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Saturday, 4 March 2017

Rhinorrhea (runny nose)

Rhinorrhea or rhinorrhoea is a condition where the nasal cavity is filled with a significant amount of mucus fluid. The condition, commonly known as a runny nose, occurs relatively frequently. Rhinorrhea is a common symptom of allergies (hay fever) or certain diseases, such as the common cold. It can be a side effect of crying, exposure to cold temperatures, cocaine abuse or withdrawal, such as from opioids like methadone.
Treatment for rhinorrhea is not usually necessary, but there are a number of medical treatments and preventive techniques available.some people have a chronically runny nose for no apparent reason — a condition called nonallergic rhinitis or vasomotor rhinitis (VMR).


Causes
    Acute sinusitis
    Allergies
    Chronic sinusitis
    Churg-strauss syndrome
    Common cold
    Decongestant nasal spray overuse
    Deviated septum
    Drug addiction
    Dry air
    Granulomatosis with polyangiitis (Wegener's granulomatosis)
    Hormonal changes
    Influenza (flu)
    Lodged object
    Medications
    Nasal polyps
    Nonallergic rhinitis
    Occupational asthma
    Pregnancy
    Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
    Spinal fluid leak
    Tobacco smoke

Signs and symptoms

Rhinorrhea is characterized by an excess amount of mucus produced by the mucous membranes that line the nasal cavities.
The membranes create mucus faster than it can be processed, causing a backup of mucus in the nasal cavities.
As the cavity fills up, it blocks off the air passageway, causing difficulty breathing through the nose.
Air caught in nasal cavities, namely the sinus cavities, cannot be released and the resulting pressure may cause a headache or facial pain.
If the sinus passage remains blocked, there is a chance that sinusitis may result.
If the mucus backs up through the Eustachian tube, it may result in ear pain or an ear infection.
Excess mucus accumulating in the throat or back of the nose may cause a post-nasal drip, resulting in a sore throat or coughing.
Additional symptoms include sneezing, nosebleeds, and nasal discharge.

Treatment

In most cases treatment for rhinorrhea is not necessary since it will clear up on its own—especially if it is the symptom of an infection. For general cases, blowing one's nose can get rid of the mucus buildup. Though blowing may be a quick-fix solution, it would likely proliferate mucosal production in the sinuses, leading to frequent and higher mucus buildups in the nose. Alternatively, saline nasal sprays and vasoconstrictor nasal sprays may also be used, but may become counterproductive after several days of use, causing rhinitis medicamentosa.

In recurring cases, such as those due to allergies, there are medicinal treatments available. For cases caused by histamine buildup, several types of antihistamines can be obtained relatively cheaply from drugstores.

People who prefer to keep clear nasal passages, such as singers, who need a clear nasal passage to perform, may use a technique called "nasal irrigation" to prevent rhinorrhea. Nasal irrigation involves rinsing the nasal cavity regularly with salty water or store bought saline solutions.

Self-care

Until you see your doctor, try these simple steps to relieve symptoms:

    Sniffing and swallowing or gently blowing your nose.
    Avoid known allergic triggers.
    If the runny nose is a persistent, watery discharge, particularly if accompanied by sneezing and itchy or watery eyes, your symptoms may be allergy-related and an over-the-counter antihistamine may help. Be sure to follow the label instructions exactly.
    For babies and small children, use a soft rubber suction bulb to gently remove any secretions.

Try these measures to relieve postnasal drip — when excess mucus accumulates in the back of your throat:

    Avoid common irritants such as cigarette smoke and sudden humidity changes.
    Drink plenty of water.
    Try nasal saline sprays or rinses

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Trachoma


Trachoma is the world’s leading cause of preventable blindness of infectious origin. Caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis, trachoma is easily spread through direct personal contact, shared towels and cloths, and flies that have come in contact with the eyes or nose of an infected person. If left untreated, repeated trachoma infections can cause severe scarring of the inside of the eyelid and can cause the eyelashes to scratch the cornea (trichiasis). In addition to causing pain, trichiasis permanently damages the cornea and can lead to irreversible blindness.

CAUSES
Trachoma is caused by repeated conjunctival infection with C trachomatis. Important individual-level risk factors for active trachoma include
1. having siblings with active disease,
2. having a dirty face, and
3. crowded sleeping arrangements.
At the community level, adequate water access for personal hygiene, sanitation, and fly control determine the risk of endemic trachoma.

