Exiles Forum

Lisburn, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland



Large crowd hears of healing properties of honey

Dr Rose Cooper, right, the guest speaker from Cardiff at Dromore Beekeepers' Association together with the Chairman, Les Simms from Hillsborough, left and Anne Wilson, a nurse from Banbridge and Maurice King, a Veterinary Surgeon from Markethill.

THE usual 50 beekeepers who gather in Dromore each month in the High School were joined on Tuesday evening by visitors who went to hear Dr. Rose Cooper, a Reader in Microbiology at the University of Wales Institute Cardiff (UWIC), speak on the healing properties of honey.

Among some interesting facts she told how it is used to clean and heal wounds, remove smells and kill off infection.

Dr Cooper traced the history of the use of honey over thousands of years but concentrated on her own research in Cardiff carried out in the past ten years. She pointed out that all honey has healing properties because of its high sugar concentrations; others release hydrogen peroxide on dilution but that manuka honey, mainly from New Zealand, has an additional antibacterial effect, which is not yet completely understood.

She showed test results and described case studies where manuka honey had been effective where antibiotics and other more conventional wound dressings had not.

She warned against self medication with raw honey but pointed out there were now a number of honey products on the market, both creams and dressings, which were sterile and available on NHS prescription since 2004. .

The talk was followed by a lively discussion by the audience who spoke of their experiences with the healing properties of honey.

Ulster Star