Honey, Mud, Maggots and other medical marvels: the science behind folk remidies and old wives tales
- By: Andy Conway Morris
Medicine has been a crucial part of human society since we first came down from the trees and started to bang the rocks together. As civilisations grew medical knowledge became concentrated among a few specialists. Many lay people, however, practised and continue to practise medical care, often guided by folk tales, tradition, and intuition. In countries such as South Africa traditional or “Shamanic” healing is part of the state healthcare system.
The Root-Bernsteins attempt to explore the scientific basis of many of these folk cures, examine how they were used in times past, and what, if any, relevance they have to modern practice. The result is a vivid and readable account of traditional medicines, which range from the use of honey for infected wounds to urine drinking for fungal infestations.
The book's strongest element is its ability to show how modern medicine can learn from, adapt to, and incorporate much