Sunday, August 31, 2008

Does Bee Pollen Help You Lose Weight?

Healthy Recipes and More, 8/27/2008

As most of us search for the perfect diet, you may be surprised to learn that bee pollen and weight loss have been linked.

Research has found that bee pollen increases the metabolism, thereby speeding up the rate at which calories are burned. In fact, it is thought that pollen from the honeybee is even more potent as a weight loss alternative.

The pollen itself is low in calories, and it contains a substance called lecithin which allows fat to dissolve more readily in the body. In addition, the effect bee pollen has on cholesterol is positive, and can decrease cardiovascular disease as a result.

Another reason why bee pollen is so effective in losing weight is that it suppresses the appetite. Once you have a regular meal, you feel sated and do not require a second portion or snacks later on…

Bee pollen is also known as an energizer and has a domino effect on the body. The more energized you are, the more you will engage in physical activity, which will result in the loss of more weight…

Bee pollen is available in capsule form and can be taken in conjunction with a weight loss program. However, it should be stressed again to consult with your doctor before beginning any weight loss program, as well as ascertain if you are allergic to the pollen itself…

Under-Tongue Therapy May Ease Bee-Sting Allergy

By Karla Gale, 8/28/2008

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - For people who are strongly allergic to bee venom, desensitization using sublingual (i.e., under-the-tongue) immunotherapy may be a safer than injection immunotherapy, according to a proof-of-concept clinical trial conducted in Italy.

"Our research opens a new possible application of sublingual immunotherapy, which was never proposed for hymenoptera allergy," Dr. Giovanni Passalacqua told Reuters Health.

The standard way to desensitize patients with bee sting allergy is to administer small, increasing doses of venom by subcutaneous injections. However, there is a "particular risk of systemic/severe reactions" with this approach, the research team notes in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

On the other hand, they say, "systemic side effects are rare, severe adverse events are exceptional, and the common local side effects are mild and self-limiting" with sublingual immunotherapy, or SLIT.

To evaluate SLIT's suitability for hymenoptera allergy, Passalacqua, at the University of Genoa, and his associates conducted a trial involving patients who had experienced large local reactions -- swellings of 10 centimeters or more lasting more than 24 hours -- to bee stings…

New Treatment for Bee Sting Allergy Tested

Sublingual Immunotherapy for Large Local Reactions Caused by Honeybee Sting: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial
The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Volume 122, Issue 1, Pages 44-48 (July 2008)

Background: Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) proved effective and safe in respiratory allergy, and thus its use in hymenoptera allergy can be hypothesized.

Objective: We sought to assess, in a proof-of-concept study, whether SLIT might potentially be beneficial in hymenoptera allergy. The sting challenge in large local reactions (LLRs) was used to test this hypothesis...

Conclusion: Honeybee SLIT significantly reduced the extent of LLRs, and its safety profile was good. Although LLRs are not an indication for immunotherapy, this proof-of-concept study suggests that SLIT in hymenoptera allergy deserves further investigation. Trials involving systemic reactions and dose-ranging studies are needed.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Apitherapy Popular in Latvia

A Day in the Life of a Latvian Beekeeper
By Monika Hanley, Baltic Times, 8/27/2008

Even people who don’t insects like this one. The honey bee has had a symbiotic relationship with man for thousands of years but for Baltic people it’s very special. People like to make their own honey. Almost everybody who has lived in the region a while knows someone who keeps bees…

Alvis Gailis has been working with bees for over 20 years. “The process is really simple. You take the rack from the hive, check to see if the comb is capped, and if it is, then it’s ready,” he says.

He warms up a flat knife and cuts off the thin layer of wax capping that seals the honey in. He pops some in his mouth.

“This has many minerals and contains high amount of propolis. You chew it and it cleans out your mouth,” he says. Propolis is a waxy material that bees use as cement for repairs and maintenance on the hive.

This piece of folk medicine is taken seriously throughout Europe. Colgate even makes a propolis toothpaste.

Beekeepers in Latvia use nearly every part of the hive, including honey, propolis, wax, royal jelly and ambrosia, or bee bread. “Bees are the greatest creatures. Everything they produce is important,” says Alvis’ wife Jana…

Indeed, the uses of honey go far beyond the hive and the beekeeper. Beekeeping in Latvia has been documented since the ninth century and has been a sacred thing since the beginning. Many folk songs and sayings revolve around beekeeping and every Latvian, no matter how old, keeps the tradition alive and knows exactly which type of honey or bee byproduct is good for which ailment…

See: Natural Healers Sweet on Health Benefits of Honey

Manuka Honey Increases Wound Healing, Lowers Incidence of Infection

Manuka Honey vs. Hydrogel – A Prospective, Open Label, Multicentre, Randomised Controlled Trial to Compare Desloughing Efficacy and Healing Outcomes in Venous Ulcers
Journal of Clinical Nursing, Published Online: 25 Aug 2008

Objective. Comparison of desloughing efficacy after four weeks and healing outcomes after 12 weeks in sloughy venous leg ulcers treated with Manuka honey (Woundcare 18+) vs. standard hydrogel therapy (IntraSite Gel).

Background. Expert opinion suggests that Manuka honey is effective as a desloughing agent but clinical evidence in the form of a randomised controlled trial is not available. There is a paucity of research which uses Manuka honey in venous ulcers…

Conclusion. The WoundCare 18+ group had increased incidence of healing, effective desloughing and a lower incidence of infection than the control. Manuka honey has therapeutic value and further research is required to examine its use in other wound aetiologies.

Relevance to clinical practice. This study confirms that Manuka honey may be considered by clinicians for use in sloughy venous ulcers. Additionally, effective desloughing significantly improves healing outcomes.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Honey Popular in Traditional Chinese Medicine

A Spoonful of Honey Can Work Wonders
China View, 8/26/2008

BEIJING, Aug. 26 -- It's one of nature's healthiest foods and a favorite in traditional Chinese medicine, writes Zhang Qian

For many Chinese people, it's become a habit to add honey to milk, spread it on bread, or just simply stir some into a cup of warm water for breakfast every morning.

It's not just for the sweet taste but more for its rich nutrition and special function in traditional Chinese medicine, such as dispelling toxins and pathogenic heat, relieving pain and nourishing yin (cold) energy.

Honey, composed of various micro-elements such as vitamins, iron, calcium and copper as well as various enzymes, is a great nutritious supplement. And with about 80 percent of it easily assimilated glucose and fructose, honey is suitable for almost everyone, especially for elderly people with a weak digestive system.

Apart from its widely recognized nutritional value, honey is also Chinese people's favorite as a "neutral" food with medicinal properties. In the "Compendium of Materia Medica," the TCM classic by pharmacist Li Shizhen in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), honey can help dispel pathogenic heat, clear away toxins, relieve pain and combat dehydration.

Eating honey often can help nourish yin energy and strengthen the spleen, resulted in clear sight and rosy cheeks. Have honey every morning can help prevent constipation and it is also a good choice for those who suffer chronic coughing…

Apitherapy Featured at Apicultural Conference in China

What: 9th Asian Apicultural Association Conference
When: 1st to 4th November 2008 in Hangzhou, China
Sponsor: Apicultural Science Association of China

Workshops on apitherapy, propolis, Asian bee diversity, and bee products safety.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Video: Why is Manuka Honey Better Than Chemical Alternatives?

Natural Healing

Honey is a natural product, which is good for both patients and nurses.

Why is Manuka honey better than chemical alternatives? What do nurses like about using Manuka honey wound dressings?

Brett Hewlett (Comvita): I think the natural sourcing has a lot of merit, a lot of credibility. Using natural products in the woundcare space is very important for a lot of clinicians because you have much lower risk of toxicology and other side effects.

If you compared this to a pharmaceutically -derived drug or an ointment or something that was being developed and put into a wound dressing, it would take a lot of trials and a lot of clinical evidence to prove that it’s not toxic to end consumers.

