Role of honey (Madhu) in the management of wounds (Dushta Vrana)
Application of Madhu (honey) is one among the Shashthi Upakrama (sixty treatment modalities) described by Sushruta. Clinical observation has shown its effectiveness in treatment of Dushta Vrana (chronic wounds). We report a case of Dushta Vrana on the anterior aspect of the right leg that was treated successfully with local application of Madhu and Neem (Azadirachata indica) bark decoction.
Madhu has Vranaropak properties as per the principles of the sixty Upakramas of Vrana management described in the Sushruta Samhita. Madhu is believed to act by ‘pacifying’ the three vitiated Doshas, i.e,. Vata, Pitta, and Kapha by multiple actions attributable to its Madhura (sweet) Rasa, Kashaya (astringent) Uparasa, Ruksha (dry) Guna, Sheeta (cold) Virya, Madhura Vipaka, and Sukshma Marga Anusari (ability to permeate in microchannels) Prabhava. Madhura Rasa gives nutrition to the tissue, which helps in granulation tissue formation, while Kashaya Rasa provides Lekhana (scraping) that helps in desloughing, preparing the wound for healing. Thus, Madhu has excellent properties to heal the wound by virtue of its Sodhana (purification), Ropana (healing), and Sandhana (union) actions.
Honey and Health: A Review of Recent Clinical Research
Honey is one of the most appreciated and valued natural products introduced to humankind since ancient times. Honey is used not only as a nutritional product but also in health described in traditional medicine and as an alternative treatment for clinical conditions ranging from wound healing to cancer treatment. The aim of this review is to emphasize the ability of honey and its multitude in medicinal aspects. Traditionally, honey is used in the treatment of eye diseases, bronchial asthma, throat infections, tuberculosis, thirst, hiccups, fatigue, dizziness, hepatitis, constipation, worm infestation, piles, eczema, healing of ulcers, and wounds and used as a nutritious supplement. The ingredients of honey have been reported to exert antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antiproliferative, anticancer, and antimetastatic effects. Many evidences suggest the use of honey in the control and treatment of wounds, diabetes mellitus, cancer, asthma, and also cardiovascular, neurological, and gastrointestinal diseases. Honey has a potential therapeutic role in the treatment of disease by phytochemical, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. Flavonoids and polyphenols, which act as antioxidants, are two main bioactive molecules present in honey. According to modern scientific literature, honey may be useful and has protective effects for the treatment of various disease conditions such as diabetes mellitus, respiratory, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and nervous systems, even it is useful in cancer treatment because many types of antioxidant are present in honey. In conclusion, honey could be considered as a natural therapeutic agent for various medicinal purposes. Sufficient evidence exists recommending the use of honey in the management of disease conditions. Based on these facts, the use of honey in clinical wards is highly recommended.
Sufficient evidence exists recommending the use of honey in the management of disease conditions. Evidence confirming the use of honey in all areas of clinical practice is needed. Studies revealed that the medicinal effect of honey may be due to of its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, apoptotic, and antioxidant properties. This review should provide practitioner with remarkable evidence supporting the use of honey in the medical field. Although some studies exist having tested the efficacy of honey in relation to medical purposes, more studies are needed to cover all medicinal aspects of honey.
Honey as a Complementary Medicine
The beneficial effects of honey on human health have long been recognized. Today, many of those positive effects have been studied to elucidate its mode of action. This review briefly summarizes the best studied features of honey, highlighting it as an appealing alternative medicine. In these reports, the health benefits of honey range from antioxidant, immunomodulatory, and anti-inflammatory activity to anticancer action, metabolic and cardiovascular benefits, prebiotic properties, human pathogen control, and antiviral activity. These studies also support that the honey’s biological activity is mainly dependent on its floral or geographic origin. In addition, some promising synergies between honey and antibiotics have been found, as well as some antiviral properties that require further investigation. Altogether, these studies show that honey is effectively a nutraceutical foodstuff.
Despite the abundant potentially bioactive properties reported above, a comprehensive overview of the mechanisms underlying honey’s health benefits is still under active scrutiny. The studies conducted so far support that each honey’s activity is strongly dependent on its floral or geographic origin. The most investigated properties of honey for its potential usage as an alternative medicine include (1) its antioxidant activity, (2) its ability to induce anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory responses, (3) delaying cancer development and cardiovascular diseases, (4) inhibiting bacterial pathogens by interfering with their pathogenesis potential, (5) its ability to control viral infection, and, finally, (6) improving the health of the gut by acting as a prebiotic agent.