Nelson Honey and Marketing, A New Zealand company, says that their bee sting venom honey takes the sting out of arthritis. They claim that just two teaspoons a day of their honey that contains venom which has been milked from honeybees contains strong anti-inflammatory properties that eases the inflammation and pain of arthritic joints. This “hair of the dog” approach to pain relief has believers around the world clamoring for bee sting venom honey for arthritis symptoms. Evidence of its effectiveness is growing as more formal studies are conducted. Studies have shown that in addition to reducing inflammation, bee venom contains a potent antibiotic.
To make the venom honey, apis mellifera honeybees are milked for their venom with electrical milking machines. The machines emit an impulse that stimulates the worker bees to sting a piece of latex rubber sheet placed over a collector jar. The venom is then dried and later added to the Manuka honey and sold to those seeking its relief. This special Manuka honey and bee sting venom blend is sold under the Nectar Ease label. Arthritis sufferers are advised start with a smaller dose of the mixture—about a quarter of a teaspoon a day, and then gradually increase the dosage to one or two teaspoons if needed.
The company strongly urges anyone with an allergy to honey or bee venom to consult their doctor before using their bee sting venom honey for arthritis, and that it should never be fed to infants under two years old. Children under two should never consume honey, because they are especially susceptible to botulism spores that are sometimes found in honey, and that can kill infants. Older children and adults are not affected by the spores, and those who are not known to be allergic to bee venom or honey and have the approval of their doctors can safely use the product.
In addition to being an effective treatment for arthritis, bee venom honey has also been used by patients with other inflammatory conditions that cause chronic pain, such as CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) and Fibromyalgia. Among the chemical components of natural bee venom, its primary component, Milittin, is said to have stronger antibacterial properties than penicillin, and also reduces inflammation by stimulating the body to produce cortisone. Another component of bee venom, MCDP, significantly reduces inflammation, as does the apamin in the venom. Apamin also acts as a natural pain killer.
Professor Alan Silman, medical director of the non-profit Arthritis Research Campaign says that it is difficult to determine exactly how bee sting venom honey may relieve arthritis, because the evidence he has seen has been purely anecdotal. But while medical use of bee venom for arthritis and other conditions is still controversial, at least one large scientific study has shown that Manuka honey from New Zealand can kill superbugs when used in conjunction with traditional antibiotics, and the evidence that bee venom honey is a virtual medical miracle is growing.