Abstracts & Commmentary

Red Wine Polyphenols' Effects on Gut Microbiota Ecology

by Barry W. Ritz, PhD
08-01-2012 
Following an initial 15-day washout period in which subjects consumed no alcohol, participants were assigned to consume either red wine (272 mL/d), de-alcoholized red wine (272 mL/d), or gin (100 mL/d), for a period of 20 days. Dose was portioned for equivalence in ethanol content for red wine and gin, and comparable total phenols in red wine and de-alcoholized red wine.

Acupuncture Improves COPD Symptoms

by Winston Cardwell, ND, LAc
08-01-2012 
One half of 68 participants with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease received “real acupuncture," while the other half received “sham acupuncture," over a 12 week period to measure how well participants tolerated the 6 Minute Walk Test (6MWT) in regards to severity of dyspnea on exertion (DOE).

Benefits of Melatonin in Solid Tumors When Used Concurrently With Chemotherapy

by Renee Lang, ND, FABNO
08-01-2012 
In 8 randomized controlled trials, a control group receiving standard chemo/radiotherapy was compared to an intervention group receiving the same treatment with the addition of melatonin to find out if melatonin affects tumor remission, overall survival, and mitigation of treatment side effects.

Half of Preschoolers Do Not Go Outside to Play Daily

by Matthew Baral, ND
07-01-2012 
On average, one half of the preschoolers in the 8,950 children sampled, representing 4 million children, are not being taken outside to play daily by a parent. Fifty-one percent of children were reported to go outside to play at least once per day with a parent; 58% of children not in childcare went outside daily.

Fish Oil and Cardiovascular Disease

by Keri Marshall, ND
07-01-2012 
This study concluded that based on the 14 studies analyzed, supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids did not reduce the risk of overall cardiovascular events, all-cause mortality, sudden cardiac death, myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, or transient ischemic attack and stroke. A small reduction in cardiovascular death was found but disappeared when data from one study "with major methodological problems" was excluded.

Can Vitamins C and E Improve H. pylori Eradication Rates?

by Donald Brown, ND
07-01-2012 
Thirty patients with a diagnosis of Helicobacter pylori-positive non-ulcer dyspepsia participated in a 4-week study to find out if vitamins C and E improve eradication rates.

Folate and Childhood Cancers

by Jaclyn Chasse-Smeaton, ND
07-01-2012 
This study looked at first diagnosis of cancer during 1986-2008 among children <5 years of age, looking both at total incidence of cancer as well as 14 categories of malignancy most likely to have prenatal origins.

Prunes May Prevent and Reverse Osteoporotic Bone Loss

by Jacob Schor, ND, FABNO
07-01-2012 
One hundred sixty post-menopausal women participated in a randomized non-blind comparative study to discover if consumption of dried plums significantly increases bone mineral density of ulna and spine in comparison with consuming dried apples.

Cannabinoid-Opioid Interaction in Chronic Pain

by Kevin Spelman, PhD, MCPP
06-01-2012 
Donald Abrams, MD, a University of California-San Francisco researcher and clinician who brings a rational approach to Cannabis use, is to be credited for forging another path forward in the use of medical marijuana. Although a placebo-controlled study previously showed that oral THC in patients using opioids augments analgesia, this is the first human study to show that inhaled cannabis safely potentiates the analgesia of opioids.

Survival Rates in Gastric Cancer Patients Using Lentinan

by Michael Traub, ND, DHANP, FABNO
06-01-2012 
Study suggests that chemo-immunotherapy with lentinan provides a survival advantage in patients with inoperable gastric cancer. This is the most recent investigation of lentinan used for this purpose in a number of studies going back to at least 1983, where it was reported that it improved survival, immune response, and hematological measures in advanced or recurrent gastric, colorectal, and breast carcinomas.

Statin Use Increases the Risk of Diabetes Mellitus in Postmenopausal Women

by Michael T. Murray, ND
06-01-2012 
This study investigated whether the incidence of new-onset diabetes mellitus (DM) is associated with statin use among postmenopausal women participating in the Women's Health Initiative (WHI).

Ginger May Reduce Colorectal Cancer Risk

by Jacob Schor, ND, FABNO
06-01-2012 
Participants in this study underwent 2 flexible sigmoidoscopies, one before ginger treatment and the second 28 days after starting to take the ginger. The second procedure was performed as close as possible to 24 hours after the participant took the final dose of ginger. There were no significant differences in mean percent change between baseline and day 28 for any of the eicosanoids, when normalized to protein, however this study brings us a step closer to understanding whether ginger could be used to prevent colorectal cancer.

Fish Oil Supplement Improves Quality of Life in Patients with Lung Cancer

by Tina Kaczor, ND, FABNO
06-01-2012 
In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 33 patients with with stage IIIa or IIIb non-small cell lung cancer were given either a liquid supplement containing omega-3 fatty acids or an isocaloric equivalent for 5 weeks.

Use of Serum Magnesium Measurements to Exclude Magnesium Deficiency is Cause for Concern

by Carolyn Dean, MD, ND
06-01-2012 
Magnesium deficiency was found to be associated with increased prevalence and risk in 11 major health conditions. In 68 of the 183 peer-reviewed studies, magnesium deficiency was found to predict adverse events, and a decreased risk of pathology was noted when supplementation or treatment was instituted.

Fried Foods and Heart Disease

by Jacob Schor, ND, FABNO
05-02-2012 
In this prospective cohort study, 40,757 people aged 29 to 69, who were part of the Spanish cohort of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition, were followed from baseline in 1992 to 1996 until 2004. Computerized dietary history questionnaires administered by trained interviewers were used to assess participant food consumption patterns. During a median of 11 years in which cohort participants were followed, 606 coronary heart disease events and 1135 deaths from all causes occurred. Eating large quantities of fried foods was not associated with a significant change in either disease or mortality risk.

Cherry Juice Supplies Melatonin and Improves Sleep

by Jacob Schor, ND, FABNO
05-01-2012 

Warm "Hay Baths" for Osteoarthritis

by William Benda, MD
05-01-2012 
In the Alpine area of Italy there is a long tradition of phytothermotherapy, or immersion of the patient's body in fermenting freshly mown grass, to treat certain rheumatic diseases, including OA. Known as "hay baths," this treatment consists of 20-minute daily immersions for 10 days in warm grass. This randomized, controlled clinical trial tested the effectiveness of these "hay baths."

Ongoing Neuropsychological Issues in Breast Cancer Survivors

by Tina Kaczor, ND, FABNO
05-01-2012 
There have been many studies that have shown chemotherapy related cognitive impairment (CRCI), otherwise known as "chemo brain" is a sequela of chemotherapy in breast cancer survivors. This study is the first to demonstrate cognitive impairment can be significant two decades after receiving a chemotherapy regimen, in this case CMF. The permanence of these symptoms for some patients should prompt us to prioritize brain recovery after chemotherapy treatment.

Magnesium and High Blood Pressure

by Carolyn Dean, MD, ND
04-01-2012 
In this study, people with high blood pressure who were not on magnesium had higher blood pressure than when they were on magnesium. The authors concluded that magnesium supplementation appears to achieve a small but clinically significant reduction in BP.

A Whiff of Saffron Changes Hormone Levels in Women

by Jacob Schor, ND, FABNO
04-01-2012 
Forty-seven female college students took part in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study involving short-term exposure to extracts of saffron. The study found that twenty minutes of exposure to the odor of saffron had a significant effect on these young women's hormone levels.