Peer Reviewed Articles
10-01-2011 5-HTP is the precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Commercially available 5-HTP is obtained from the seeds of the plant <i>Griffonia simplicifolia</i>. 5-HTP has been suggested as a treatment for many conditions. This monograph summarizes the research on the 5-HTP, including information on its most and least effective uses.
09-01-2011 Botanical remedies have been used for centuries to treat various inflammatory conditions. This review describes some recent advances in our understanding of the actions and efficacy of 2 ancient anti-inflammatory herbs--turmeric (Curcuma longa) and frankincense (Boswellia serrata)--with modern examples of the evidence of their efficacy in osteoarthritis.
09-01-2011 Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is required for the synthesis of the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine and for myelin formation. This monograph summarizes the research on the vitamin, including information on its most and least effective uses.
08-01-2011 Cherries, the fruit of Prunus cerasus trees, and their juice concentrates may be clinically beneficial in various conditions, including gout, arthritis, muscle injury, diabetes and neurodegeneration. In general tart cherries contain more beneficial phytochemicals.
08-01-2011 Vitamin D is one of the most publicized nutrients today. This monograph assesses the recent research, outlines the most and least promising uses for the vitamin, and explains interactions and contraindications.
07-01-2011 Hawthorn and hibiscus have a long history of use in traditional botanical medicine in many parts of the world for their multiple health effects, but especially in relation to cardiovascular disorders. In the last 15-20 years, modern research has expanded and clarified those uses. Hawthorn research has focused on congestive heart failure, and sour tea research has focused on hypertension and dyslipidemia, with several clinical trials emerging in the last 3-4 years.
07-01-2011 Zinc is necessary for the functioning of more than 300 different enzymes and plays a vital role in a large number of biological processes. This article distills the copious research surrounding the mineral and rates its effectiveness for a variety of conditions.
06-01-2011 The practice of acupuncture originated in China 5,000 years ago. Today it is widely used throughout the world and is one of the main pillars of Chinese medicine. There are many different varieties of the practice of acupuncture, both in the Orient and in the West. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) usually combines acupuncture with Chinese herbs. Classical acupuncture (also known as five element acupuncture) uses a different needling technique and relies on acupuncture independent of the use of herbs. Japanese acupuncture uses smaller needles than the other varieties. Medical acupuncture refers to acupuncture practiced by a conventional medical doctor. Auricular acupuncture treats the entire body through acupuncture points in the ears only. Electroacupuncture uses electrical currents attached to acupuncture needles.
06-01-2011 dl-alpha tocopheryl succinate (aTOS) is an analogue of alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E) with unique biological properties. Unlike its parent compound, aTOS does not have a redox potential and is therefore not an antioxidant. Its ability to prolong cell cycle arrest, induce apoptosis, and act as a radiosensitizer make aTOS a compound of great interest in integrative cancer care. In vitro and in vivo evidence suggests it is capable of simultaneously protecting normal cells from chromosomal damage while potentiating cytotoxicity of conventional therapies.
05-01-2011 The prevalence of eczema has increased during the past few decades and continues to rise. Furthermore, childhood eczema is associated with the development of allergy later in life. As a result, there is considerable interest in identifying effective treatments to prevent eczema and, possibly, halt the progression of allergic disease.
05-01-2011 Glucosamine is a natural compound that is found in healthy cartilage. Glucosamine sulfate is a normal constituent of glycoaminoglycans in cartilage matrix and synovial fluid. Available evidence from randomized controlled trials supports the use of glucosamine sulfate in the treatment of osteoarthritis, particularly of the knee. It is believed that the sulfate moiety provides clinical benefit in the synovial fluid by strengthening cartilage and aiding glycosaminoglycan synthesis. If this hypothesis is confirmed, it would mean that only the glucosamine sulfate form is effective and non-sulfated glucosamine forms are not effective.
04-01-2011 Iodine is an essential element to human health. Globally, a large percentage of the world's population is affected by iodine deficiency disorders. Iodine-rich diets and iodinization of salt around the world has reduced the prevalence of endemic goiters. In the United States, as well as around the world, the most vulnerable populations to the consequences of iodine deficiency are pregnant women and children. Maintaining adequate iodine status while avoiding acute exposure to large doses of iodine may be the most effective means of lessening iodine-related diseases.
03-01-2011 Lycopene is present in many fruits and vegetables, with tomatoes and processed tomato products being among the richest sources. This review highlights the scientific documentation of lycopene as a therapeutic agent. Lycopene may alleviate chronic diseases such as cancer and coronary heart disease. Lycopene has also been found effective in the treatment of eye diseases, male infertility, inflammation, and osteoporosis. Experimental, clinical, and epidemiological studies have also established its role in the management of diabetes and hepatoprotection.
02-01-2011 Mast cells play a dual role in cancer, and their presence in tumor tissue may affect prognosis both positively and negatively. What isn't clear is in which situations mast cells aid tumor growth and in which they suppress it. Published studies are reviewed in an attempt to provide a clinically useful understanding for the practitioner.
02-01-2011 Emerging personalized health strategies utilize glutathione (GSH) as a quantitative indicator of health with the expectation that diet selection, GSH supplementation, and lifestyle approaches can be used to manage GSH status, thereby providing a health dividend by protecting against disease development.
01-01-2011 Active hexose correlated compound (AHCC) is a fermented mushroom extract that is commercially available and promoted for immune support. This review focuses on safety and efficacy results from human clinical trials that have included subjects with a variety of cancers, as well as healthy populations. Animal data are also briefly discussed in the context of recent human data, with an emphasis on the possible applications of AHCC in promoting resistance to influenza virus infection. Available data suggest that AHCC supplementation clearly affects immune outcomes and immune cell populations--especially natural killer cell activity.
12-01-2010 St. Johns wort (Hypericum perforatum) is a very well studied botanical medicine. Despite the vast body of research, controversy still surrounds its effectiveness, and research for use in pregnancy, breastfeeding women, and children is lacking.This review outlines and summarizes a substantial body of information on hypericum for depressive illness. While studying this research and considering the potential benefits of hypericum for depression, it must be clear that the naturopathic and holistic approach should not focus merely on herbal therapy. Instead, a fully integrative plan should promote a multifactorial, individualized approach that includes diet, lifestyle changes, exercise, spiritual and psychological health, physiologic support using nutrients, and patient-specific modalities that may include homeopathy, acupuncture, massage therapy, or hydrotherapy.
A Commentary on the Nutrient-Chronic Disease Relationship and the New Paradigm of Evidence-Based Nutrition
12-01-2010 There is general agreement within the nutrition science and practitioner communities that ones diet, nutritional status, and lifestyle can substantially predispose one to (or protect against) many chronic diseases and other conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. For decades, the US government has invested, and continues to invest, enormous resources to support programs such as the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the Institute of Medicines (IOM) Dietary Reference Intakes to develop recommendations for diet and nutrient intake levels that will, among other things, reduce chronic disease risk within the population. The nutrient-chronic disease relationship is also addressed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) when it reviews Health Claim and Qualified Health Claim petitions, both of which are viewed as broad public health statements. But many questions unique to nutrition still remain when it comes to evaluating the evidence on which these and other recommendations are based.
11-01-2010 Healthcare providers can help prevent and treat osteoporosis by supporting the improvement of nutritional status through diet and nutritional supplementation, along with suggestion for an increase in exercise training.
11-01-2010 Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder marked by resting tremors, rigidity of movement, postural abnormalities, and akinesia. The "trigger"for the onset of PD is not known and is presumed to be multifactorial, involving genetic susceptibility and environmental agents.