1Unexpected Chemotherapy Discovery
While studying Madagascar periwinkle leaves, which were used as a folk remedy for diabetes in the 1950s, scientists stumbled upon plummeting white blood cell counts. They have since isolated vinblastine and vincristine, effective chemotherapy drugs that have dramatically improved survival rates in leukemia patients.
2. There's a medical procedure known as "fecal transplant," which involves collecting feces, also referred to as stool or poop, from a healthy donor and introducing it into a patient's gastrointestinal tract. This procedure can effectively control an infection called Clostridium difficile.
3. There's a type of bezoar (gastrointestinal stone) that forms from consuming partially unripe persimmons. One of the remedies for this condition is Coca-Cola, which has been found to completely dissolve the bezoar on its own in around half of the cases.
4. When severely depressed patients were treated with psilocybin, all experienced some level of improvement. Two-thirds of them were found to be in remission after one week, and 42% remained free from depression after three months.
5. The anti-diabetic medication metformin is derived from French lilacs. In medieval times, French lilac was used to alleviate the symptoms of a condition that we now recognize as diabetes mellitus.
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6Turmeric vs Alzheimer's
Turmeric, a key ingredient in curry powder, has exhibited surprising effectiveness against Alzheimer's symptoms in numerous studies. Currently, it outperforms all known Alzheimer's drugs. Curcumin, which is found in turmeric in therapeutic doses, is a proven anti-inflammatory. It blocks COX-2 cytokines further upstream than NSAIDs like ibuprofen and COX-2 inhibitors that are linked to heart problems.
7. A laboratory study revealed that honeybee venom, containing the compound "melittin," can destroy two types of difficult-to-treat breast cancer cells. Melittin, on its own, reduces the growth of cancer cells and can be synthesized. At a specific venom concentration, cancer cells were eradicated within one hour with minimal harm to other cells.
8. In ancient times, people would chew on tree bark as a method of pain relief. Willow bark, rich in salicylic acid, a component still utilized in aspirin today, was the source of this remedy.
9. In Japan, there is a practice known as "Forest Bathing," involving long walks in the forest, which is likened to natural aromatherapy. The refreshing sensation experienced when walking through a pine forest is attributed to an anti-inflammatory compound called a-pinene, found in conifers. This compound is used as a bronchodilator in asthma treatment and is abundantly present in marijuana.
10. Malariatherapy involves intentionally infecting a person with malaria as a method of curing them of syphilis. The malaria-induced fevers helped eliminate the syphilis bacteria. After a series of high fever episodes, the bacteria would be eradicated, and the malaria would be treated with quinine.
11Apple Cider Benefits
Apple cider vinegar offers a plethora of health benefits, from preventing indigestion and leg cramps to soothing sore throats and clearing stuffy noses.
12. Platypus milk contains a unique milk protein not identified in any other animal. This protein, dubbed 'Shirley Temple' in tribute to the former child actor's curly hair, showcases distinctive antibacterial properties and is currently under research for its potential to combat superbugs.
13. The marshmallow plant has served as an herbal remedy for various ailments, including sore throats, ulcers, and stimulating breast milk flow. Ironically, although once an ingredient in commercial marshmallows, it is no longer one of their ingredients.
14. Apart from symptomatic management like lozenges, the only proven treatments for the common cold are zinc and honey.
15. Sir Francis Drake created El Draque, the oldest cocktail in history, in 1586, near Havana. A precursor to the mojito, it was initially formulated as a remedy for his ailing crewmen. The ingredients included mint for stomach health, lime to combat scurvy, and chuchuhuasi tree bark soaked in rum, with a touch of sugar for taste.
16Herpes Virus & Cancer
Herpes virus is now employed in cancer treatment. A modified form of herpes has already gained FDA approval for treating melanoma.
17. The Gin & Tonic originated in India to make quinine, a traditional malaria cure, more palatable for the British army stationed in the region.
18. Music therapy can effectively combat depression and aid in trauma healing, and listening to music has been demonstrated to lower heart rate, reduce blood pressure, and alleviate stress levels.
19. A not-yet-approved malaria therapy derived solely from dried leaves of the Artemisia annua plant cured 18 patients with drug-resistant malaria. Remarkably, within just five days, all 18 individuals achieved full recovery.
20. LSD cured a Holocaust survivor of PTSD acquired from Auschwitz, granting him his first nightmare-free sleep in 30 years.
21Unusual Wound Remedy
In 17th-century Poland, a curious remedy for wounds involved using wet bread mixed with spider webs. Surprisingly, this seemingly strange practice worked due to the bread containing fungal spores, including penicillin and naturally occurring antibiotic substances.
22. It's a common practice for dentists to incorporate aquariums into their surroundings because of their stress-reducing and anxiety-alleviating effects. Aquarium therapy has been proven to decrease stress, insomnia, and high blood pressure, achieving outcomes comparable to, or even better than, hypnosis.
23. Bacteriophage therapy as a potential solution to antibiotic-resistant bacteria has found success in Eastern Europe for years. This approach employs cocktails of phage viruses that precisely target specific "problematic" bacteria with remarkable accuracy while being harmless to humans.
24. An investigation in October 2005 explored whether the presence of clowns could alleviate anxiety in children undergoing anesthesia. The approach yielded positive results, yet medical professionals were initially hesitant to introduce clowns into operating rooms. Nevertheless, the study spurred the adoption of distraction therapy.
25. Storing drinking water in copper pots has the remarkable ability to eliminate contaminating bacteria, a knowledge that Indian Ayurvedic medicine has possessed for millennia.