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Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Honey, the Functional Food For the Treatment of Diseases Associated with Chronic Inflammation

Inflammation is a natural response of the immune system in which the white blood cells of the first line of defense try to protect the body by destroying the foreign pathogens which try to enter the body through wound or tissues damage.

During the acute phase of infection, overproduction of proinflammatory cytokines may cause damage to nearby healthy cells, leading to the formation of scars.

Most cases of infection are stopped at the acute phase of infection as the immune system successfully kills off all invaders in a brief battle.

Some researchers suggested the immune system has evolved to protect our body over thousands of years with an aim to kill off all pathogens within a period in the range of 3 to 8 weeks. Otherwise, it will adapt to the new change, leading to chronic inflammation.

In other words, chronic inflammation happens when the immune response lingers, causing low-grade inflammation. Chronic inflammation over time may damage the body tissues and organs.

In some cases, the infection may be latent in which the pathogen remains within the body for a long time without producing any symptoms, such as the hepatitis virus.

Diseases associated with chronic inflammation include cancer, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, type 2 diabetes, and obesity.

Honey, the rich golden liquid is the miraculous product made by bees using nectar from flowers.

The liquid is considered one of the healthy food for replacing the use of white sugar and artificial sweetener by many people.

With an aim to find a potential compound for the treatment of diseases associated with chronic inflammation, researchers at the Universiti Sains Malaysia investigated the anti-inflammatory property of honey among smokers.

The randomized, controlled, the open-label trial included 10 New Zealand white rabbits sensitized twice with a mixture of OVA and aluminum hydroxide on days 1 and 14 to induce chronic inflammation.

The honey was given from day 23 to day 25 at two different doses (25% (v/v) and 50% (v/v) of honey diluted in sterile phosphate buffer saline.

In the aerosolized honey as a rescue agent group, animals were euthanized on day 28 and in the preventive group, animals were further exposed to aerosolized OVA for 3 days starting from day 28 and euthanized on day 31.

According to the assays, aerosolized honey protected the structural changes of the epithelium, mucosa, and submucosal regions of the airway induced by OVA.

Moreover, the aerosolized honey treatment also reduced the number of airway inflammatory cells in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and inhibited the goblet cell hyperplasia in tested rabbits.

The results strongly suggested that aerosolized honey effectively treats and manage asthma in rabbits.

In order to reveal more information about honey anti chronic inflammatory activity, researchers examined the 12-week honey oral supplementation on plasma inflammatory markers.

The study included a total of 32 non-smokers and 64 chronic smokers from Quit Smoking Clinic and Health Campus, Universiti Sains Malaysia with Smoker randomized into 2 groups: smokers with the honey group that received Malaysian Tualang honey (20 g/day daily for 12 weeks) and smokers without the honey group.

According to the blood sample collected from the subjects before the treatment, smokers had significantly higher high sensitive C-reactive protein compared to non-smokers.

Treatment with aerosolized honey showed to reduce the number of airway inflammatory cells in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and inhibit the goblet cell hyperplasia.

Compared to the increase of proinflammatory cytokines (tumor necrosis factor-α) and high sensitive C-reactive protein in smokers group, honey treatment significantly increased the levels of tumor necrosis factor-α) but reduced levels of sensitive C-reactive protein at post-intervention than at pre-intervention.

In other words, honey treatment inhibited the progression of inflammation by reduced proinflammatory cytokines levels of sensitive C-reactive protein but increased tumor necrosis factor-α).

Taken altogether, honey may be considered a functional remedy for the treatment of chronic inflammation with no side effects, pending to the confirmation of large sample size and multicenter human study.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it's news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada - Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) Effects of honey supplementation on inflammatory markers among chronic smokers: a randomized controlled trial by Ghazali WS1, Romli AC1, Mohamed M. (PubMed)
(2) Inhalation of honey reduces airway inflammation and histopathological changes in a rabbit model of ovalbumin-induced chronic asthma by Kamaruzaman NA, Sulaiman SA, Kaur G, Yahaya B. (PubMed)

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