W.H.O. CLASSIFICATION

The World Health Organization recommends a simplified grading system for trachoma. The Simplified WHO Grading System is summarized below:
  • Trachomatous inflammation, follicular (TF)—Five or more follicles of >0.5 mm on the upper tarsal conjunctiva
  • Trachomatous inflammation, intense (TI)—Papillary hypertrophy and inflammatory thickening of the upper tarsal conjunctiva obscuring more than half the deep tarsal vessels
  • Trachomatous scarring (TS)—Presence of scarring in tarsal conjunctiva.
  • Trachomatous trichiasis (TT)—At least one ingrown eyelash touching the globe, or evidence of epilation (eyelash removal)
  • Corneal opacity (CO)—Corneal opacity blurring part of the pupil margin
CLINICAL PRESENTATION/SIGNS 


Active trachoma is characterized by a mucopurulent keratoconjunctivitis. The conjunctival surface of the upper eyelid shows a follicular and inflammatory response. The cornea may have limbal follicles, superior neovascularization (pannus), and punctate keratitis. Infection with C trachomatis concurrently occurs in other extraocular mucous membranes, commonly the nasopharynx, leading to a nasal discharge.

Follicular trachoma
Trachomatous inflammation, follicular (TF), is the Trachomatous inflammation, follicular (TF), is the presence of 5 or more follicles (each at least 0.5 mm in diameter) on the central part of the upper tarsal conjunctiva.Follicular trachoma indicates active disease.This form is most commonly found in children, with a peak prevalence in those aged 3-5 years. The prevalence rapidly decreases in school-aged children as they leave the pool of re-infection (i.e. their family childcare group).
Follicles are germinal centers that primarily consist of lymphocytes and monocytes.The presence and involution of follicles at the limbus (corneoscleral border) give rise to the pathognomonic lesion of past active trachoma.

Intense inflammatory trachoma
Trachomatous inflammation, intense (TI) is pronoun Trachomatous inflammation, intense (TI) is pronounced inflammatory thickening of the upper tarsal conjunctiva that obscures more than one half the normal deep tarsal vessels.Intense inflammatory trachoma is defined as pronounced inflammatory thickening of the upper tarsal conjunctiva that obscures more than one half of the normal deep tarsal vessels.The cause is an intense inflammatory response. Like follicular trachoma, intense inflammatory trachoma indicates active disease.The normally thin tarsal conjunctiva develops a velvety thickening.Papillae are visible under slit lamp examination.Intense inflammatory trachoma indicates an increased potential for significant conjunctival scarring and, hence, a higher ultimate risk of blinding disease.Surveying the prevalence of intense inflammatory trachoma in children can help in predicting the risk of future blinding trachoma in that cohort of children.

Trachomatous scarring
Trachomatous conjunctival scarring (TS) is the pre Trachomatous conjunctival scarring (TS) is the presence of easily visible scars in the tarsal conjunctiva.Trachomatous scarring indicates past inflammatory disease and a risk of future trichiasis. The more severe the scarring, the higher the risk of subsequent trichiasis.This form may be associated with the development of dry eye syndrome, but chronic, low-grade bacterial conjunctivitis and dacryocystitis may also lead to a weeping eye.
Trichiasis

Trachomatous Trichiasis
Trichiasis is defined as at least 1 eyelash rubs on the eyeball or evidence of recent removal of in-turned eyelashes.This is a potentially blinding lesion that can lead to corneal opacification.Trichiasis is due to subconjunctival fibrosis over the tarsal plate that leads to lid distortion.Some vision can be restored with the successful correction of trichiasis.

Corneal opacity
Corneal opacity is defined as easily visible corneal opacity over the pupil that is so dense that it blurs at least part of the pupillary margin when it is viewed through the opacity.Corneal opacity or scarring reflects the prevalence of vision loss and blindness resulting from trachoma.This condition includes pannus, epithelial vascularization, and infiltration only if it involves the central cornea.

TREATMENT
The key to the treatment of trachoma is the SAFE strategy developed by the WHO. The surgical ("S") component of this strategy is described in Surgical Care . Antibiotics ("A"), facial cleanliness ("F"), and environmental improvement ("E") are described in this section.

Antibiotic therapy

The WHO recommends 2 antibiotics for trachoma control: oral azithromycin and tetracycline eye ointment. Azithromycin eye drops have also been shown to be very effective.Azithromycin is better than tetracycline, but it is more expensive.National trachoma control programs in a number of countries are fortunate to be beneficiaries of a philanthropic donation of azithromycin.

