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On the Trail of Dragons With Blood That Can Save People’s Lives

With the world fast running out of powerful antibiotics as “super” bugs resistant to them take over, researchers are desperately searching every corner of the Earth for new drugs that can fight these superbugs. They’re hopeful they may have found an answer in the blood of the world’s largest lizard, Komodo dragons, according to New Scientist. Komodo blood is loaded with antimicrobial peptides that allow them to eat disease-laden carrion without getting sick.

We’ve known for years that the age of effective antibiotics is coming to an end, primarily because of overuse and abuse of antibiotics for both humans and animals, which ultimately causes disease-causing bacteria to grow resistant to our known drugs. As a result, every year, 700,000 people worldwide die from drug-resistant illnesses like bacterial infections, malaria, HIV/AIDs and tuberculosis.

Clearly, alternatives to antibiotics are needed — and fast. It's estimated that the pharmaceutical industry will need upward of $37 billion over the next decade to replace antibiotics that no longer work. But it’s also important to understand that we already have some very effective, natural treatments for very serious illnesses including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). For example, Bald’s eyesalve — one its main ingredients is garlic — has been shown to kill up to 90 percent of MRSA.

Garlic has antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and antiparasitic properties — and some of the superbugs killed by garlic are resistant to more than 10 different antibiotics. Another unlikely candidate for infection-fighting is horseradish, with clinical evidence indicating that it has antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and antiparasitic properties. Add to that the antifungal, antibacterial and antimicrobial properties of Manuka honey, which lab tests have shown to be a powerful inhibitor of bacteria, and you have a good start toward a natural approach to fighting even the worst superbugs.
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