. 30) and pleased to learn of another benefit of the remarkable honeybee. From there my eye descended to the item on “Tormenting Pollens.” There is an important connection. Honey is the perfect antidote to those pollens. In much of the world, it is understood that a teaspoon of local honey daily can immunize sufferers from the bothersome sneezing, runny nose and weeping eyes. It is yet another way in which the honeybee and her products are a boon to humans.

Christine Lehner
Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y.

Propolis Cuts Cold Sore Healing Time by Half

Ask the Experts: What’s the Alternative? Cold Sores
By Vicky Perks, Western Mail (UK), 1/5/2009

Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus which enters the body and travels to the top end of the nerves, where it lies dormant.

During this inactive state there is no sign of infection. It is only when the virus is woken up – or activated – that the cold sore forms…

Most conventional cold sore treatments are only effective at the tingling stage, before the blisters occur. Once the blister has reared its ugly head it can take up to 10 days for the cold sore to run its course.

However, clinical trials show some herbal remedies can be effective at every stage of a cold sore.

Research published in Phytomedicine 2000 shows that Bio-Propolis from Bioforce can heal cold sores in just over three days, even after blistering has occurred.

Derived from a beeswax extract collected from a specific variety of Canadian poplar trees, Bio-Propolis helps to prevent the cold sore virus from replicating and reduces pain.

It is rich in amino acids, trace elements and flavonoids, which together have an antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal effect. Indeed studies have shown that it can reduce healing time by up to 50%...

Monday, January 05, 2009

Video: Healing Wounds with Honey

video
Doctors are going back in time to treat wounds with something most people have in their kitchen cupboards.

New Manuka Honey Skin Care Line

Manuka Honey Handcreme & Gel from £12 (€13.35)
Independent (Ireland), 1/5/2009

For gentle, nourishing skin products, try this new apitherapy (treatment with honey) range.

And not just any honey either, it is certified UMF 16+ Active Manuka Honey, an ingredient with healing properties, including free radicals which help to fight the ageing process.

According to New Zealand professor Peter Molan, the antibacterial property helps improve skin texture and retain moisture and is of great benefit to psoriasis and eczema sufferers.

See http://www.simplymanuka.co.uk/ for more details…

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Video: Honey May Help Heal Burns

video

Honey may be an effective alternative treatment for burns.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Review: Australian Jarrah Bee Pollen from Vivapura

By Mike Adams, Natural News Network, 1/2/2009

Natural health and nutrition advocates already know the many benefits of bee pollen: It's a remarkable superfood that's loaded with enzymes, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and healing phytonutrients. (That's why bees use it for food, too.)

Among bee pollen products, it's difficult to know which ones are superior, so I asked the raw foods enthusiasts at the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center (http://www.treeoflife.nu/) who told me they used the Australian Jarrah Bee Pollen available from http://www.vivapura.net/

What's so special about this "Jarrah" variety of bee pollen? Jarrah honey is from Western Australia, and it is renowned for its ability to accelerate wound healing. It's likely similar to Manuka Honey, which has actually been approved by the U.S. FDA for use as a topical treatment for healing wounds and burns (http://www.naturalnews.com/023670.html).

Jarrah bee pollen, of course, is made from the same plants that Jarrah honey comes from, so it almost certainly has many of the same healing properties. Among raw foods enthusiasts, it is widely considered the very best bee pollen in the world…

Friday, January 02, 2009

Recipe for Honey Hair and Scalp Conditioner

Beauty Remedies from Kitchen, Garden
By Ronna Capili, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1/2/2009

Hair Conditioner

Mix 3 tbsp of honey with 1/3 cup olive oil. Heat in microwave, then work in and leave on hair for 30 minutes in a shower cap. Shampoo and rinse afterwards. Squeeze juice from half a lemon and mix with a mug of hot water as a final rinse for hair. This clears up buildup and residue on scalp and hair and controls grease…

Royal Jelly Component May Have Antihypertensive Activity

Expression of Apalbumin1 of Apis cerana cerana in the Larvae of Silkworm, Bombyx mori
J. Agric. Food Chem, 2008, 56 (20), pp 9464–9468

Royal jelly (RJ) is a thick, milky material produced by both the hypopharyngeal and the mandibular glands of nurse honeybees. The main proteins of RJ, named apalbumins or major royal jelly proteins (MRJPs), have multiple biological functions. Apalbumin1 is the most abundant glycoprotein of RJ.