Julie Betts (Health Waikato): The big advantages are that you can apply it easily to a wound, and you don’t have to guess how much honey to use so the whole dressing is impregnated with honey…

New Zealand Firm Launches Honey-Based Antibacterial Patch

Honey of an Idea for Treating Wounds
By Nikki Preston, Waikato Times (New Zealand), 2/27/2008

Sugar may be a diabetic's worst enemy but honey could be their best friend, thanks to a manuka-based antibacterial patch launched in New Zealand this month.

Bay of Plenty-based honey company Comvita has spent five years developing the dressing, which contains manuka honey gelled with sodium alginate an ingredient extracted from seaweed, after buying the patent off Waikato University in 2003. The patch was developed the Honey Research Unit at Waikato University…

Peter Molan, who leads the Honey Research Unit at Waikato University, said the patch could be used to heal chronic wounds such as foot ulcers and difficult to heal wounds caused by Type II diabetes. He has also developed a rating system that shows how manuka agents are effective antibacterial substances…

See Also: Dress Your Wound with Honey and Seaweed (The Economic Times, India)

Researchers Turn Honey Into Antiseptic (University of Waikato)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Local Raw Honey Recommended for Allergies

4 Ways to Treat Allergies Using a Natural Approach
By Shari Rudavsky, The Indianapolis Star (USA) , 8/26/2008

…Allergy shots may help, but if you prefer a natural approach, you can follow these tips from Chinese medicine expert Maoshing Ni, a California practitioner and author of "Secrets of Self-Healing."…

Sweet relief: Another way to boost your immunity, Ni says, is to eat locally produced, unfiltered, unprocessed honey or bee pollen (pictured). It's important that the honey or pollen come from a local farm since the bees will have been exposed to the same pollen that bothers you, he says.

Start with a small amount, like a pinch, and slowly work your way up to a heaping teaspoon daily, Ni suggests…

German Coalition Sues Bayer Over Pesticide Honey Bee Deaths

Freiburg, Germany, August 25, 2008 (ENS) - The German organization Coalition against Bayer Dangers today brought legal action against Werner Wenning, chairman of the Bayer AG Board of Management, by filing a charge against him with the public prosecutor in Freiburg.

The group accuses Bayer CropScience of "marketing dangerous pesticides and thereby accepting the mass death of bees all over the world."

The coalition filed the charge in cooperation with German beekeepers who claim they lost thousands of hives after poisoning by the Bayer pesticide clothianidin in May…

UAE Infant Botulism Case Not Caused By Honey

Infant Botulism Type Ba: First Culture-Confirmed Case in the United Arab Emirates
Pediatric Neurology, Volume 39, Issue 3, September 2008, Pages 204-206

We report on a 3-month-old girl with culture-confirmed infant botulism caused by a rare double toxin-producing Clostridium botulinum type Ba. This case was not related to honey-feeding. The clinical course was prolonged, with minimal spontaneous improvement at onset, and a period of fluctuating motor weakness and nasogastric feeding dependence afterward. Neurophysiologic studies produced normal results. Human botulism immune globulin was administered empirically on day 23 of presentation, with rapid full recovery.

This case highlights the importance of pursuing diagnoses of infant botulism despite normal results of neurophysiologic testing and no history of honey-feeding. Our case also demonstrates a favorable response to human botulism immune globulin, despite the relatively late treatment.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Kenyan Beekeepers Produce Honey, Royal Jelly, Bee Venom

Tired of Rustling, Herders Turn to Beekeeping
By Ekwam Nabos, The Standard (Kenya), 8/25/2008

Cattle rustlers may not fear the guns of home guards who try to repel them, but they may be wary of bee stings.

That could be the wisdom behind a new project that strives to convert pastoralists in Samburu District to beekeepers.

Every year, lives are lost in cattle rustling attacks and hundreds of livestock stolen, leaving a region frustrated and fatigued by survival tactics.

But now, deep in the scrublands of Samburu, residents are slowly exploring bee-keeping as an alternative way of livelihood…

Since many locals are nomadic pastoralists, beekeepers in the semi arid area face the challenge of moving with their hives when they relocate in search of pasture.

"They put their hives on their donkeys and move with them to new destinations. But when they harvest their honey they bring it to the refinery," the manager says.

At the refinery pure honey, royal jelly, bee venom, and bee wax are produced using scientific methods…

Propolis Accelerated Healing Following Colon Surgery

Ultrastructural View of Colon Anastomosis Under Propolis Effect By Transmission Electron Microscopy
World J Gastroenterol, 2008 August;14(30):4763-4770

AIM: To evaluate the effect of propolis administration on the healing of colon anastomosis with light and transmission electron microscopes...

RESULTS: The colonic bursting pressures of the propolis group were statistically significantly better than the control group. Ultrastructural histopathological analysis of the colon anastomosis revealed that propolis accelerated the phases of the healing process and stimulated mature granulation tissue formation and collagen synthesis of fibroblasts.

CONCLUSION: Bursting pressure measurements and ultra structural histopathological evaluation showed that administration of propolis accelerated the healing of colon anastomosis following surgical excision.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Video: Demonstration of Bee Venom Therapy for Arthritis

Video: Varroa Mites Found on Hawaiian ‘Big Island’

Varroa Bee Mites Spread to Hilo
By Brianne Randle, KHON2 (USA), 8/23/2008

Manoa Beekeeper Michael Kliks first spotted this tiny mite in April of '07.

"I called Department of Agriculture within five minutes, and they were at my house within fifteen minutes, we all understood what we had on our hands."

The "Varroa Destructor" - a bee mite that can kill a 60-thousand bee colony in a matter of weeks.

"They transmit viruses they weaken the hive by sucking the blood," says Kliks.

For the last seventeen months the mites were found to have spread from Ewa to Mililani to Waimanalo...that is until yesterday.

"Now we're eighteen months into it, and it's happened."

The Department of Agriculture discovered four Varroa mites in a bee swarm trap near Hilo harbor.

"Now it's on the Big Island, and that's a disaster for agriculture," says Kliks. "Clearly the Department of Agriculture did not even attempt to contain it to the island of Oahu."…

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Honey Recommended for Skin Care

Enhance Your Beauty With Honey?
By Elise Minton and Paige Herman, ABC15 (USA), 8/22/2008

Honey has become a staple ingredient in some of today's most sought-after beauty products -- and for good reason.

Besides its deliciously sweet scent, this natural moisturizer is hailed for its wide variety of therapeutic properties, such as the ability to keep skin hydrated and moist, as well as the power to fight against the signs of aging.

Plus, honey is an anti-irritant, so it is safe to use on even the most sensitive skin.

Benefits of honey

Derived from the hives of honeybees, honey is a natural humectant, meaning it attracts and retains moisture. Honey contains essential vitamins such as B5 and panothenic acid. It's also full of minerals like zinc and magnesium, which increase the skin's moisture retention. And it improves cell production and scalp circulation. Honey also contains loads of enzymes and amino acids, making it a powerful antibacterial ingredient that is excellent for treating acne, as well as reducing redness and inflammation. Rich in antioxidants, honey also helps regenerate damaged tissue, deflect free radicals and improve skin tone and elasticity. To reap the full benefits, look for dark-colored honey, which contains more antioxidants than light-colored versions…

New Honey-Based Sports Energy Gel

GloryBee Liquid Gold Honey-Based Gel
VeloNews, 8/22/2008

GloryBee Foods' Liquid Gold is an organic honey-based sports energy gel. The Eugene, Oregon-based company says that honey contains a mix of carbohydrates that help prevent sugar spikes.

Liquid Gold also contains potassium from blackstrap molasses and sodium from sun-dried sea salt. The gel comes in five flavors, which are extracted from organic essential oils — citrus, strawberry, mint, chocolate mint and natural…

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Video: Can Honey Help Cure Allergies?

