Medieval garlic and bile kills MRSA

Discussion in 'Survival Medicine' started by ditch witch, Apr 7, 2015.


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  1. ditch witch

    ditch witch resident bacon hoarder Site Supporter+

    Thought this was interesting.
    ​Medieval garlic and bile potion kills MRSA superbug - CBS News

    Could a 1,000-year-old concoction be the answer to stopping superbugs?

    Christina Lee, an Anglo-Saxon expert at the University of Nottingham, found the recipe for a remedy for eye infections in a 10th Century medical volume called Bald's Leechbook, one of the earliest known medical textbooks. The instructions were clear -- clear enough to follow today -- so she brought it to a microbiology lab at the university to see if it really works against bacteria.

    In its original Old English, the recipe -- which may date back even further, to the 9th Century -- called for two species of Allium (garlic and onion or leek), wine and bile from a cow's stomach. The topical potion was brewed in a brass vessel, strained and left to sit for nine days.

    The ingredients on their own are known to have antibacterial properties, so it seemed like a good bet.

    "We thought that Bald's eyesalve might show a small amount of antibiotic activity, because each of the ingredients has been shown by other researchers to have some effect on bacteria in the lab," said microbiologist Freya Harrison. "Copper and bile salts can kill bacteria, and the garlic family of plants make chemicals that interfere with the bacteria's ability to damage infected tissues."

    When they performed their tests, they "were absolutely blown away by just how effective the combination of ingredients was."

    They used fresh ingredients according to the original instructions and exposed populations of Staphylococcus aureaus, the antibiotic-resistant bacteria MRSA, to the potion both in lab cultures and on infected wounds in mice. It obliterated the MRSA, killing 999 out of 1,000 bacterial cells.

    "We were genuinely astonished at the results of our experiments in the lab. We believe modern research into disease can benefit from past responses and knowledge, which is largely contained in non-scientific writings," said Lee, adding that remedies like this one "were developed well before the modern understanding of germ theory."

    Steve Diggle of the microbiology lab pointed out that this was also before the invention of the scientific method of carefully planned experimentation.

    "When we built this recipe in the lab I didn't really expect it to actually do anything," he said. "When we found that it could actually disrupt and kill cells in S. aureus biofilms, I was genuinely amazed. Biofilms are naturally antibiotic resistant and difficult to treat so this was a great result."

    Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem around the world. Repeated exposure to antibiotics can lead germs to develop resistance to the drugs, making these life-saving treatments no longer effective. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that drug-resistant bacteria cause 23,000 deaths and 2 million illnesses each year in the United States alone.

    MRSA -- methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus -- is a major problem in hospitals, where it can lead to life-threatening pneumonia and bloodstream infections. There were two superbug outbreaks at Los Angeles hospitals this year, linked to a medical device called a duodenoscope. New research finds thesuperbug is now taking up residence in American homes.

    Last week, the White House announced a five-year plan to fight the danger posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

    "The rise of antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria and the lack of new antimicrobials in the developmental pipeline are key challenges for human health," said Harrison. "There is a pressing need to develop new strategies against pathogens because the cost of developing new antibiotics is high and eventual resistance is likely."

    The multidisciplinary "AncientBiotics" team will present their findings this week at the annual meeting of the Society for General Microbiology. They plan to keep exploring the future potential of potions from the past.

    Article located at ​Medieval garlic and bile potion kills MRSA superbug - CBS News
     
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  2. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    Last edited: May 26, 2016
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  3. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    12 Natural Antibiotics That Our Ancestors Used Instead Of Pills
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    [​IMG] photo © Viktorija – fotolia.com (under license).

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    Antibiotics are commonly regarded as the most over-prescribed of all medicines. Having been massively overused as a “short-term fix”, we now have a huge global problem: Antibiotic resistant bacteria.

    Drug-resistant, difficult-to-treat bacterial infections such as MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphyloccus aureus) and Clostridium difficile have become very resistant to the strongest of antibiotics. This makes sense if you consider it: “Attacking” the bacteria with isolated molecular components literally forces the bacteria to evolve due to their incredibly rapid process of natural selection.

    [​IMG]

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    The world of medicine has been forced to revisit the use of older antimicrobials that had previously been discarded. Here are some of the many things used as antibiotics in ancient times – and the science that shows that the ancients may have known much more about medicine than we give them credit for…

    1: Oregano Oil
    Oregano has been regarded as beneficial against bacterial infections since very old days. Oregano oils and extracts have seen a massive resurgence in use in modern times as natural cold remedies (oregano extract) and lab research has indicated they are powerfully active against food-borne stomach illness bacteria, including the dreaded E. Coli. [1]

    Oregano leaves and extracts have been shown by scientists to have anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties against airway infections, proven in an in-vivo study published in 2014. [2]

    2: Apple Cider Vinegar
    Acetic acid or vinegar, specifally apple cider vinegar, is a popular natural household cleansing agent because of it antibacterial properties. However, it can also be used raw and unfiltered as a skin cleansing agent or a natural antibiotic for the common cold when mixed in with warm water. [3]

