If you are tired of the constant stabbing pain of Rheumatoid Arthritis, how about stinging that pain away with the bee venom therapy (BVT)? If you have been stung by a bee before, you already have firsthand experience with it. Also referred to as Apitherary, BVT is the use of bee venom for medicinal purposes. It has been used since ancient times to treat a whole host of conditions such as arthritis, rheumatism, diabetes, muscular pain, gout, skin conditions and more. Recently it is being used in the treatment of multiple sclerosis, Lyme disease and chronic fatigue syndrome. It is a widely established practice in Asia with many specialist BVT clinics and it was actually legalised in China in 2007 despite having been used there for centuries!
Still do not believe this? Ask Suzanne. As with everyone else using BVT, she does not wait around for random insect attacks. Using a pair of tweezers, she grasp a living, kicking, stinging honey bee and put it on her skin. Today, I have the honour to invite Suzanne to be my guest writer on her RA story and firsthand experience on using BVT for RA. So, keep reading all the way…
“I have had RA for almost 4 years after I had my first child, I am 31 years old, used to be very active and this disease hit me like a rock overnight. It started slowly progressing into very painful state where I had to go into disability for 6 months. I have tried over this years all kinds of supplements, vitamins, therapies; also I have been on Minocin for about 2.5 years and on Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) for 1.5 years (4.5mg) – nothing worked for me well where I can say that I was in remission, my Rheumatoid Factor (RF) was very high. I have even water fasted for 10 days, it gave me great relief but as soon as I started eating again, I started feeling pain again. It is mostly in my hands and feet. I have eliminated a lot of food (gluten, dairy, sugar and lots more) and still no good results. I was very depressed for a while because after trying LDN which did not give me any results, I did not know where to turn and what to do, some days I wished I did not wake up! LDN was kind of my last hope!
Just about a year ago, to be exact on February 23 rd 2012, a friend of mine who works for a pharmacy called me and mentioned that she had a conversation with a very good doctor who has lots of experience behind him, he is from Egypt. When she asked him about RA, he told her that in Egypt, they treat RA with GREAT RESULTS – with stings of honeybees, he said it works like a Miracle! He furthered that lots of people do not only go into remission but cure it! This therapy is called – Apitherapy or Bee Venom Therapy (BVT). As soon as I googled it, there are lots of information that explains what to do and how to do it, what to expect etc. On Youtube, there are lots of stories and testimonials from people who have been doing this therapy. It works great for arthritis, MS and other painful conditions, but what convinced me that no matter where I looked up this information, Arthritis was #1 on the list that bee venom is effective for.
So , I thought it won’t hurt to try since I am already in a lot of pain and there is nothing to lose. I had contacted all the local naturopath clinics but I could not find anyone who practices it (I am from Canada). Then I contacted the local honey bee farms and found a lady who was from God send, because not only she was happy to provide me with bees for free whenever I need, but she is not that far away from me. She has also offered me few sessions where she showed me how to do it, where to put them etc. But the most exciting news was that she used to have an RA and also another autoimmune disease, Sjogren’s syndrom – and she has cured RA, no more signs of it. She looks like a normal person, no deformities, nothing. She has been doing it for at least 3 years, she is around her 70ties right now. She gave me few bee stings, which hurt but it did not last very long, for about 5 mins and gave me lots to take home in a jar. The only thing you have to be careful is the 1st bee. Make sure that you don’t have an allergic reaction! After waiting for about 20 minutes, if everything is ok it is safe to administer bees.
I started off with 4 bees and on some days, I had 10 and other days, up to 20.. You swell up, but not always, and it does get easier, and next day the only thing that drives me nuts is the itching at the place of the sting. The actual sting is not so bad, some days I am screaming out loud, and some days, I am very calm and it is very tolerable. It takes some time to get immune to the bees and get used to the stings, but it is worth it. I rather have this kind of pain than an RA pain! By this day I have been stung probably with 800+ bees, some people need more or less, it depends on each person. For an RA person, I heard it takes about 2000+ bee stings in order to see some permanent relief.
Bee venom comes from the stingers of honey bees which use it in defense of the bee colony. Bee venom is a rich source of enzymes, peptides and biogenic amines. There are at least 18 active components in the venom which have some pharmaceutical properties. Bee venom also contains melittin, a peptide made up of amino acids that functions as an anti-inflammatory. BVT functions by cutting down inflammation, improving your blood circulation and bolstering your immune system and additionally contributing to increased cortisol production.
I have purchased two books , firstly ‘Bees don’t get arthritis – The healing powers of bee stings, honey, pollen and propolis’ by Fred Malone and ‘Health and the honeybee’ by Charles Mraz. Both books were excellent in giving me guidance on how to actually start the BVT.
It has been over 1 year ago today since I have started this therapy and I am a TOTALLY DIFFERENT PERSON! I can almost do everything I did prior to RA (run, go up and down stairs, do physical activities, stay up late, play with my son, go for walks, ski, hike etc…). People have noticed that I look better, I have more energy and I am back to full time job! My family has noticed an improvement in me: better mood, more positive, more energy! Bee Venom is like a natural form of Cortisone but much more stronger and more effective without side effects! I don’t know where I would be today if I did not start this therapy a year ago. I wished I knew about it 4 years ago!!! I feel and see step by step that my body becomes “alive” again, it is warmer, faster and easier in movements, and it is painless most of the days! I also do lots of detoxification and watch what I eat to help my body to recover! I know for me: diet + bees = CURE from this Monster!
BVT is not something that you enter into without a lot of care, thought and consideration but the alternative is a lifetime of taking synthetic steroids with a whole host of nasty side effects and certainly not what I wanted to do when I am only 31. I have created a forum where people talk about BVT and help each other to go through this therapy together: http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/bvt777/. If you are interested and thinking to start or have questions, please join us!
Caius Plinio Secondo said: “Wherever there are bees there is health!”
Most of the research on BVT has come out of Russia, Japan and Europe; and they have shown that bee stings have long been known to ease pain of RA, OA and gout. In a clinical study (Kwon, G.R. Clinical study on treatment of rheumatoid arthritis by bee venom therapy. Proc Congress Kor Med 1998; 130-131) with RA patients, the results showed a 90% positive response, with remarkable improvement in 20% of cases, a good improvement in 50% of cases, and effective improvement in 20% of cases. Only 10% showed no improvement.
Remember, you may not wish to rush right out to your nearest bee farm just yet. Some people are highly allergic to bee venom, and hence, BVT will not be a viable option. That said, I’d like to thank Suzanne again for her kind contribution of her bees story to this blog. If anyone of you out there have also tried BVT before, we love to hear from you.