Azithromycin is the drug of choice because it is easy to administer as a single oral dose. Its administration can be directly observed. Therefore, compliance is higher than with tetracycline and can actually be measured, whereas, with the home administration of tetracycline, the level of compliance is unknown.Azithromycin has high efficacy and a low incidence of adverse effects. When adverse effects occur, they are usually mild; gastrointestinal upset and rash are the most common adverse events.Infection with C trachomatis occurs in the nasopharynx; therefore, patients may reinfect themselves if only topical antibiotics are used.Beneficial secondary effects of azithromycin include its treatment of genital, respiratory, and skin infections.

Facial cleanliness
Epidemiologic studies and community-randomized trials have shown that facial cleanliness in children reduces both the risk and the severity of active trachoma.To be successful, health education and promotion activities must be community based and require considerable effort.

Environmental improvement
General improvements in personal and community hygiene are almost universally associated with a reduction in the prevalence—and eventually the disappearance—of trachoma. This is true not only in Europe, the Americas, and Australia but also in Africa and Asia.Environmental improvement activities are the promotion of improved water supplies and improved household sanitation, particularly methods for safe disposal of human feces.These activities should be prioritized.The flies that transmit trachoma preferentially lay their eggs on human feces lying exposed on the soil. Controlling fly populations by spraying insecticide is difficult. Studies on the impact of fly control on trachoma have had variable results. Trials undertaken to evaluate the installation of pit latrines suggested that the prevalence of trachoma was reduced but failed to demonstrate a statistically significant effect.

Surgical Care
Eyelid surgery to correct trichiasis is important in people with trichiasis, who are at high-risk for trachomatous visual impairment and blindness. Eyelid surgery to correct entropion and/or trichiasis may prevent blindness in individuals at immediate risk.Eyelid rotation limits the progression of corneal scarring. In some cases, it can result in a slight improvement in visual acuity, probably due to restoration of the visual surface and reductions in ocular secretions and blepharospasm.The W.H.O. has produced a training manual on the bilamellar tarsal rotation procedure.Details are as follows:

    This procedure involves a full-thickness incision of the scarred lid and external rotation of the distal margin by using 3 sutures.
    In regions where access to ophthalmologists is limited, well-trained and well-supported health workers can perform bilamellar tarsal rotation.
    Results of randomized clinical trials have confirmed the superiority of this method over other techniques.
    Even after successful surgery, patients remain at risk for recurrence. Therefore, long-term follow-up care and intermittent screening are important after surgery.
    Recurrence rates vary greatly between surgeons. Ongoing audit is an essential element of trichiasis surgery programs.

PREVENTIONThe World Health Organization has targeted trachoma for elimination by 2020 through an innovative, multi-faceted public health strategy known as S.A.F.E.Surgery to correct the advanced, blinding stage of the disease (trichiasis),Antibiotics to treat active infection,Facial cleanliness and,
Environmental improvements in the areas of water and sanitation to reduce disease transmission.Facial cleanliness and environmental improvement are major components of the SAFE strategy.Many regard the lack of facial cleanliness in children as the key factor for the persistence of trachoma.

PROGNOSIS
The prognosis depends on the severity of the disease at the time of treatment, the appropriateness of the treatment, and the risk of reinfection.Patients in whom early disease is treated appropriately have an excellent prognosis.Severe disease may be stabilized, but the patient's vision may not improve once corneal scarring has developed.Reinfection worsens the prognosis.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

what to do with Witlow

A whitlow is a painful and highly contagious infection on the fingers caused by the herpes simplex virus. It is also known as herpetic whitlow or paronychia.
There are two types of herpes simplex virus—type 1 and type 2—and both can cause herpetic whitlow. A whitlow can occur when broken skin on your finger comes in direct contact with body fluids infected with the herpes simplex virus. These body fluids may come from you or someone else. The first bout of whitlow is usually the most troublesome, with recurrences usually being lesser in pain and length. Since about 20 to 50% of cases are recurrences, prevention is key

TO DIAGNOSE WITLOW :

1. Recall if you've had contact with someone who has herpes. Herpes simplex virus is very common and highly contagious.
 HSV -1 commonly affects the face, and often causes cold sores (painful blisters on the lips). HSV-2 tends to cause painful genital blisters.HSV-1 can spread through kissing or oral sex, while
 HSV-2 can spread through skin to skin contact with infected genitals.
Be aware that HSV can have a long dormant period. You may have contracted herpes long ago, but the virus may have stayed dormant in the nerve cells where it resides. Stress and lack of immunity (getting sick) are common triggers for activation of the virus from the dormant phase.

