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The Healing Power of Honey

By Elizabeth Cole, author of 101 Things To Do With Honey

Apitherapy, the treatment of various conditions using honeybee products, has been around a long time. Honey is one of the oldest medicines we have, with proof of its healing power dating back more than 5000 years. Even Hippocrates found that honey "cleans sores and ulcers of the lips, heals carbuncles and running sores." It has been a staple ingredient of folk medicines throughout the ages and now, it is even gaining credibility with current medical and scientific communities. British researchers have proven that applying raw honey to fresh wounds prevents infection as well as any medication and often eliminates the need for antibiotics. They have also learned that honey-treated cuts and scrapes heal quicker than those treated with medicated ointments. Other researchers have found that honey can alleviate asthma, calm nerves and induce sleep, ease pain and relieve diarrhea.

Raw honey can be a valuable part of your "First Aid Kit." Here’s a few suggestions:

Bee Stings : Dab on a bit of honey immediately. It helps draw the stinger out, eases the pain and neutralizes poisons.

Blisters : Combine 1 tsp. honey, 1 tsp. Aloe Vera gel and 10 drops lavender oil. Dab on blister, cover with bandage. Change bandage and repeat 2 to 3 times per day.

Burns : Immediately spread a thin layer of raw honey over the burn. Especially good for oil splatter type burns and steam burns, but of benefit to all types of burns. It relieves stinging, prevents blisters and infection, and speeds healing.

Sunburn : Combine 1 cup of apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup of honey and 1/4 cup of Aloe Vera gel . Paint onto sunburned skin with pastry brush or damp sponge.

Wounds : The high levels of potassium found in honey make it very difficult, if not impossible, for bacteria to survive. Applying a thin layer of raw honey to any cut, scrape or scratch is beneficial.

Beyond treating injury and illness, there are other reasons to pay attention to honey. Incorporating it into your daily diet is an excellent step to take towards maintaining general good health. Dr. D.C. Jarvis says, "I am saddened when people tell me that they don’t eat honey because it costs more than white sugar. In the long run, you must pay either the grocer or the druggist."

Honey can be substituted for white sugar very easily, even in baking, and the health benefits for everyone but especially for children are worth every penny.

By Elizabeth Cole, author of 101 Things To Do With Honey

Sweet Water Bliss!

by Elizabeth Cole

If you were to make honey part of your personal care routine, you would be in good company. Women throughout history, including Cleopatra and Queen Anne of England, have used it to pamper and take care of themselves.

Today we know that honey removes dirt, is antibacterial, soothing and smoothing, and regulates skin moisture. It is also protective and nutritive for all skin types, but especially for blemished, dry and sensitive skin. The following ideas are wonderful for children as well as adults.

Honey Oil Bath
Combine one cup of honey with a quarter cup of olive, jojoba or grapeseed oil. Pour into bath under running water.

Milk and Honey Bath
Dissolve a half cup of honey in one quart of very warm water. Gradually stir in one cup of dried milk powder, stirring until powder is completely dissolved. Add to bath water.

Honey Soda Bath
Follow directions for Milk and Honey Bath, but add one cup of baking soda with the dried milk powder. For very dry and/or irritated skin.

Flu Bath
Combine a half cup of Epson salts with two tablespoons of coconut oil. Add a quarter cup of honey, combine well, and then add fifteen to twenty drops of essential eucalyptus oil. Add to very warm bath, soak in it for at least half an hour.

Excerpt from "101 Things To Do With Honey " by Elizabeth Cole

DMSO – Human Use

Q. A friend recently told me about the many uses of a product called DMSO. You can buy it at health food stores. She said it can relieve just about every ailment you can think of from acne to joint pain and that it works on pets too. I looked it up on the internet and it certainly sounds like a "wonder drug." Has anyone heard of this before or has anyone used the product? Are there any testimonies out there? I would like to hear from others who may have used it. Thank you. – Ana

My aunt used to use it all the time. I think it comes in a gel and liquid form. She would swear by it! If you had anything that hurt she would get that out and rub it on. She mostly had neck pain. She would rub some on the back of her neck and then cover it with a thin cling wrap. That is because it would otherwise leave a wet-greasy mark on her shirt collar. It has a very weird odor also. But she was such a believer in DMSO! – Connie

We have long used DMSO for our horses. It works great on the legs when they have been worked and are a bit sore. I have never heard of people using it, though. I guess if it is good enough for your beloved animals, then it must be fine for humans—IF used moderately and not in large doses. I would do some careful checking with your own doctor AND veterinarian before using it on your own self.

An alternative might be Everflex Cream which has proven scientific research to help.  I go with the natural stuff before drugs, but I’ve found mixed feelings on DMSO.