    3: Honey
    Honey is one of the oldest known remedies to fight infection. In a recent study, manuka honey was proven to be effective in fighting biofilm bacteria, or strains are known to be resistant to most antibiotics. If you have a cold or cough, try mixing a little bit of honey in warm water and drink it two to three times a day. [4]

    4: Turmeric
    Staphylococcus aureus and E.coli are two of the most common infection-causing bacteria in humans, and are two of the most difficult strains to cure. Turmeric paste was used in a very recent 2015 study that revealed how it was able to inhibit the growth of both strains. [5]

    5: Garlic
    Not only is garlic widely regarded as good for the heart and your cholesterol, it is also thought to be effective as an antibiotic against food poisoning bacteria. In the lab, garlic oil has been demonstrated to inhibit the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, and Bacillus subtilis. [6]

    6: Grapefruit seed extract
    The antibacterial properties of grapefruit seed extract have been studied over the years, discovering how it is able to fight the growth of both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. It is an effective topical antibiotic, which can be used for mild skin abrasions and irritations. [7]

    7: Echinacea
    In traditional medicine, the Echinacea plant has been used in North America for the management of a variety of infections and wounds. Studies have proven the plant’s anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral properties which can fight a variety of infections. [8]

    8: Essential Oils
    Numerous essential oils have been found to have potent antibacterial qualities. These have been known about since ancient times: “Plague doctors” used to wear masks filled with certain herbs as the aromas from these herbs were thought to prevent the plague from being breathed in by the physician.

    Eucalyptus Essential Oil and Tea Tree Essential Oil have been found active against MRSA infections. [9][10]

    9: Extra virgin coconut oil
    A popular beauty regimen is the use of coconut oil to moisturize the skin and prevent acne. But this is backed by science as well! Coconut oil has been found active in vitro against bacterial strains of clostridium and staphylococcus. [11][12] There may even be some antibacterial support for those oil pulling with coconut oil.

    10: Fermented food
    Fermented food like vegetables and dairy are rich in probiotics, healthy bacteria that improve our digestive and immune systems. Regular intake of probiotic-rich food and drink has been suggested to prevent infectious diarrhea and upper airway infections. [13][14]

    11: Silver
    Silver has been known for its antibiotic properties since ancient times. Hippocrates first described its antimicrobial properties in 400 BC. In ancient days, people used to put silver coins in jars of water in the belief in its ability to sterilize them – and it’s thought that one of the reasons people used silver cutlery was that it may have assisted with prevention of food-borne bacteria.

    While these uses may not be considered “proven”, the use of silver as an antibiotic is not just an old folk remedy: Did you know that modern bandages and wound treatments are impregnated with silver particles in order to assist prevention of infection? It’s done on a massive scale: In 2006, the UK’s National Health Services spent about 25 million pounds on silver-containing dressings. This represents about 14% of the total dressings used and about 25% of the overall wound dressing costs. [15] Silver compounds are also used in external preparations as antiseptics.

    Silver and most silver compounds have been found toxic to bacteria, algae, and fungi in vitro. This is not fringe science: The prestigious journal Nature recently reported that silver “could help to deal with the thoroughly modern scourge of antibiotic resistance”. Silver ions have been found to have a “dual mode” of action against bacterial cells: It makes the cell membrane more permeable, and it interferes with the cell’s metabolism. [16]

    Colloidal silver has been found to have potent antimicrobial effects on Staphyloccocus aureus [17] and Proteus bacteria which can cause rheumatoid arthritis. [18]

    Note that silver accumulates in the body and taking it internally can potentially lead to argyria, a condition that turns the body’s tissue grey-blue. [16] However, it’s important to realize that this only occurs in people who ingest or inhale silver in large quantities over a long period.

    Silver has been found to potentiate the activity of a broad range of antibiotics against Gram-negative bacteria in different metabolic states, as well as to restore antibiotic susceptibility to resistant bacterial strains. [19]

    12: Cabbage
    Did you know that this vegetable was once called “doctor of the poor”? Used by sailors to prevent scurvy, it was also used as an ancient remedy for tuberculosis. Cabbage leaves have also long been used as a poultices to treat infected wounds. [20]

    Numerous modern studies have found antibacterial effects from cabbage. Note that raw cabbage is suggested as cooking may diminish these effects. Shredded raw cabbage makes a great salad ingredient.

    Note that cabbage should be avoided by those who have an overactive thyroid gland.

    Further Reading:

    For a deeper discussion of this fascinating topic and lists of even more antibiotic herbs, check out this top five-star rated book on Amazon:

    References:

    [1] Antibacterial activity of oregano essential oil (Origanum heracleoticum L.) against clinical strains of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa] (2012) [The antibacterial activity of oregano essential oil (Origanum heracleoticum L.) against clinical strains of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aerug... - PubMed - NCBI

    [2] Grondona, E., et. al. (2014). Bio-efficacy of the essential oil of oregano (Origanum vulgare Lamiaceae. Ssp. Hirtum). Bio-efficacy of the essential oil of oregano (Origanum vulgare Lamiaceae. Ssp. Hirtum). - PubMed - NCBI

