Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Medicinal Honey Researcher Presents Findings at Apimondia

A Honey of a Cure Takes the Sting Out
By Chee Chee Leung, The Age (Australia), 9/11/2007

It's not just great on toast. A dollop of honey can kill off germs that cause infections, and may even help to ward off pimples.

That's according to University of Sydney microbiologist Shona Blair, who has been investigating the medicinal use of the sticky sweetener for the past decade.

Her laboratory work has shown that honey — even at concentrations of just 5 per cent — is effective at killing off golden staph, including the so-called "superbug" varieties.

"With some strains that are floating around in hospitals, they are resistant to every single drug we've got," she said. "This is one of the big roles that honey can play … it's just as effective against superbugs as it is against ordinary germs."

Dr Blair and colleagues have also found honey kills off bacteria that cause tetanus, wound botulism and scar-forming acne.

"For acne or sunburn or nappy rash, you can't walk around covered in honey all day, but you can mix one-third honey in with two-thirds base cream, like moisturiser." For an open wound, she says, the best medicine is a daub of pure honey…

Dr Blair will present her research at an international beekeeping conference in Melbourne this week…

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