Can Honey Help Cure Some of Your Allergies?, 8/12/2008

The sniffling and sneezing season is nearly done, and if it's kept you up at night with a stuffy nose, there's hope for next year. A new, non-invasive, chemical-free allergy treatment may already be on your pantry shelves.

It's local honey and it has advocates 'buzzing' about the purported health effects.

"My summer time was spent sneezing and watery eyes and I never went anywhere without a package of Kleenex," describes Annie VanElten.

But after a few years of eating the sweet stuff before those irritants normally act up, she now spends her springs sneeze-free.

"It's nice to know that you can actually ward them off with something natural," she beams.

The working theory is that by eating local honey produced near where you live, you're ingesting the same allergens that trouble you come April. And it's best if the honey is as unadulterated as possible, so you get a lot of the allegedly immune-boosting pollen…

Friday, August 22, 2008

Honey Recommended for Allergies, Skin Care, Cuts, Burns, Improved Eyesight

Benefits of Honey Intake
The New Nation (Bangladesh), 8/22/2008

…Honey is composed of sugars like glucose and fructose and minerals like magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium chlorine, sulphur, iron and phosphate. It contains vitamins B1, B2, C, B6, B5 and B3 all of which change according to the qualities of the nectar and pollen. Besides the above, copper, iodine, and zinc exist in it in small quantities. Several kinds of hormones are also present in it.

Approximately one half of the human diet is derived directly or indirectly from crops pollinated by bees. Today honeybees are an essential part of a healthy agriculture economy. If you have allergies, honey can be beneficial. If you eat honey that is local to your area, it may prevent your seasonal allergies. Bees use the pollen from local plants and eventually it ends up in your honey.

Honey may also be good for your skin. It has the ability to attract water. You can use honey instead of alpha hydroxy masks because of its high content of the acid. It is also safe for sensitive skin…

There is evidence that honey diluted in water will help with your stomach-aches and dehydration.

Germ-Fighting Properties

Do you have a cut? Honey is a natural antiseptic. Medical journals cite more than 600 cases in which honey was employed to treat wounds. By applying honey to your wounds, you prevent infections. Honey contains antimicrobial agents, which prevents infections by killing the bacteria in and around your wounds. When using honey it may help to heat it up before putting it on your wound (caution test the heat before you place it on the wound).Many types of bacteria can't survive in honey, so wounds heal, swelling eases, and tissue can grow back.

Honey may also be effective in the treatment of your ulcers. In Europe, honey has been used internally to help cure ulcers, particularly stomach ulcers.

Burns, too, heal better with honey, studies show. The advantage of honey is that it not only prevents infections from occurring, it actually accelerates skin healing.. Since the sugar in honey absorbs water it helps to trap some of the moisture so that the bacteria and other microbes can't grow as easily as in other food…

To improve eyesight, one should mix two teaspoons of honey with carrot juice and consume regularly.

According to research conducted by Madeep Kaur, of Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Samrala in Punjab, India, there are plenty of home remedies from honey. Improvement of the eyesight is only one such cure.

Those suffering from cold, cough, and chest congestion can benefit from two teaspoons of honey with equal quantity of ginger juice consumed frequently.

According to Madeep Kaur's research paper, one spoon of fresh honey mixed with the juice of half a lemon in a glass of lukewarm water taken first thing in the morning is very effective for constipation, hyperacidity, and obesity.

Regular use of two teaspoons of honey mixed with one teaspoon of garlic juice helps control blood pressure.

A mixture of honey, ginger juice, and black pepper powder in equal quantities when consumed thrice daily helps relieve symptoms of asthma…

Propolis Flavonoid Has Neuroprotective Effect

Pinocembrin Prevents Glutamate-Induced Apoptosis in SH-SY5Y Neuronal Cells Via Decrease of bax/bcl-2 Ratio
European Journal of Pharmacology, Volume 591, Issues 1-3, 4 September 2008, Pages 73-79

Abstract: Pinocembrin is the most abundant flavonoids in propolis, and has been proven to have antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory property. To assess the protective effects of pinocembrin on neurons, SH-SY5Y neuronal cells were pretreated with pinocembrin for 2 h followed by co-treatment with glutamate (2 mM) for 12 h…

Treatment with pinocembrin (10− 5, 10− 6, 10− 7 mol/l) increased cell viability dose-dependently, inhibited LDH release and attenuated apoptosis. Intracellular free [Ca2+] was increased after glutamate exposure, and this increase was attenuated in cells treated with pinocembrin. bax mRNA expression increased remarkably following glutamate exposure and pinocembrin treatment manifested a reduction effect. bcl-2 mRNA expression changes were not detected in groups with or without pinocembrin. Western blotting results indicated that pinocembrin treatment reduced the expression of Bax and had no effect on Bcl-2, thus decreased the Bax–Bcl-2 ratio, which is in consistent with the gene expression result. Pinocembrin could also down-regulate the expression of p53 protein, and inhibit the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria to cytosol.

Thus we conclude that pinocembrin exerts its neuroprotective effects in glutamate injury model partly by inhibiting p53 expression, thus Bax–Bcl-2 ratio, and the release of cytochrome c.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Honey Bee Could Hold Key to Parkinsons, Alzheimers

Bees Spark Brain Research Buzz
The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia), 8/21/2008

Ever wondered what goes on inside a bee's brain?

Well, the buzz is some Queensland scientists are going to try to find out. Because they believe the honeybee could hold secrets to treating diseases like Parkinsons, Alzheimers, stroke and depression.

The world's largest indoor, climate-controlled insect flight-testing facility was today opened at the University of Queensland to unlock the secrets of one of the tiniest brains in nature.

They know already that it has many of the characteristics of human grey matter.

The $2.5 million All Weather Bee Flight Facility, housed at the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI), will allow scientists to study the behaviour, brain function and brain development of the bee…

South African Women Beekeepers Produce Apitherapy Products

Honey Organisation‘s Launch Reason Enough to Wax Lyrical
By Dieketseng Maleke, The Herald (South Africa), 8/20/2008

The Eastern Cape branch of the first black-led honey producers‘ organisation in South Africa has been launched in Frankfurt village near Bhisho.

Agriculture department spokesman Thozi Manyisana said: “The industry was not open to previously disadvantaged communities, but now the farmers have organised themselves and made strides in entering the market.”

Manyisana said there were 50 beekeeping farmers in the Eastern Cape and the launch would take place on the site of a project where there were more than 200 beehives.

“People in some projects are not just selling the honey – they also use the wax to make candles, soaps, floor polishes and lip balms.”

Manyisana said in another project, in Lusikisiki, women bee farmers were producing medicines out of the pollen which helped stomach aches, propolis which helped in curing open wounds and “royal jelly” which boosted the immune system...

Bee Pollen Alleviates Systemic Toxicity

Evaluation of Protective Effect of Bee Pollen Against Propoxur Toxicity in Rat
Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 2008 Aug 14

In this study, 28 Wistar female rats (200-250g) were used and divided into four equal groups. Group 1 was allocated as the control group. Groups 2-4 were administered 100mg/kg/bw/day bee pollen, 20mg/kg/bw/day propoxur, and 100mg/kg/bw/day bee pollen plus 20mg/kg/bw/day propoxur by gavage for 14 days, respectively.

At the end of the 14th day, blood and tissues (the liver, kidney, brain, and heart) were collected from all animals. Oxidative stress markers (MDA, CAT, SOD, GSH-Px) and some other biochemical parameters (total protein, albumin, glucose, cholesterol, triglyceride, BUN, creatinine, uric acid, magnesium, sodium, potassium, chloride, total bilirubin, GGT, LDH, AST, ALT, and ALP) were analyzed.