    [3] Bragg, P. (2003). Apple Cider Vinegar Health Care System. isbn:0877905010 - Google Search

    [4] Hammond, E., Donkor, E., & Brown, C. (2014). Biofilm formation of Clostridium difficile and susceptibility to Manuka honey. Biofilm formation of Clostridium difficile and susceptibility to Manuka honey. - PubMed - NCBI

    [5] Afrose, R., et. al. (2015). Antibacterial Effect of Curcuma longa (Turmeric) Against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. Antibacterial Effect of Curcuma longa (Turmeric) Against Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. - PubMed - NCBI

    [6] Guo, Y. (2014). Experimental study on the optimization of extraction process of garlic oil and its antibacterial effects. Experimental study on the optimization of extraction process of garlic oil and its antibacterial effects. - PubMed - NCBI

    [7] Reagor, L., et. al. (2002). The effectiveness of processed grapefruit-seed extract as an antibacterial agent: I. An in vitro agar assay. An Error Occurred Setting Your User Cookie

    [8] Hudson, J. (2012). Applications of the phytomedicine Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower) in infectious diseases. Applications of the phytomedicine Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower) in infectious diseases. - PubMed - NCBI

    [9] Topical application of a new formulation of eucalyptus oil phytochemical clears methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection. (American Journal of Infection Control, 2001) Topical application of a new formulation of eucalyptus oil phytochemical clears methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection. - PubMed - NCBI

    [10] Holistic Nursing: A Handbook for Practice (p.489) Holistic Nursing: A Handbook for Practice - Barbara Montgomery Dossey, Lynn Keegan - Google Books

    [11] Shilling, M., et. al. (2013). Antimicrobial effects of virgin coconut oil and its medium-chain fatty acids on Clostridium difficile. Antimicrobial effects of virgin coconut oil and its medium-chain fatty acids on Clostridium difficile. - PubMed - NCBI

    [12] Tangwatcharin, P.& Khopaibool, P. (2012). Activity of virgin coconut oil, lauric acid or monolaurin in combination with lactic acid against Staphylococcus aureus. Activity of virgin coconut oil, lauric acid or monolaurin in combination with lactic acid against Staphylococcus aureus. - PubMed - NCBI

    [13] Issa, I. & Moucari, R. (2014). Probiotics for antibiotic-associated diarrhea: do we have a verdict? Probiotics for antibiotic-associated diarrhea: do we have a verdict? - PubMed - NCBI

    [14] Hao, Q., Dong, B. & Wu, T. (2015). Probiotics for preventing acute upper respiratory tract infections. Probiotics for preventing acute upper respiratory tract infections. - PubMed - NCBI

    [15] Medical uses of silver - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    [16] “Silver makes antibiotics thousands of times more effective
    ” – Nature, 2013 Silver makes antibiotics thousands of times more effective : Nature News & Comment

    [17] Goggin, R., et. al. (2014). Colloidal silver: a novel treatment for Staphylococcus aureus biofilms? Colloidal silver: a novel treatment for Staphylococcus aureus biofilms? - PubMed - NCBI

    [18] Disaanayake, D., et. al. (2014). Efficacy of some colloidal silver preparations and silver salts against Proteus bacteria, one possible cause of rheumatoid arthritis. Efficacy of some colloidal silver preparations and silver salts against Proteus bacteria, one possible cause of rheumatoid arthritis. - PubMed - NCBI

    [19] Silver Enhances Antibiotic Activity Against Gram-Negative Bacteria (STM, 2013) Silver Enhances Antibiotic Activity Against Gram-Negative Bacteria | Science Translational Medicine

    [20] Cabbage - Herbal Encyclopedia
     
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  4. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

  5. MountainMariner

    MountainMariner Clearly Ambiguous

    You could eat garlic till you feel queasy and then puke it out on a cut? Garlic, bile, done. Lol.
     
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  6. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    a good strategy ! but I think I will hold off until I am desperate on that one @MountainMariner
     
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  7. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    One might also down a quart of rotgut for the same effect, no?
     
  8. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter

    More commercial wound care products are coming available that have silver incorperated into them. I have seen some very good results from their use on a wound that was frequently contaminated with fecal matterial..
     
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  9. MountainMariner

    MountainMariner Clearly Ambiguous

    Wouldn't it be easier to exert extra diligence in keeping fecal matter off your cuts than using silver?
     
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  10. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter

    Think of a 6 inch full thickness wound right next to the anus.. Add to that someone that is unwilling to get cleaned up... Very challenging..
     
  11. MountainMariner

    MountainMariner Clearly Ambiguous

    There is first aid and self aid. This sounds like self aid to me. I would be willing to lend the injured party a mirror though...
     
  12. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    For that one, think bidet.
     
  13. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter

    Or suggest they receive professional assistance and expertise in caring for and healing wounds.. This one has taken over a year to reduce to less than an inch..

    Have seen rectal tubes used to prevent wound contamination.. Would not work in this case.. Wound vac was even considered.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  14. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey Site Supporter

  15. arleigh

    arleigh Goophy monkey

    Colloidal DSCN4242.JPG silver works good enough for me.
     
    Motomom34 likes this.
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