Research published in the Journal of British Dermatology reveals a study that showed the sap from milkweed cures non-melanoma skin cancers! The plant substance is effective because of ingenol mebutate, a compound in it that seems to destroy cancer cells. Australian scientists from many medical institutions in Brisbane tested the milkweed sap on humans and found remarkable results. The studies showed a 75% cure rate with no visible scarring.
Now we just have to hope folks don’t grab all the milkweed and leave nothing for the poor Monarch butterflies that depend on it for survival.
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We know that lots of our readers have pets and many are kitties. We ourselves have many furry family members. We thought we’d share this information for cat owners who want to make sure their pets don’t get sick or die from eating houseplants or toxic yard plants. This is the list:
Lilies: both outdoor (tiger, daylilies,etc) and houseplants (Easter lilies, Peace lilies) when ingested can cause kidney failure and death if not gotten to the vet immediately. Even a small bite can be toxic. If they start vomiting, get depressed and lose their appetite… look around. They may also drool and paw at the irritated areas. You may also get foaming and swelling. If you see part of the plant munched – get them to the vet.
Aloa vera: Many of us have these cactus in our homes and most cats will leave them alone, but if they should chomp on them they can get irritation of the mouth, tongue and esophagus. While not as critical as lily ingestion a visit to the vet will be prudent.
Other toxic plants are asparagus fern, amaryllis, daffodil and lily of the valley. Also watch out for dieffenbachia, rhododendron, azalea, oleander – all outdoor plants which normally cats avoid.
If you suspect the cat is acting differently, avoiding food or acting lethargic get them to the vet. If you can determine if they munched on a plant bring part of it with you. We all want our furry kids to be around a long time so you need to be diligent and not have those types of plants indoors. It’s more difficult outdoors but most cats know which ones not to munch on. Also please don’t spray your lawn with pesticides as cats and dogs not only eat the grass, but walk on it and then lick their feet. Pesticide poisoning may not show up immediately but can lead to neural damage and cancer.