According to the data obtained, propoxur was determined to lead to negative changes in most of the biochemical parameters investigated and the administration of bee pollen was determined to alleviate these effects.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Group Files Suit for EPA Data on Honey Bees, Pesticide

Mysterious Honey Bee Disorder Buzzes into Court

WASHINGTON, DC, August 19, 2008 (ENS) - The nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council filed a lawsuit Monday in federal court in Washington DC to force the federal government to disclose studies on the effect of a new pesticide on honey bees.

Studies on the pesticide, clothianidin, were ordered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from the pesticide's manufacturer, Bayer CropScience, in 2003 when the federal agency granted the company a registration for the chemical.

An NRDC bee researcher and the organization's attorneys believe that the EPA has evidence of connections between pesticides and the mysterious honey bee die-offs reported across the country called "colony collapse disorder," or CCD, that it has not made public…

Manuka Honey Recommended for Stomach Ulcers

Dear Gordon Ramsay…
The Daily Mail (UK), 8/16/2008

…According to GP Dr Rob Hicks: ‘It was thought that “worry, hurry and curry” were the villains behind peptic (aka gastric) ulcers but research in Australia in the 1980s showed that about 80 per cent are caused by infection with the bacterium Helicobacter pylori. This damages the protective lining of the stomach and duodenum exposing the sensitive tissue of the stomach wall to powerful gastric acid, one of which – hydrochloric acid – is so corrosive it can dissolve iron nails.’

Some painkillers (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, or NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen) also damage the stomach lining and cause ulcers. The treatment is to stop them and take an acid-reducing drug. H pylori is treated with two antibiotics plus an acid-reducing drug, known as ‘triple therapy’. (Probiotics help replenish good gut bacteria and studies show they support the drugs and alleviate side effects. Dr Andrew Weil recommends Culturelle by Allergy Research, with Lactobacillus GG, £22 for 30 capsules, from Victoria Health, see below.) Dr Hicks also advocates two to three teaspoons daily of manuka honey, which has natural antibacterial compounds. Try Manuka Honey UMF20+ by Comvita Products, £22 for 250g…

Review: Honey Effective in Treating Diabetic Foot Ulcers

Practical Considerations of Using Topical Honey for Neuropathic Diabetic Foot Ulcers: A Review
Wisconsin Medical Journal, 2008 Jul;107(4):187-90

CONTEXT: It is increasingly important to identify and use low-cost effective dressings for treating diabetic foot ulcers as medical costs and rates of diabetes continue to rise. Honey is an inexpensive moist dressing with antibacterial and tissue-healing properties that has shown promise in the medical literature. Many clinicians are unfamiliar with its use, but patients with diabetic foot ulcers may wish to try honey therapy or discuss it with their physicians. The purpose of this review is to familiarize physicians with practical aspects of using honey to treat diabetic foot ulcers.

EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: The authors have experience using topical honey and are currently conducting a randomized controlled trial of its effectiveness in treating diabetic foot ulcers. In this review, the authors summarize evidence of honey's effectiveness, its hypothesized mechanism of action, potential risks and benefits, the types of honey available, and the nature of its application. Critical aspects of ulcer care are also reviewed.

CONCLUSION: Honey is a low-cost topical therapy with important potential for healing. Its use may be considered in diabetic foot ulcers after a discussion of risks and benefits and in conjunction with standard wound care principles.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Irradiation Recommended to Reduce Beeswax Contamination

Pesticide Build-Up Could Lead to Poor Honey Bee Health
Penn State (USA), 8/18/2008

Philadelphia, Pa. -- Honey bees industriously bring pollen and nectar to the hive, but along with the bounty comes a wide variety of pesticides, according to Penn State researchers. Add the outside assault to the pesticides already in the waxy structure of the hive, and bee researchers see a problem difficult to evaluate and correct. However, an innovative approach may mitigate at least some beeswax contamination.

The researchers present their analysis of pollen, brood, adult bees and wax samples today (Aug. 18) at the 236th national American Chemical Society meeting in Philadelphia. Those results show unprecedented levels of fluvalinate and coumaphos -- pesticides used in the hives to combat varroa mites -- in all comb and foundation wax samples. They also found lower levels of 70 other pesticides and metabolites of those pesticides in pollen and bees.

"Everyone figured that the acaricides (anti-varroa mite chemicals) would be present in the wax because the wax is reprocessed to form the structure of the hives," says Maryann Frazier, senior extension associate. "It was a bit of a shock to see the levels and the widespread presence of these pesticides."…

While beekeepers will have a difficult time controlling pesticide exposure outside the hive, the researchers tested a method for reducing the acaricide load in beeswax. Using gamma radiation from a cobalt 60 source housed at Penn State's Breazeale Reactor, they irradiated the sheets of beeswax that beekeepers use as the structural foundation for the bees to build their combs. They used radiation levels at the high end of that used to irradiate foods. Irradiation broke down about 50 percent of the acaricides in the wax.

"Gamma radiation is often used to kill viruses and other disease causing agents," says James L. Frazier, professor of entomology, Penn State. "Commercial irradiation firms usually decontaminate medical instruments or foods."

The researchers tried irradiation at a commercial plant and though some modifications were necessary to irradiate the wax sheets, it is possible. Some beekeepers already irradiate their equipment to get rid of any disease causing agents. However, it might be more efficient if the wax sheet supplier irradiated their product before sale to the beekeepers…

"We do not know that these chemicals have anything to do with Colony Collapse Disorder, but they are definitely stressors in the home and in the food sources," says Dr. Frazier. "Pesticides alone have not shown they are the cause of CCD. We believe that it is a combination of a variety of factors, possibly including mites, viruses and pesticides."…

Video: Indonesian Bee Pollen Collection

Propolis Improves Production, Egg Quality in Laying Hens

The Effects of Dietary Turkish Propolis and Vitamin C on Performance, Digestibility, Egg Production and Egg Quality in Laying Hens Under Different Environmental Temperatures
Asian-Aust. J. Anim. Sci, Vol. 21 No. 8:1164, August 2008

In this study, the effects of propolis and vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid) supplementation in diets were investigated on feed intake (FI), body weight (BW), body weight gain (BWG), feed conversion rate (FCR) and digestibility and on egg production and qualities (weight, mortality, shell thickness) in laying hens exposed to heat stress…

In conclusion, dietary supplementation of laying hens with anti-oxidants (vitamin C and propolis) can attenuate heat stress-induced oxidative damage. These positive effects were evidenced by increased growth performance and digestibility, improvement of egg shell thickness and egg weight in comparison to non-supplemented birds. Moreover, supplementation with propolis (5 g/kg diet) was the most efficient treatment.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Video: Indonesian Royal Jelly Production

Brazilian Propolis Gel Effective in Treating Denture Stomatitis

Efficacy of Brazilian Propolis Gel for the Management of Denture Stomatitis: A Pilot Study
Phytotherapy Research, Published Online: 11 Aug 2008

Abstract: Denture stomatitis presents as a chronic disease in denture-bearing patients, especially under maxillary prosthesis. Despite the existence of a great number of antifungal agents, treatment failure is observed frequently.

Propolis, a natural bee product, possesses well-documented antifungal and anti-inflammatory activities. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical efficacy of a new Brazilian propolis gel formulation in patients diagnosed with denture stomatitis...

All patients treated with Brazilian propolis gel and Daktarin® had complete clinical remission of palatal edema and erythema. This new Brazilian propolis gel formulation had efficacy comparable to Daktarin® and could be an alternative topical choice for the treatment of denture stomatitis.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Norwegian Article on Bee Venom Therapy

Denne kan lindre smerte
Giften fra honningbien skal ha smertelindrende effekt.
Av Geir Arne Johansen, DinSide, 8/9/2008

Vi invaderes av veps om dagen, og legevaktene rundt om i landet kan fortelle om rekordmange som tar kontakt etter å ha blitt stukket av de små, aggressive insektene.