In this study, Bacmid-apalbumin1 was constructed for Apis cerana cerana using the newly established Bac-to-Bac/BmNPV baculovirus expression system (BES)…

The peptide Ile-Phe was identified from trypsin production of rAccapalbumin1. Such a peptide has been reported to have an antihypertensive ability. Our results have therefore potential applications in biomedical research and open new perspectives for the study of apalbumins.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Fake Malaysian Medicinal Honey Exposed

Orang Asli Used To Sell Fake Honey
By Sakina Mohamed

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 31 (Bernama) -- Several Orang Asli have been unwittingly exploited by certain parties to sell a syrupy solution which is being passed off as honey at Orang Asli stalls at the Sungai Perak rest area.

Those visiting the stalls, located along the North-South Expressway, could be easily lured into buying the amber-coloured, bottled solution, thinking that it is genuine wild honey harvested by the Orang Asli.

A Universiti Malaya biochemist chanced upon the scam after testing samples of the honey from the stalls.

Prof Kamaruddin Mohd Yusoff, who is from the Faculty of Medicine and specialises in the use of honey, said he bought the syrup intending to analyse the properties of wild honey harvested by the Orang Asli…

"People buy this honey thinking it is more potent than those in the market when it's not, and they may need it for medical use.

"There may also be foreign tourists who have bought this "honey", thinking it is pure Malaysian wild honey, and it would be very bad for Malaysia's image if by any chance they discover that they have been duped," he said…

Chinese Honey Scam Targets Australia

Stung by Honey-Launder Scam
Weekly Times Now (Australia), 1/1/2009

Australia has been caught up in an international "honey laundering" scam in which Chinese honey is disguised and sold as the product of another country.

The illegal scheme follows the collapse of bee colonies in the US and Europe, creating a shortage of honey and the bees necessary to pollinate crops, The Times and The Australian report

In the scam, drums of honey are shipped from China, usually to a distributor outside the country, who then repackages and re-exports it. In one case, drums of Chinese honey were marked "Polish Light Amber Honey"…

Buckwheat, Blueberry Honeys Most Active Against Wound Bacteria

Evaluation of Efficacy of Canadian Honeys Against Wound-Infecting Bacteria in vitro

[Note: The results of this study were presented at the recent convention of the Ontario Beekeepers’ Association in Niagara Falls, Canada.]

Authors: Katrina Brudzynski, Robert Lanningan
Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada, London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada

Honeys possessing antibacterial activity have been demonstrated to be useful as an adjunct topical treatment of infected wounds and burns. Canadian honeys have been shown to posses antibacterial activity against two standard bacterial species, Gram-negative Escherichia coli (ATCC 14948) and Gram-positive Bacillus subtilis (ATCC 6633), however their activity against wound-infecting bacteria have not been adequately investigated yet.

Purpose: To evaluate the susceptibility of seven clinical isolates from infected wounds to Canadian honeys in vitro.

Methodology: The isolates included four different strains of Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), two strains of Vancomycin resistant Enterococcus faecium and Escherichia coli. A broth microdilution method was employed to establish the MIC 90 for each isolate against seven honeys derived from different plant sources. Isolates were identified to genus and species and their susceptibility to antibiotics was confirmed using an automated system (Vitek R, Biomérieux R). The presence of the Mec A gene, Nuc gene and Van A and B genes were confirmed by polymerase chain reaction.

Results: The antibacterial assays showed that all bacterial isolates tested were susceptible to honey action. The most susceptible to honeys were two strains of MRSA (MRSA #3 and #5), the least susceptible was E. coli from wound. The antibacterial potency of honeys against clinical isolates depended on their plant origin, with the monofloral honeys (buckwheat and blueberry) reaching MIC90 values of 6.25 % (v/v) to 12.5% (v/v).

Conclusions: Canadian honeys showed efficacy against both the standard bacterial species as well as the antibiotic-resistant clinical isolates from wounds. Therefore, the mechanism of honey action did not discriminate against susceptible versus resistant bacterial species. Buckwheat and blueberry honeys were consistently the most active honeys suggesting that the phytochemical compound(s) might be responsible for the activity. These results strongly suggest that some monofloral Canadian honeys are promising antimicrobial agents in treatment of infected wounds including those infected with MRSA and VRE.