2. Look for early symptoms. In the "prodrome" or early phase of any disease, symptoms indicate the onset of a condition. For whitlow, these symptoms usually appear 2 to 20 days after initial exposure, and include:
-Fever
-Fatigue
-Unusual pain
-Numbness
-Tingling in the area

3. Observe more typical whitlow symptoms in the disease phase.Once the initial prodrome phase has passed, you will see far more specific symptoms that point clearly to whitlow:
-Swelling, redness, and rash, with fluid filled vesicles around the area.
-The vesicles may rupture, and a white, clear, or bloody fluid will come out.
-These vesicles may merge and take on a black/brown color.
-Ulceration, or a break in the skin, may develop later.
-Symptoms can resolve from anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks

4. Get a formal medical diagnosis. Since whitlow is a more of a clinical diagnosis, the medical staff might not order any additional tests. Instead, the doctor will take your symptoms and medical history — including an HSV diagnosis — into consideration to diagnose whitlow. They may also take a tube of your blood to order a complete blood count (CBC) with a differential (a count of your white blood cells). This will let them see if you have enough immune cells to fight infections, or if you have an underlying immune dysfunction that causes reoccurring infections.
The doctor may want to test for herpes if you haven't been diagnosed with it. They may analyze your blood for herpes antibodies, order a PCR test (for the detection of herpes DNA), and/or order a viral culture (to see if actual herpes virus is growing from your blood).

INITIAL TREATMENT 


  1.  Take antiviral medication. If whitlow is diagnosed within 48 hours after the symptoms start, the doctor can prescribe antiviral medication to you.The medicine might be topical (a cream) or oral (pills), but will lessen the severity of the infection and promote quicker healing. Thus, it's crucial that you seek immediate medical advice.Commonly prescribed medications include topical acyclovir 5%, oral acyclovir, oral Famciclovir or valacyclovir.Take the medications as advised by your doctor or pharmacist or nurse consultant.Dosages will be adjusted for children, but the treatments will remain the same.
  2. Take precautions to prevent spreading the infection. Since the virus can spread through contact, your healthcare provider may advise you not to touch others, or even to avoid yourself with the infected finger. Specifically avoid touching body parts that contain fluids or bodily secretions. These include the eyes, mouth, tongue, genitals, ears, and breast.If you wear contacts, don't wear them until the infection has resolved. Touching the contacts, then inserting them into your eyes could infect the eye.
  3. Wrap the infected area. Your healthcare provider may wrap the infected area with a bandage, cloth, or any form of dry wrap with medical tape. You can do this easily at home, too, by buying the bandages or wraps from your local pharmacy. To keep the wrap fresh, change it daily. To be extra safe, your doctor may advise you to both wrap the infected area and wear a glove over it.
  4. Monitor children closely. It can be difficult enough to be conscious of your hands as an adult, but children often find it quite difficult. You don't want them sucking on infected fingers, touching their eyes, or any other areas of the body that contain or carry bodily fluids. Even after wrapping the infected area, watch them closely to make sure everything is as it should be.
  5. Get pain medication if necessary.The doctor may provide or advise you to use over the counter pain medication like Advil, Tylenol, ibuprofen or aspirin. They should ease pain while the infection heals by reducing inflammation to the area. If you saw a doctor within 48 hours of noticing the symptoms, the doctor might not recommend anything beyond pain medication.Children and teenagers with viral infections are advised not to take aspirin. There's a risk of developing a multi-organ fatal condition known as Reye’s syndrome.Seek expert medical advice before taking over the counter pain meds for viral infections.Take all medications as described either by your healthcare provider or on the label. Be careful not to exceed the maximum daily dose.
  6. Ask the doctor to test for bacterial infection.If you try to burst or drain the vesicles on your finger on your own, you give debris and bacteria opportunity to invade. Whitlow is a viral infection, but you can compound the issue with a bacterial infection (this can appear dark, have an odor, and may have a whitish pus discharge).The doctors will order a complete blood count with differential (to detect immune cells or white blood cells) if they suspect bacterial infection.The white blood cells will be high if you have a bacterial infection.They may reorder this test after you've completed your antibiotic course to check for normal levels of white blood cells. This isn't always necessary if symptoms have calmed and they have no further suspicion.