Men mens vi hamstrer elektriske fluesmekkere og smører hovne stikk med aloe vera, later det til at en nær slektning av vepsen, nemlig honningbien, gjør god nytte for seg. Og da snakker vi ikke om honningproduksjon...

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Video From Bee Venom Therapy Article

Honey Has ‘Protective Role’ Against Postoperative Adhesions

Effect of Honey on Intestinal Morphology, Intraabdominal Adhesions and Anastomotic Healing
Phytotherapy Research, Published Online: 11 Aug 2008

Abstract: In the present study, attempts have been made to determine the effects of honey on intestinal morphology, postoperative adhesions, and the healing of colonic anastomoses in the rats after colonic resection and anastomosis…

Adhesion scores, bursting pressures and histopathological examinations were evaluated. Colonic bursting pressures of honey group were significantly better than control and artificial honey groups. Histological analysis of anastomotic site showed that submucosa and muscularis propria were nearly filled with granulation tissue and regular fibrin matrix in honey group. There was statistically significant difference between the adhesion scores of honey vs artificial honey and control groups. The scores of histological changes of ileum in honey group were significantly different from other groups.

These results indicate a protective role of honey against intraabdominal adhesions and anastomotic dehiscence.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Propolis Protects Against Early Phase of Colon Cancer

Aqueous and Ethanolic Extract Fractions from the Brazilian Propolis Suppress Azoxymethane-Induced Aberrant Crypt Foci in Rats
Oncol Rep, 2008 Sep;20(3):493-9.

Abstract: We investigated the effects of the two fractions, aqueous (AEP) and ethanolic extracts of propolis (EEP) of the Brazilian propolis on azoxymethane (AOM)-induced aberrant crypt foci (ACF)…

Dietary supplementation with AEP and EEP significantly reduced the multiplicity of ACF with the effect of EEP being more potent than AEP. In the ACF and their surrounding non-lesional crypts, significantly lowered cell proliferation was observed in the rats, administered with AOM, and the extracts, while neither fraction affected the apoptotic index.

Our findings suggest that AEP and EEP possess a chemopreventive ability in the early phase of colon carcinogenesis through the modulation of cell proliferation.

Friday, August 15, 2008

What is Medical Grade Honey?

Ask Karen: Medical Honey
By Karen McNew, WSLS10, 8/13/2008

Q: What is medical grade honey? How is it different from the honey I would get from a bee keeper?...

A: I did some checking and found an article about medical grade honey on that had information similar to a story featured in health team on WSLS 10.

That article referred to the medical grade honey as a combination of ingredients including “Manuka” honey.

Here is the explanation given in that article titled “Honey I Healed the Wound,” “A new honey-infused bandage called Medihoney was granted approval by the FDA in November. It is made with highly-absorbent seaweed soaked in a special, sterilized Manuka honey, produced from the oil of tea trees in Australia and New Zealand. Wound management experts are ecstatic. Not only has it closed some chronic wounds that have defied modern drugs, it acts as a protective barrier against secondary infections.”…

Honey Has Immuno-Modulatory Potential in Phagocytosis

Honey Modulates Oxidative Burst of Professional Phagocytes
Phytotherapy Research, Published Online: 12 Aug 2008

Abstract: The effects of natural honey and its major sugar constituents (i.e. D-fructose, D-glucose, maltose and sucrose) on phagocytic respiratory burst have been studied. Pre-incubated whole blood and isolated leukocytes with honey samples and sugars were induced for phagocytosis and the level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was monitored by using chemiluminescence assays.

Honey samples were found to decrease the luminol-enhanced chemiluminescence in opsonized zymosan-stimulated whole blood and isolated leukocytes with statistically significant differences; indicating inhibition of ROS production including hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl free radical and hypochlorous acid.

Thus honey appears to modify the oxidative burst process by inhibiting phagocytic myeloperoxidase activity. Chemiluminescence assays further showed that among the major sugar constituents of honey, D-fructose in high concentration exerted an inhibitory effect on exocytosis-associated myeloperoxidase catalyzed ROS formation.

These results pointed out an immuno-modulatory potential of honey in the course of phagocytosis.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Malaysian Kelulut Honey Known for Medicinal Properties

Attracting Visitors Like Bees to Honey
The New Straits Times (Malaysia), 8/14/2008

SERDANG: A sweet tooth and a love for insects, particularly bees, is what led Norlezah Baharom to start a business involving both.

"At first it just started out as a hobby. I reared some bees to harvest the honey, as I was told that natural honey has a lot of medicinal properties," she said.

Now the 47-year-old owns and manages Trigona Bee, a company that produces bee products such as honey, royal jelly, bees' wax, propolis and pollen.

Norliza said there were many types of honey depending on the source.

"Kelulut bees' honey is popular as it is quite difficult to collect, and is known for its medicinal contents," she said when met at her booth at the Malaysia Agriculture, Horticulture and Agrotourism (Maha) Show here yesterday…

For background, see:

Honey in the Malay Tradition
Syarifah Anisah Syed Agil Barakhbah
The Founder and Managing Director of Nona Roguy Group of Companies
1st International Conference on the Medicinal Uses of Honey, 26th - 28th August 2006

Honey is a prized delicacy to the Malays. The Malays traditionally do not farm the bees like in other community. The Malays belief that honey from wild bees is a genuine natural energizer, especially honey which drop from the comb known as madu dara (virgin honey).

There are four types of bees known to the Malays. They are the Tualang, Jungle, Cerung or Cerang bees and the Kelulut bees. All the bees except Kelulut have poisonous sting but the Jungle bee’s sting can cause death. Jungle and Cerung bees have a darker honey compared to Tualang honey. Kelulut bees are the smallest bees and are more of a ‘house bee’. The Malays considered these small bees have more medicinal powers.

For centuries honey is known to be the enemy of diseases. It is used as anti-ageing, it is able to give pleasure and enhance libido, enhancing immune system, kills bacteria, use in the treatment of bronchial catarrh, sore throat, coughs and colds. There is a special Malay recipe for treatment of asthma using egg, lime juice and honey. Honey is also restorative after serious illness. It is used in the preparation of the famous traditional Malay herbal remedy ubat periuk.

In addition honey is said to sooth pain, acts as antiseptic, hastens healing and is effective in curing burns, carbuncle, boils and diabetic wound. It is done by mixing honey with kapur sireh or selected herbal plants. Honey comb is known to cure diabetic wound. The Malays belief that the darker the honey the better as it is said to contain practically all minerals which help in maintaining hemoglobin. Kelulut honey is well known for its anti-ageing activities and in combination with honey comb is effective for treatment of tumors.

New French Website Dedicated to Manuka Honey, Propolis

Le Miel de Manuka is a new website designed to provide French speakers with an information source on manuka honey and propolis.

The site aims to act as an information source, and to educate French speakers about the benefits of manuka honey’s UMF properties.

Set up with the help of the people behind The New Zealand Honey Shop in London, Le Miel de Manuka has also involved a team of native French speakers familiar with the subject. The focus is in offering information to people in France, although still catering to the wider French-speaking community. This provides them with a good source in their own language, rather than trying to understand English websites.

The first stage of the site is now live. In future, more articles, news and research data will continue to be added.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

One in Three UK Beehives Wiped Out

Honeybee Population Collapses in UK as One in Three Hives Wiped Out in a Year
By Arthur Martin, The Daily Mail (UK), 8/13/2008

The number of honeybees in the UK has dramatically declined this year, according to a survey of beekeepers.

It found that nearly one in three beehives were wiped out during the winter and spring, prompting fears of a shortage of honey.

A decline in the honeybee could mean that the pollination of fruits and vegetables is not as extensive as usual.

