Is Medical Mead the New Medical Marijuana?
The honey wine could be a miracle cure.
Mead, the old-timey honey wine you most commonly find at Rennaissance fairs, has experienced a bit of an artisanal resurgence. It certainly hasn’t gone mainstream, but thanks to one man’s research it could soon go medicinal. Microbiologist Tobias Olofsson of Sweden’s Lund University is developing a probiotic mead that he believes will help fight off super-tough, drug-resistant infections.
Though Olofsson is one of the first to brew mead expressly for medical use, he believes that our ancestors owe much of their survival to the consumption of honey and fermented honey beverages. According to Gizmodo, Olofsson found that microorganisms inside of honeybees called lactic acid bacteria (LABs) could be used to eliminate pathogens like MRSA, a notoriously difficult-to-treat infection. The miracle bacteria also shows up in honey, which Olofsson believes ancient humans consumed regularly. He also hypothesizes that these honey gatherers were accidentally making mead by storing the honeycombs in water, which would then ferment and, as a side effect, help keep them alive. To test his theory, Olofsson brewed his own mead from fresh honey a few years back and studied the LAB content. It was jam-packed with curative bacteria—even more than straight honey.
Before he can get any sort of mead business going, Olofsson is performing tests on himself by drinking his own home-brewed probiotic mead and checking his blood for evidence of LABs’ infection-fighting existence. Unfortunately, it'll be a while before you can drop by your local pharmacy for some medical mead.