Tuesday, 24 November 2015

HEALTH BENEFITS/NUTRITIONAL BENEFITS OF DATES

     Botanically; they are the fruits grow on the palm tree belonging to the family of Arecaceae, in the genus: Phoenix, and scientifically named as Phoenix dactylifera. The tree is believed to originate in the lands on the banks of Nile and Euphrates Rivers of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. Date palm is now grown extensively for its edible fruits under warmer climates across all the continents.
     Dates ripen in four stages, which are known throughout the world by their Arabic names kimri (unripe), khlal (full-size, crunchy), rutab (ripe, soft), tamr (ripe, sun-dried).
     A date palm cultivar, known as Judean date palm is renowned for its long-lived orthodox seed, which successfully sprouted after accidental storage for 2000 years.This particular seed is presently reputed to be the oldest viable seed but the upper survival time limit of properly stored seeds remains unknown.Fossil records show that the date palm has existed for at least 50 million years.


HEALTH BENEFITS/NUTRITIONAL BENEFITS OF DATES

Constipation: Dates are often categorized as a laxative food. This is why dates are so frequently eaten by people suffering from constipation. In order to achieve the desired laxative effect of dates, you should soak them in water over night. Then, eat the soaked dates in the morning like syrup to get the most optimal results. Dates have high levels of soluble fiber, which is essential in promoting healthy bowel movements and the comfortable passage of food through the intestinal tract, which can relieve symptoms of constipation.

Bone Health and Strength: The significant amounts of minerals found in dates make it a super food for strengthening bones and fighting off painful and debilitating diseases like osteoporosis. Dates contain selenium, manganese, copper, and magnesium, all of which are integral to healthy bone development and strength, particularly as people begin to age and their bones gradually weaken. So, eat your dates and give a boost to your bones!

Intestinal Disorders: The nicotine content in dates is thought to be beneficial for curing many kinds of intestinal disorders. Continuous intake of dates helps to inhibit growth of the pathological organisms and thus, they help stimulate the growth of friendly bacteria in the intestines. In terms of digestive issues, dates contain those insoluble and soluble fibers, as well as many beneficial amino acids which can stimulate the digestion of food and make it more efficient, meaning that more nutrients will be absorbed by the digestive tract and enter your body for proper usage.

Anemia: Dates have a high mineral content, which is beneficial for many different health conditions, but their impressive levels of iron make them a perfect dietary supplement for people suffering from anemia. The high level of iron balances out the inherent lack of iron in anemic patients, increasing energy and strength, while decreasing feelings of fatigue and sluggishness.

Allergies: One of the most interesting facets of dates is the presence of organic sulfur in them. This is not a very common element to find in foods, but it does have a worthwhile amount of health benefits, including the reduction of allergic reactions and seasonal allergies. According to a study done in 2002, organic sulfur compounds can have a positive impact on the amount of suffering people experience from SAR (Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis), which affects approximately 23 million people in the United States alone. Dates are a great way to somewhat stem the effects of those seasonal allergies through its contributions of sulfur to the diet.

Weight Gain: Dates should be included as a  part of a healthy diet. They consist of sugar, proteins and many essential vitamins. If dates are consumed with cucumber paste, you can also keep your weight at a normal, balanced level, rather than over-slimming. One kilogram of dates contains almost 3,000 calories, and the calories in dates are sufficient to meet the daily requirements for a human body. Of course, you should not eat just dates throughout the day. If you are thin and slim and want to increase your weight, or if you are trying to build your muscles to impress some girl, or you have become weak due to a serious medical problem – you need to eat dates!

Energy Booster: Dates are high in natural sugars like glucose, fructose, and sucrose. Therefore, they are the perfect snack for an immediate burst of energy. Many people around the world use dates for a quick afternoon snack when they are feeling lethargic or sluggish.

Nervous System Health: The vitamins present in dates make it an ideal boost to nervous system health and functionality. Potassium is one of the prime ingredients in promoting a healthy and responsive nervous system, and it also improves the speed and alertness of brain activity. Therefore, dates are a wonderful food source for people as they begin to age and their nervous system becomes sluggish or unsupported, as well as for people who want to keep their mind sharp.

