By Laura Gasser, PhD, Natural Reader, 7/8/2010
Ouch! That stings like a bee. Go ahead and sting me. I want you to. Bee venom has been promoted for many years as an analgesic for arthritis sufferers “Bee therapy” or Apitherapy (from the Latin apis which means bee) is the medicinal use of products made by honeybees.
Some of the conditions treated (not in any special order) are: multiple sclerosis, arthritis, wounds, pain, gout, shingles, burns, tendonitis, and infections . We know from ancient rock art of early hunter-gatherers honeybee therapy has existed for thousands of years and depicts the honeybee as a source of natural medicine.
Today, growing scientific evidence suggests that various bee products promote healing by improving circulation, decreasing inflammation, and stimulating a healthy immune response. In animal studies conducted recently, doctors in South Korea found that melittin, the principal peptide in bee venom, blocks the expression of inflammatory genes that can cause painful tissue swelling in rheumatoid arthritis patients. It is said to be 100 times stronger than hydrocortisone. Although Bee venom therapy has a risk of an anaphylatic reaction, risks of bee-ing stung far outweighs the possible side effects for many people...