What is Apitherapy?
The word Apitherapy is Latin Apis (bee) and Greek therapeuein (method for treating humans or animals against various diseases), ie Apitherapy is the therapeutic use of bee products such as honey, pollen, royal jelly, propolis, etc., for therapeutic and preventive.
Most often, the term is used to describe Apitherapy therapeutic use of Apitoxins (bee venom), but today is also known as Apitoxiterapia. In this case, therapy is mainly based on the inoculation of apitoxina, either by placing the bee on the patient's skin to itch and inoculate it, or by direct inoculation by injection. In any case, we recommend additionally consume other bee products to achieve more effective results in synergy.
Scientific studies are discovering the therapeutic properties of all bee products, apitherapy considering importance as a method of alternative medicine given the beneficial health effects.
The exact origin of apitherapy is difficult to determine and may be registered even in ancient Egypt, Greece and China. Honey and other bee products have been used for thousands of years and their healing properties have been included in various religious texts like the Vedas, the Bible and the Koran.
Bees are on Earth for over 50 million years ago , fossils testify to the existence of bugs in the Paleozoic era, long before the appearance of man.
The cave paintings of Europe dating from 10,000 BC depict man harvesting honey, so that from the beginning has been considered a very popular product and for healing diseases (Richard Jones, Bee World, 1997).
The Hindu , 4,000 years BC, and used honey as food and propolis as a remedy for wounds (Potschinkova, 1996).
3000 years ago BC appears first record written in Apitherapy, a Sumerian tablet dated around 3000 BC in Mesopotamia, which was a requirement of the use of honey to treat skin infections or ulcers (Jones, 1997).
The Egyptian Traditional Medicine (Medical Papyrus), for 2,000 years BC, very frequently used bee products, especially honey, wax and propolis ("black wax"). Propolis was used along with other ingredients to embalm the bodies of the pharaohs to death and keep them well mummified.
Around 400 BC, Hippocrates , the Father of Medicine, used bee venom and honey recommended for many diseases, especially external use for wounds.
The Chinese medicine since more than 2000 years, also been widely used bee products in medicinal uses for numerous indications, as attested to numerous writings and doctors of that culture: "The fifty-two recipes" 200 BC, "Book Herbal " Sheng Nong year 10 AD, Dr. Zhan Zhongjing 150-219 AD, Dr. Tao Hongjing 452-536 AD, Dr. Liu Yuxi 841 dc; "wise prescriptions" Hospital Song 992 dc; "food herbs" Dr. Li Gao 1180-1251,"Classification and identification of herbs" Dr. Li Shizhen 1518-1593, "Law Brief Innate Knowledge" of Fang Yizhi 1611-1671.
In the years 742-814 AD, Charlemagne , the great conqueror was miraculously cured of chronic gout bee stings.
One of the first references to literature containing solids about the healing properties of honey is the Koran.
And in the nineteenth and twentieth prestigious doctors wrote books which describe in detail the benefits of bee venom, as in the case of Dr. CW Wolf in his book "Apis Meliffica or honeybee venom considered as a therapeutic " in 1858 and Dr. Bodog Beck in his book "Bee Venom Therapy"in 1935. Dr. Philip Terc in 1888 published the results of their study "Report on a Peculiar Connection between bites of bees and rheumatism" , was the first research scientist to describe the medical use of bee venom and therefore considered the father of apitherapy.
In 1920 Japan began acupuncture with bees called Apipuntura .
And in the last 50 years many countries in Europe, mainly in the U.S. and China have conducted scientific studies that support the therapeutic action of all bee products. Many of these studies have been and are supported and published by Apimondia, International Federation of Beekeepers' Associations.
THERAPEUTIC USES OF BEE VENOM
While apitherapy includes the use and consumption of bee products such as honey, pollen, ... with important therapeutic properties, the term is often associated with therapy with bee venom. This therapy is used as a treatment to dissolve scar tissue (keloids) and diseases like arthritis , the bursitis, the tendinitis , shingles , cancer, arthritis and multiple sclerosis, among other conditions.
The best known use is in all kinds of rheumatism arthritis deformans, osteoarthritis, gout, rheumatic fever, etc.. by several effects:
Another important therapeutic action, and little known, is the antitumor action of bee venom, as it contains an enzyme (phospholipase A2) that kills tumor cells and not healthy cells because they have a "contraenzima" that inhibits . This antitumor effect attached to the analgesic effect and its immune stimulating effect, provide beneficial properties for cancer.
Other properties are little known apitoxina: its action on glandular dysfunctions because it acts on the pituitary gland that regulates other glands, and their effects as neurostimulator, hypoglycemic, hepatoprotective (liver function improvement), antiallergic, correction of cardiac arrhythmias , regulating blood pressure and cholesterol .....
There is no standardized method for the application of bee venom. Some maintain that the location of the bite is important, since for them the sting acts as a type of acupuncture in combination with the effects of poison, while others indicate otherwise.
The number of stings also varies, from a few to hundreds and can be administered by injection or by live bees.
It has recently been achieved bee venom extraction in the laboratory by applying safer dosage can better control the application site and reducing the risk of infections.
This treatment can cause pain or even cause death if the person is allergic to bee stings, which may produce a shock anaphylactic . Therefore apitherapy centers sensitivity tests are performed prior to initiation of therapy.