The reported losses, by the British Beekeepers' Association, are markedly higher than the Government's figure earlier this year, which put the number of colonies lost at one in five…

Royal Jelly Exhibits ‘Marked Protective Effect’ on Liver Tissue

The Effects of Royal Jelly on Liver Damage Induced by Paracetamol in Mice
Experimental and Toxicologic Pathology, Article in Press

Abstract: The present study was undertaken to investigate the protective effect of royal jelly against paracetamol-induced liver damage…

It was shown that PAR significantly increased serum ALT, AST, ALP, liver MDA levels and significantly decreased liver GSH-Px activity, when compared to the control group (Group 1). On the other hand, meaningful changes were observed in the biochemical parameters of the group which was administered long-term RJ (Group 6)…

In conclusion, the administration of royal jelly as a hepatoprotective agent for 7 days against paracetamol-induced liver damage was determined to exhibit marked protective effect on liver tissue.

Propolis Ineffective in Treating Fungal Lung Infection

Activity of Propolis in an Experimental Model of Pneumocystosis
Saudi Medical Journal, 2008; Vol. 29 (8): 1115-1118

Objectives: To investigate the anti Pneumocystis effects of propolis on Pneumocystis carinii P. carinii in rat model…

Results: Untreated animals showed P. carinii infection level with a mean +/= standard deviation log number of cysts per gram of lung tissue of 4.6 +/= 1.6 at the end of the experiment. Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole 50/250 mg/kg/day has significantly reduced the log number of cysts per gram to 1.8 +/= 1.6 (p<0.001). There was no reduction found in the number of cysts in infected animals treated with 30, 50, and 100 mg of propolis/kg/day, and so the results were not statistically significant compared with the control group.

Conclusions: In our rat model of pneumocystosis the efficacy of propolis, this was used in folk medicine since ancient times, found completely ineffective.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Writer Critical of Life Mel Honey Cancer Claims

Honey Treatment Amounts to Sweet Nothing
James Randerson, The Guardian (UK), 8/12/2008

A "new hope" for cancer sufferers or a jar of exorbitantly expensive honey? How the makers of Life Mel prey on the fear and desperation of patients

Sex sells. But fear, pain and desperation sell even more effectively...

What does Life Mel do? The honey - which is produced by Holywell Health - supposedly targets neutropenia, a side-effect of chemotherapy in which the level of a particular class of white blood cells drops, leaving the patient open to infection. But this dangerous side-effect of chemotherapy could disappear, the company claims, if you purchase a pot of special honey - a bargain at £37.50.

Of course, no quack remedy would be complete without a celebrity endorsement. In this case, it is the actress Rebekah Gibbs who plays hospital technician Nina Farr in the BBC drama Casualty. Gibbs was diagnosed as having breast cancer in January and since April has been writing a diary about her treatment for the Mirror.

After seeing her newspaper column, the PR folks for Life Mel kindly sent her agent some sample pots of their honey to try, and in a subsequent column and video on the Mirror's website she told her reader about it.

This week I've started taking a special honey. It's called Life Mel and at more than £37.50 a pop it isn't cheap, but it's supposed to work wonders ... I'm taking two teaspoons per day and so far so good, I figure there's no harm done as it's so natural.

Her agent said that Gibbs is not being paid to promote the product.

Natural it might be, but does Life Mel actually work? The company's PR people claim that they have received hundreds of positive accounts from patients. "Life Mel constantly receives letters and phone calls from people who have tried the product and felt the benefits," said Carolanne Bamford. Hollywell Health claims to have sold more than 20,000 jars.

But anecdotes are meaningless as evidence. That is why we don't allow companies to sell drug treatments based on the say-so of a handful of patients who claim to have got better…

Honey One of Nature’s Healers

Keeping an Eye on Ugly Wounds
The Irish Times, 8/12/2008

Nature's healers

They say time is the best healer, but sometimes nature has a few other tricks to help.

In recent years, Manuka honey from New Zealand has been shown to aid wound healing, and it is now available in dressings.

Regular honey has some topical healing properties, but Manuka honey, which is produced by bees that visit the Manuka tree, contains an additional factor that is thought to help ward off the bugs.

"Honey has hydrogen peroxide in it, and for most honeys, that's what gives the anti-bacterial effect. But for Manuka honey, when they took out the hydrogen peroxide, it appeared to still have an anti-bacterial effect," says Dr Georgina Gethin, a lecturer at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

Her studies on using Manuka honey to treat wounds have found it to be effective against MRSA, and also in the wound becoming more acidic, which is associated with healing.

However, she cautions against using food-grade honey on chronic wounds, as it could harbour bacterial spores. "If you buy a jar of honey, it was manufactured and packaged for eating. Whereas in wound care the honey now comes in tubes or dressings, and it has been sterilised so any potential spores have been eliminated."

Researcher to Tackle Colony Collapse Disorder

Haagen-Dazs Fellow to Tackle Bee Viruses at UC Davis
UC Davis, 8/11/2008

Insect virus researcher Michelle Flenniken, a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of California, San Francisco, has been selected as the new Haagen-Dazs postdoctoral fellow at UC Davis.

"We're hoping that Michelle Flenniken's expertise in molecular virology will lead to understanding one of the factors contributing to colony collapse disorder and lead to strategies that increase honeybee survival," said Lynn Kimsey, chair of UC Davis' Department of Entomology and director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology…

Monday, August 11, 2008

Video: The Science of Honey Healing

Claude Stratford, founder of Comvita, and Alan Bougen describe how scientific research has shown that Manuka honey has exceptional healing properties.

Claude Stratford talks about his early experiences using honey to heal wounds and Alan Bougen explains how science has revealed the exceptional healing properties of Manuka honey.

View the video.

Beeswax Used to Block Nasal Allergies

Hayfever Relief Without The Drugs
Outdoors Magic, 7/22/2008

With something that occasionally resembles summer being upon us, it's traditional for a significant portion of the UK population to sink into pollen-induced misery thanks to hayfever. If that's you, then you might be interested in a new drug-free pollen blocker called HayMax.

The classic answer to hayfever are antihistamines, but they can make you feel drowsy, which isn't necessarily a great idea if you're on the crux pitch of a hard scramble, or simply trying to enjoy the mountains.

The difference with HayMax is that it's not a drug, it simply aims to stop the pollen getting into your body in the first place. You simply apply it round the base of both nostrils two or three times a day to create what the HayMax people say is a 'pollen barrier'.

The product is made entirely from certified organic ingredients including beeswax from the Zambian rain forest, essential oils and vegetable, corn and sunflower oils…

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Bumblebee Attractant Sought to Replace Declining Honeybees

Ore. Researcher Hopes Dye Attracts Bees to Fields
The Associated Press, 8/9/2008

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Oregon State University researchers hope that a fluorescent dye can attract more native bumblebees to farm fields to replace declining honeybees and boost the numbers of an insect essential to agriculture.

Bumblebees see in the ultraviolet spectrum, just beyond the light visible to humans.

Oregon State entomologist Sujaya Rao and other researchers learned recently that native bumblebees - which have nearly disappeared since the 1990s - are attracted to the blue fluorescent dye.

"Something about that blue is acting like a magnet," Rao said.

The discovery, made last summer, could help boost bumblebee numbers and enable local farmers to rely more on the native insects as pollinators…

Manuka Honey Reduces Colitis Inflammation

Effect of Different Doses of Manuka Honey in Experimentally Induced Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Rats
Phytotherapy Research, Published Online: 7 Aug 2008

Abstract: To evaluate the effect of different doses of Manuka honey in experimentally induced inflammatory bowel disease in rats…

Manuka honey at different doses provided protection against TNBS-induced colonic damage. There was significant protection with Manuka honey 5 g/kg as well as with 10 g/kg body weight compared with the control.

All the treated groups showed reduced colonic inflammation and all the biochemical parameters were significantly reduced compared with the control in the Manuka honey treated groups. Manuka honey at different doses restored lipid peroxidation as well as improved antioxidant parameters. Morphological and histological scores were significantly reduced in the low dose Manuka honey treated group.