Healthy Heart: Dates are quite helpful in keeping your heart healthy. When they are soaked for the night, crushed in the morning and then consumed, they have been shown to have a positive effect on weak hearts. Dates are also a rich source of potassium, which studies have shown to reduce the risk of stroke and other heart related diseases. Furthermore, they are suggested as a healthy and delicious way to reduce the levels of LDL cholesterol in the body, which is a major contributing factor heart attacks, heart disease, and stroke. Therefore, when taken twice a week, dates can seriously improve the overall health of the heart.

Sexual Weakness: Studies have shown that dates are even beneficial for increasing sexual stamina. Soak a handful of dates in fresh goat’s milk over night, then grind them in the same milk with a mixture of cardamom powder and honey. This mixture becomes a very useful tonic for increasing sexual endurance and reducing sterility caused by various sexual disorders. The science behind this phenomenon is largely due to traditional usage which stimulated formal research. In 2006, Bahmanpour studied the effects of date palms and their oil on sexual functioning and found that the high levels of estradiol and flavonoid components of dates are what increase sperm count and motility, as well as promoting increased testes size and weight. So, if you are looking for a masculine boost, eat some dates, because they are a great natural aphrodisiac!

DatesNight Blindness: The benefits of dates are extensive, and are commonly employed to fight off various conditions affecting the ear, nose, and throat. When the leaves of the date palm are ground into a paste and rubbed on and around the eyes, or when dates are ingested orally, it has been shown to reduce the frequency of night blindness, and this solution is commonly used in rural areas where dates grow as an alternative medicine.

Intoxication: Dates are commonly used as a remedy for alcoholic intoxication. Dates provide quick relief and have a sobering effect in case you feel as though have consumed an uncomfortable amount of alcohol. They can also be used the following morning to prevent severe hangovers. Again, they should be rubbed and soaked overnight for the best results.

Diarrhea: Ripe dates contain potassium, which is known as an effective way of controlling diarrhea. They are also easy to digest, which further helps alleviate the unpredictable nature of chronic diarrhea. The soluble fiber in dates can also help relieve diarrhea, by providing bulk to the bowel movements and promoting normal, healthy functioning of the excretory system.

Abdominal Cancer: Research has pointed towards dates being a legitimate way to reduce the risk and impact of abdominal cancer. They work as a useful tonic for all age groups, and in some cases, they work better than traditional medicines, and are natural, so they don’t have any negative side effects on the human body. They can be quickly and easily digested for a quick boost of energy.

Although dates carry tremendous nutritional values, great care should be taken in their selection because their surface is very sticky, which often attracts various impurities. Therefore, you should only consume dates that are processed and packaged properly. Also, make sure to wash them thoroughly before you eat them, as this will help remove the impurities present on the surface.

A Healthy Pregnancy and Delivery – Further adding to the health benefits of dates, one study performed by researchers at the University of Science and Technology set out to discover how the date fruit impacted labor parameters and delivery outcomes. After studying 69 women for a year and 1 month, the researchers found that “the consumption of date fruit in the last 4 weeks before labour significantly reduced the need for induction and augmentation of labour, and produced a more favorable  but non-significant, delivery outcome. The results warrant a randomised controlled trial.”CLICK TO READ MORE 

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Monday, 16 November 2015

WONDERS OF HONEY


Honey’s scientific super powers contribute to its vastly touted health benefits for the whole body. The healthy natural sweetener offers many nutritional benefits depending on its variety. Raw honey is the unpasteurized version of commonly used honey and only differs in its filtration, which helps extend its shelf life. A tablespoon of raw honey contains 64 calories, is fat-free, cholesterol-free, and sodium-free, says the National Honey Board. Its composition is roughly 80 percent carbohydrates, 18 percent water, and two percent vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.

Typically, honey is sweet but can be cruel to infants. Spores of Clostridium botulinum bacteria — found in dirt and dust, which can contaminate honey — may lead to infant botulism and produce a toxin inside the body that can cause muscle weakness and breathing problems. It's often advised that you wait until the child is 12 months of age to give infants honey; consumption is safe for older adults and kids, since they have a mature digestive system that can handle the spores.

Consume honey responsibly and reap the numerous health benefits of this liquid gold.

