In yet another fascinating example of the wisdom of nature, entrepreneurs are now manufacturing and selling vastly superior wound bandages made from chitosan, a substance found in the shells of shrimp, crabs, and other crustaceans. Chitosan, of course, is very popular as a fat-absorbing nutritional supplement. The chitosan fiber absorbs fat molecules, allowing them to pass through your digestive tract without being digested. As a result, chitosan supplements are extremely popular as weight-loss supplements or for those wishing to avoid the negative effects of unhealthy oils (like hydrogenated oils). But now, with this new technology, chitosan bandages are showing their superiority as medical devices.
In fact, they're being used by the U.S. Army right now in Iraq and they are saving lives. They do that by sealing massive bleeding wounds very quickly -- in 30 seconds. That's far less time than required by conventional bandages, and the chitosan bandages don't leak blood after they seal up the wound, either. How does it work? In effect, the positively charged chitosan material bonds with red blood cells and forms an artificial clot that stops hemorrhaging. In time, of course, chitosan biodegrades, making it a fully biodegradable bandage.
The company making the bandages is called Hemcon of Portland, Oregon. It has signed a $29 million contract with the Department of Defense to provide such bandages through 2008. What's fascinating is that this is breakthrough medical technology that once again derives its superiority from nature. Nature really knows best when it comes to healing wounds and healing the human body, and when researchers and scientists are looking for solutions to specific medical problems, nature often has the solution readily available -- if we are just willing to look for it.
Interestingly, there has been other news about substances from nature that can stop dangerous wound bleeding. Recently I reported on an extract from the aloe vera plant that, when injected into wounded patients who have experienced extreme blood loss, greatly enhances their odds of survival by allowing oxygen to more easily diffuse from their remaining blood supply to the organs that need blood (such as their brain, heart, liver, and so on).
In effect, this aloe vera extract makes the blood they have left in their body work more effectively. If you combine this aloe vera extract with these chitosan bandages, you have what I call outstanding battlefield first aid derived from nature. If a soldier is wounded and bleeding profusely, his bleeding can be stopped with these chitosan bandages and the blood he has remaining in his body can be put to much greater use through the injection of this aloe vera extract.
So here we have succulents and shrimp working together to save human lives. And it's not just on the battlefield; it can also be used in first aid all over the country -- in emergency rooms, ambulances, and first aid stations at schools and industrial locations. In fact, every U.S. hospital emergency room should be carrying these bandages and aloe vera extracts.
Kudos to the researchers who were willing to take a look at nature and imagine a medical solution that could be derived from such sources. If more medical researchers would look to nature and respect the wisdom that nature has provided rather than trying to dominate nature through chemistry, we would all be a lot better off. Health solutions would be more readily available, far less expensive, and countless lives would be saved each year.
About the author: Mike Adams is a natural health author and award-winning journalist with a strong interest in personal health, the environment and the power of nature to help us all heal He has authored and published thousands of articles, interviews, consumers guides, and books on topics like health and the environment, and he has published numerous courses on preparedness and survival, including financial preparedness, emergency food supplies, urban survival and tactical self-defense. Adams is an independent journalist with strong ethics who does not get paid to write articles about any product or company. In 2010, Adams co-founded NaturalNews.com, a natural health video sharing site that has now grown in popularity. He's also a noted technology pioneer and founded a software company in 1993 that developed the HTML email newsletter software currently powering the NaturalNews subscriptions. Adams also serves as the executive director of the Consumer Wellness Center, a non-profit consumer protection group, and pursues hobbies such as martial arts, Capoeira, nature macrophotography and organic gardening.
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