In the inflammatory model of colitis, oral administration of Manuka honey 5 g/kg and Manuka honey 10 g/kg body weight significantly reduced the colonic inflammation. The present study indicates that Manuka honey is efficacious in the TNBS-induced rat colitis model, but these results require further confirmation in human studies.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Brazilian Researchers Create First Antivenom for Bee Stings

A study conducted by a team of Brazilian researchers recently developed the first antivenom serum for bee stings. Initiated in 2005, the antidote is currently undergoing clinical trials in Hospital Vital Brazil and the Hospital of the USP, both in Sao Paulo, and should reach the market later this year. The research, led by teachers Osmar Malaspina and Mario Sergio Palma, the Centre for Studies on Social Insects and Department of Biology, the Institute of Biosciences (IB), UNESP, Rio Claro campus, was officially presented on August 1, 2008, at the Butantan Institute in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

To obtain the antidote, the researchers conducted a large-scale study of the structure and function of proteins in bee venom. The test revealed 134 proteins, of which nine of were considered novel.

According to the Ministry of Health and Health Department State of Sao Paulo, in 2005, some 3,500 people in the state suffered attacks of bees and wasps. In the same period, also in Sao Paulo, the mortality rate rose from 0.35 to 1.15 per 100 thousand inhabitants.

The problem also occurs in countries like the United States, where from 1991 to 2001, 533 people died of attacks by bees and wasps.

For more information, contact Prof. Dr. Osmar Malaspina: - tel. 19-3526-4169

Saudi Officials Warns of Honey Mixed with Viagra

Honey Mixed with Viagra
The Saudi Gazette, 8/9/2009

Riyadh - Health officials are warning the public from consuming honey being advertised as medication, which can increase sexual desire, stamina and drive, Al-Riyadh reported.

The Central Laboratory for Food and Drugs at the Ministry of Health discovered the brand “Powerhorse,” to have been mixed with herbs and Viagra.

Haya Al-Jawhar, Head of the Central Apparatus and Studies Department at the Central Lab discovered that the honey contained large quantities “sildenafil citrate,” which is a chemical component of Viagra.

“We found that a 120 gram sample of the honey had the equivalent of 10 Viagra pills,” Al-Jawhar said…

Friday, August 08, 2008

Veterinarian Uses Honey to Heal Wounds

Honey Helps Heal Wounds
By Joe Graedon and Teresa Graedon, The Hartford Courant, 8/8/2008

Q.I work with animals. Yesterday, we had a dog rip out her stitches to a point where closure was not an option. Our veterinarian placed honey on a dressing and bandaged up our little beagle. Today, the wound already looks much better.

A. Honey has been used for thousands of years to help heal wounds. Medical-grade honey kills antibiotic-resistant bacteria. When applied to the forearm, this special Dutch honey (Revamil) kept germs from growing on the skin.

The manufacturer also has developed a veterinary formulation called Vetramil, which is supposed to discourage licking.

Study Looks at Pesticide Residues in Nectar, Pollen

Dynamics of Pesticide Residues in Nectar and Pollen of Mustard ( Brassica juncea (L.) Czern.) Grown in Himachal Pradesh (India)
Journal Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, Issue Volume 144, Numbers 1-3/September, 2008

Abstract: Residues dynamics of Endosulfan (525.00 g a.i. ha−1), Imidacloprid seed treatment (21 g a.i. kg−1), Lambdacyhalothrin (75.00 g a.i. ha−1) and Spiromesifen (225.00 g a.i. ha−1) in nectar and pollen of mustard, Brassica juncea (L.) Czern. grown in Himachal Pradesh (India) were determined through bioassay (using Drosophila melanogaster Meig. as test organism) and GC (Gas chromatographic) and HPLC (High performance liquid chromatographic) methods…

It was found that Imidcloprid seed treatment was practically harmless to honey bees, whereas a waiting period of 5 days must be observed on crops sprayed with these chemicals during blooms to avoid any accidental hazards to honey bees.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Apitherapy is the Cultivation of Health

The Flower & The Bee (South Africa)

In the beginning there was a flower and a bee. Dana Sumar reports.

…While herbalism seems to be comfortably well accepted by the West, apitherapy has been forgotten. A revival started only 20 to 30 years ago.

As a philosophy, apitherapy is a form of harmony between the individual and the environment…

As a medical principle apitherapy is primarily the cultivation of health and its re-establishment when sickness interferes. Prevention of disease is not only about avoidance of illness, it should be more about celebrating health and living in health. I see the products of the beehive celebrating life in a wonderfully active, productive and compelling manner…

Researchers Discover ‘Novel’ Bacterial Flora in Honey Stomach of Honeybees

Detection and Identification of a Novel Lactic Acid Bacterial Flora Within the Honey Stomach of the Honeybee Apis mellifera
Current Microbiology, Published online: 29 July 2008

Abstract: This investigation concerned the question of whether honeybees collect bacteria that are beneficial for humans from the flowers that contribute to formation of their honey. Bacteria originating from the types of flowers involved, and found in different anatomic parts of the bees, in larvae, and in honey of different types, were sampled during a 2-year period…

A novel bacterial flora composed of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) of the genera Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which originated in the honey stomach of the honeybee, was discovered. It varied with the sources of nectar and the presence of other bacterial genera within the honeybee and ended up eventually in the honey.

It appeared that honeybees and the novel LAB flora may have evolved in mutual dependence on one another. It was suggested that honey be considered a fermented food product because of the LAB involved in honey production.

The findings are seen as having clear implications for future research in the area, as providing a better understanding the health of honeybees and of their production and storage of honey, and as having clear relevance for future honeybee and human probiotics.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Malaysian ‘Masculine Honey’ Used as Energy Booster

POLENS: Making Headway in the Herbal Product Industry
By Jenny Lanong

SHAH ALAM, Aug 5 (Bernama) - The rainforest is a veritable pharmaceutical store. It supports the growth of medicinal plants and herbs that are rich in beneficial nutrients and active constituents, which are used as traditional cures for various ailments as well as to maintain general health and well-being.

The rich diversity in natural resources of the rainforest has provided a platform for the development of the agro-based industry dealing in the manufacture of herbal products in Malaysia.

There has been a steady growth in demand in both the local and export markets, for herbal extracts as food supplements, either in capsule or liquid form.

The increasing popularity of herbal extracts as a form of health supplements justify that the development of herbal industry be given serious consideration.

Under the 9th Malaysia Plan (RMK-9), the government is focused on developing the herbal product market as a new segment targeted to spearhead the economic growth in the country.

Among the local herbs considered suitable as health supplements are: tongkat ali (Eurycoma), pegaga (Centella), misai kuching (Orthosiphon), hempedu bumi (Andrographis), kacip fatimah (Labisia pumila), mengkudu (Morinda citrifolia), dukung anak (Phyllanthus), halia (Zingiber officinale), mas cotek (Ficus deltoidea) and limau purut (Citrus hystrix)…

Projek Lebah Negeri Selangor (POLENS) Public Relations and Product Development Manager, Azman Jamaludin believes that the agro-based herbal industry has the potentials to generate the economic development of the country…

POLENS "madu jantan" (i.e."masculine honey"), which comprise a mixture of royal jelly and herbal extracts like tongkat ali and ginseng, is taken as an energy booster. It contains polyphenol, which act as an antioxidant that protects the cells and body chemicals against damage caused by free radicals…

Freezing is Best Way to Maintain Quality of Bee Pollen

Proteome Analysis of Tea Pollen (Camellia sinensis) Under Different Storage Conditions
J. Agric. Food Chem, August 5, 2008

Abstract: The protein complement of tea pollen collecting from tea tree (Camellia sinensis) was compared under different storage conditions…

Two hundred and sixty-nine and 396 proteins were detected in pollen stored at room temperature (RT) and −20 °C, respectively. Forty-three of the identified proteins were assigned to defense-related functions, energy metabolism, cytoskeleton, nucleic acid metabolism, membrane transport, amino acid metabolism, stress response, protein metabolism, transcription, fat metabolism, others, and function unknown proteins.