1. Alleviates Allergies
Honey’s anti-inflammatory effects and ability to soothe coughs has led to the belief it can also reduce seasonal allergy symptoms. Although there are no clinical studies proving its efficacy, Dr. Matthew Brennecke, a board certified naturopathic doctor practicing at the Rocky Mountain Wellness Center in Fort Collins, Colo., told Medical Daily in an email, "A common theory is that honey acts like a natural vaccine." It contains small amounts of pollen, which if the body is exposed to small amounts of it, it can trigger an immune response that produces antibodies to the pollen. "After repeated exposure, you should build up these antibodies and the body should become accustomed to their presence so that less histamine is released, resulting in a lesser allergic response."

2. Nature's Energy Booster
The benefits of honey go beyond its great taste. A great natural source of carbohydrates which provide strength and energy to our bodies, honey is known for its effectiveness in instantly boosting the performance, endurance and reduce muscle fatigue of athletes. Its natural sugars play an important role in preventing fatigue during exercise. The glucose in honey is absorbed by the body quickly and gives an immediate energy boost, while the fructose is absorbed more slowly providing sustained energy. It is known that honey has also been found to keep levels of blood sugar fairly constant compared to other types of sugar. So, to experience these health benefits of honey, here are a few tips for you:
(i).  Next time before you go for a workout, take a spoon of honey to enable you to go for the extra mile.
(ii). If you are feeling low and lethargic in the morning, instead of reaching out for a can of carbonated energy drink , try honey. Spread it on hot toast or replace the sugar in your tea with it for a refreshing surge of energy.

3. Boosts Memory
Honey’s ability to help the body absorb calcium, according to Brennecke, helps aid brain health. The brain needs calcium in order to process thought and make decisions. “As our populations continue to get older and older, the likelihood of dementia setting in because of poor intake of vitamins and minerals continues to get higher and higher,” he said.
The sweet nectar is loaded in antioxidants that may help prevent cellular damage and loss within the brain. A 2011 study published in Menopause found a daily spoonful of Malaysian honey may boost postmenopausal women’s memory, which can provide an alternative therapy for the hormone-related intellectual decline. After four months of taking 20 grams of honey a day, the women were more likely to have better short-term memory than their counterparts who took hormone pills.

4. Treats Wounds And Burns
Honey is a natural antibiotic that can act both internally and externally. It can be used as a conventional treatment for wounds and burns by disinfecting wounds and sores from major species of bacteria such as methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). A 2005 study published in the British Journal of Surgery found all but one of patients who suffered from wounds and leg ulcers showed remarkable improvement after applying a topical application of honey.

Dr. Diane Radford, a breast surgical oncologist in St. Louis, Mo., told Medical Daily in an email, Manuka honey has antibacterial properties for wound healing. “The precursor for the active antibacterial agent methylglyoxal (MGO) comes from the nectar of mānuka trees. A specialized research unit at the University of Waikato is looking into the conversion to the active product,” she said.

5. Cough Suppressant

Honey can be the all-natural cure when it comes to pesky colds. A persistent cough that won’t go away can easily be remedied with two teaspoons of honey, according to a 2012 study published in the journal Pediatrics. Children between the ages of 1 and 5 with nighttime cough due to colds coughed less frequently when they received two teaspoons of honey 30 minutes before bed.

The golden liquid’s thick consistency helps coat the throat while the sweet taste is believed to trigger nerve endings that protect the throat from incessant coughing. Honey is believed to be as effective as the common cough suppressant ingredient dextromethorphan. It can be used in treating upper respiratory tract infections.

6. Sleep Aid

Honey can be a health aid for sleepless nights. Similar to sugar, honey can cause a rise in insulin and release serotonin — a neurotransmitter that improves mood and happiness. “The body converts serotonin into melatonin, a chemical compound that regulates the length and the quality of sleep,”

Moreover, honey also contains several amino acids, including tryptophan that is commonly associated with turkey. Honey’s steady rise in insulin, according to Brennecke, causes the tryptophan in honey to enter the brain, where it’s then converted into serotonin and then into melatonin, which is a sleep aid. This hormone is responsible for regulating sleep and wake cycles.

7. Treats Dandruff

Honey can bring temporary relief to the scalp by targeting dandruff. In a study, Skin lesions healed within two weeks and patients even showed an improvement in hair loss. The patients did not relapse even after six months of use.
Thanks to honey's antibacterial and antifungal properties, it can also treat seborrheic dermatitis and dandruff, which are often caused by an overgrowth of fungus. Moreover, “honey also has anti-inflammatory properties, which address the redness and itching on the scalp,” Brennecke said.


YOUR TURN
WHATS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH HONEY......KINDLY LEAVE YOUR OPINION BELOW...