My father used DMSO for years. We used it on our horses, and you could only get it from a veterinarian. I am surprised that you can now buy it at health food stores. He claimed that it relieved his aches and pains – the problem? It smells! It goes through your system quickly and the smell comes out your pores!! No one else in my family would use it because of the smell. I don’t know of any scientific research, but he swore by it! – Nancy

DMSO is a bi-product of the pulp and paper industry. It was discovered and tested in Camas Washington more than 25 years ago. Many people claim to receive relief from arthritic joint pain. Since my mother-in-law worked in this paper mill she was able to get some of the product for herself and my husband, unfortunately it did not work on his arthritic knees AND it has a very strange side effect. No matter where you use it you will have the strong taste of garlic in your mouth. So it’s like any other ‘wonder’ drug. Maybe it will help and maybe not. – Toni

My dog has a disease called panniculitis, which is inflammation of the subcutaneous fat under the skin. It is the result of an allergic reaction to her rabies vaccination. She has been ill for almost 2 years with this with no cure in sight, just management. She get lumps under her skin. We had one removed which helped her but is getting more. Our Vet Dermatologist and the lab analysts have told me to use DMSO on these lumps and it should shrink them and to be sure to use MEDICAL grade. It also comes in an industrial grade that is NOT for use on humans or animals. All the research I did on the Internet showed me that this is a dangerous drug if you don’t really need it. The vet told me to use latex gloves when I apply it to the dog’s skin because it will be absorbed into my skin which is dangerous. It is used on horses as a liniment on their legs for soreness. Take care and do some research before you use it. I have decided not to use it on my pet unless she gets really bad. – Erline

I used to work with horses at K-State. We used DMSO some there and it does indeed help with almost all that ails the joints, etc. HOWEVER, please be advised that when you touch it, even the tiniest bit, you will have a horrible (sort-of rotten garlic) taste in your mouth ALL day. When I used it on the horses, I always used gloves and tried not to breathe it either because that did it too. It absorbs through your skin and causes the taste. But some people don’t have this problem. I took an unscientific survey with my co-workers and it doesn’t seem to bother men as much as women. The vet I worked with in KC used it on his knees and never had the taste problem but I sure do and so did the other women in both places. So, before you spend much money on it take heed. If your pain is bad enough, you may want to try it anyway. LeAnn

DMSO was used by horse owners and vets for years for swelling and achy joints. Because the orginal was so smelly it wasn’t used by people. Now that it has been perfected, you will get noticable relief from it. I use another form of it internally, MSM, because I have fibromyalgia and at times, hurt everywhere. Mine is combined with glucosomine but you have to take it a couple of weeks before you feel the difference.. – Crystal

Reforming Crystal Deodorant Pieces

Q. I use salt crystals in a rock or roll up form for my deodorant (works better than the other stuff for me!). I have a jar full of broken crystal pieces from when I dropped the rock on the floor or the roll up fell out of the container. Any suggestions for how to "melt" it down and reform those pieces into one or two solid pieces. I know they’ll melt in water, but what about the shaping & drying?

A. Try dissolving your broken pieces in the least possible amount of water.  Line a small box or can with aluminum foil and then with plastic wrap – leave a generous overhang of both. Pour the dissolved crystals with liquid into your container and leave to dry. This may take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks depending on size, moisture content, humidity, warmth, etc. The bigger/thicker piece you are making the longer it will take to dry out completely. When you are sure it is completely dry, use the foil and plastic wrap to pull it out of the mold and then peel off the foil and plastic wrap. You might also use a small candle mold like a tiny pillar, but line with plastic wrap. Mary

Sensitive Facial Skin

Q.   I have very sensitive facial skin and I need to find a natural way to cleanse my face, and get rid of skin blemishes and pimples. Can anyone help me in finding something that really works?

The Natria Skin Care line is designed for sensitive skin

Honey Cleansing Scrub – Mix 1 tablespoon honey with 2 tablespoons finely ground almonds and 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice. Rub gently onto face. Rinse off with warm water.

I use instant dry milk on my face.  I add a little water to dissolve and then let the mixture dry on my face like a mask.  After the mixture has dried enough I rinse it off with tepid water.  Feels great and my skin looks fresh. Lorraine

Use a mild facial soap to wash your face. Ivory works quite well. I use Black Ointment to get rid of occasional acne. It works great to get rid of redness overnight. It has a strange odor so I would not recommend using it during the day.

I found that using Dove beauty bar is the best thing for sensitive and acne prone skin, and its not outrageously priced. It was recommended to me by a dermatologist and I have been using it for years. I truly love this product!

I have found nothing works as well as cheap, glycerin soap…it cleans without drying and can usually be found at dollar stores…only thing with glycerin soap is it melts easily if it lies in water…so put it in a draining soap dish…when I was a teen with lots of oily skin and blemishes, I used witchhazel to remove oil and debris from my skin…it is still very cheap…hope this helps!