The abundance analysis showed that more proteins related to stress response, nucleic acid metabolism, fat metabolism, and membrane transport are lost at RT than at −20 °C, while proteins related to defense and energy metabolism showed a reverse relation. For the others, no differences were found between the two storage conditions. During the determination of the peptides mass fingerprinting (PMF) of each spot, 35 proteins were identified in tea pollen for the first time.

Thus, our data present an initial molecular picture of bee colleted tea pollen, and our results suggest that freezing is the best way to maintain the quality of tea pollen.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Heating Honey Does Not Alter Aroma

Influence of Simulated Industrial Thermal Treatments on the Volatile Fractions of Different Varieties of Honey
Food Chemistry, Volume 112, Issue 2, 15 January 2009, Pages 329-338

Abstract: The aim of this study was to determine if the volatile fraction of honey is affected by the application of standard industrial thermal treatment processes. Four types of Spanish honey were studied: three of floral origin (citrus, rosemary and polyfloral) and the fourth from honeydew.

Each sample of honey was divided into three parts: one was left untreated, one was liquefied (at 45 °C for 48 h) and the other was both liquefied and pasteurized (at 80 °C for 4 min). All the samples analyzed were characterized to determine their melissopalynological, physicochemical (pH, moisture, total acidity, conductivity, hydroxymethylfurfural, and diastase activity), and volatile profiles.

Type of honey had a greater impact on volatile fraction variations than did heat treatment. The overall volatile profile of each kind of honey permitted the classification of the honeys by botanical origin, revealing that there were practically no differences between the raw, liquefied, and pasteurized samples of each honey.

These findings suggest that industrial processes conducted under controlled conditions should not significantly alter the intrinsic aroma of honey.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Tanzanian Parents Use Honey to Treat Burns

Causes, Magnitude and Management of Burns in Under-Fives in District Hospitals in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
East African Journal of Public Health, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2008, pp. 38-42

Objectives: To determine the causes, magnitude and management of burns in children under five years of age who were admitted in the district hospitals of Dar es Salaam City, Tanzania…

Forty nine percent were males while 50.5% were females. Most of the children (54.9%) were aged between 1-2 years. 78.4 % had scalds while 21.6 % had flame burns. No children were found to have burns caused by chemicals or electricity. Most of the burns (97.5%) occurred accidentally, although some (2.5%) were intentional. 68.6 % of these burn injuries occurred in the kitchen. Immediately after burn 87.3% of the children had first aid applied on their wounds while 12.7% didn’t apply anything. Of the agents used, honey was the most used (32.8%) followed by cold water (16.7%). The source of knowledge on these agents was from relatives and friends (72.5%), schools (7%), media (6%) and medical personnel (14%)…

Discussion: …Honey has been used for wound treatment as long as 2000 years before bacteria were discovered to be the cause of infection. Recently honey has been reported to inhibit around 60 species of bacteria including aerobes and anaerobes, gram positive, gram negative and also antifungal action to Aspergillus spp and Penicillium spp (12). Its activity is based on its osmotic effect of its high sugar content and like other sugar syrups and sugar pastes has an osmolarity sufficient to inhibit microbial growth (13-15). Honey has also lymphocyte and phagocytic activity and to some extent activates the immune response to infection (16-17). Adverse reactions with honey are rare, and there was no adverse reaction noted other than a localized stinging sensation described by some patients which may be due to the acidity of honey as it has not been reported when the acidity is neutralized (18-20).

Neonicotinoids May Be Responsible Bee Deaths

Are Toxins Killing The Bees?
Al Meyerhoff, Hartford Courant (USA), 8/4/2008

It's likely that most people have never heard of Gaucho. And no, it's not a South American cowboy. I'm talking about a pesticide.

There is increasing reason to believe that Gaucho and other members of a family of highly toxic chemicals — neonicotinoids — may be responsible for the deaths of billions of honeybees worldwide. Some scientists believe that these pesticides, which are applied to seeds, travel systemically through the plant and leave residues that contaminate the pollen, resulting in bee death or paralysis.

The French refer to the effect as "mad bee disease" and in 1999 were the first to ban the use of these chemicals, which are currently only marketed by Bayer (the aspirin people) under the trade names Gaucho and Poncho. Germany followed suit this year, and its agricultural research institute said it concluded that the poisoning of the bees was because of the rub-off of the pesticide clothianidin (that's Pancho) from corn seeds.

So why did the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2002 grant an "emergency" exemption allowing increased use of Gaucho — typically invoked during a major infestation — when only a few beetles were found in blueberries? Why did the agency also grant a "conditional" registration for its close relative, Pancho, allowing the chemical on the market with only partial testing? And why is the agency, hiding behind a curtain of "trade secrets," still refusing to disclose whether the additional tests required of companies in such cases were conducted and, if so, with what results?...

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Propolis Component May Help Treat Blood Poisoning

Effects of Caffeic Acid Phenethyl Ester (CAPE) on Sepsis in Rats
Inflammation, Volume 31, Number 4, August 2008

Abstract: Sepsis is still a major cause of the high mortality rate in the intensive care unit. Many studies have been published about the severity of sepsis, but the cause of mortality in sepsis and multiorgan failure is still obscure.

This study investigated the effects of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) particularly on the inflammatory and related histopathological changes in the lung, liver and kidney in an experimental sepsis model...

The induction of sepsis resulted in a significant increase in serum glucose, leukocytes, urea, creatinine, LDH levels in BAL, plasma MDA, AST and ALT levels in the sepsis + saline group. The use of CAPE significantly decreased these parameters.

Histopathological examination revealed less congestion, portal inflammation, and focal necrosis of the liver, and less congestion, edema, and emphysematous and inflammatory changes in the lung in the sepsis + CAPE group than in the other groups.

These results support that CAPE may be used for the treatment of organ failure during sepsis.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Propolis Flavonoids ‘Can Improve Growth in Young Calves’

Growth, Weaning Performance and Blood Indicators of Humoral Immunity in Holstein Calves Fed Supplemental Flavonoids
Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, Volume 92 Issue 4, Pages 456 - 462

ABSTRACT: The primary objective was to test the hypothesis that flavonoids mediate immune response and affect calf performance…

Calves received the treatments as a tablet until weaning or a daily intake of 680 g starter. After weaning, calves received no supplemental flavonoids and monitored until 120 days of age. The flavonoids were extracted from propolis...

Results suggest that flavonoids affect the humoral immune response and can improve growth in young calves. This response depended on calf age. Future studies are needed to further evaluate the premise that dietary forages or the main source of flavonoids are helpful for a less stressful weaning in the modern calf raising.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Manuka Honey Effective in Eradicating MRSA Super Bugs

Bacteriological Changes in Sloughy Venous Leg Ulcers Treated with Manuka Honey or Hydrogel: an RCT
Journal of Wound Care, Vol. 17, Iss. 6, 29 May 2008, pp 241 - 247

Objective: To determine the qualitative bacteriological changes that occurred during a four-week treatment period with either manuka honey or a hydrogel dressing. This was the secondary outcome of a randomised controlled trial (RCT) that compared the efficacy of the two treatments in desloughing venous leg ulcers…

Conclusion: Manuka honey was effective in eradicating MRSA from 70% of chronic venous ulcers. The potential to prevent infection is increased when wounds are desloughed and MRSA is eliminated. This can be beneficial to prevent cross-infection.

Video: Breakthrough to Combat Honey's Varroa Mite

3News (New Zealand), 8/1/2008

The New Zealand honey industry is in for a boost after the discovery of breakthrough treatment to combat the varroa mite…