Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Herbs’ Category

According to an article in the WSJ , Melinda Beck states that many people are using omega-3 supplements to protect against various ailments, despite the fact that research on omega-3’s benefits is mixed. Recent research published in JAMA suggests that omega-3 fatty acids do not protect against heart attacks, strokes or deaths. Some medical associations, including the American Psychiatric Association, recommend regular consumption of fish rich in omega-3 for most people. Still, according to Paul Coates, director of the Office of Dietary Supplements, “There is no single answer here.” Coates adds, “Given that there is a potential for benefit, and the harm has not yet been fully explored, at reasonable levels of intake, it’s not a bad idea.”

Read Full Post »

According to a December article in the Journal of the American Medical Association  (JAMA. 2009;302(24):2663-2670. http://tinyurl.com/ginko-dementiaGinkgo Biloba did not slow the rates of global or domain-specific cognitive decline in older adults.  The herbal product Ginkgo Biloba is taken frequently with the intention of improving cognitive health in aging.  However, evidence from adequately powered clinical trials is lacking regarding its effect on long-term cognitive functioning.   The Ginkgo Evaluation of Memory (GEM) study, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of 3069 community-dwelling participants aged 72 to 96 years, was conducted in 6 academic medical centers in the United States between 2000 and 2008.  Twice-daily dose of 120-mg extract of G biloba or identical-appearing placebo were given.  Rates of change over time in the Modified Mini-Mental State Examination and in neuropsychological domains of memory, attention, visual-spatial construction, language, and executive functions were evaluated .  Annual rates of decline in the scores did not differ between G biloba and placebo groups in any domains, including memory, attention, visuospatial abilities, language and executive functions.  Compared with placebo, the use of G biloba, 120 mg twice daily, did not result in less cognitive decline in older adults with normal cognition or with mild cognitive impairment.

 

Read Full Post »

MedWire (3/20, Davenport) reported that, according to a study published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, nearly “a third of older adults with mood disorders use orally ingested herbal and nutritional compounds (HNC).” For the study, researchers from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine “administered a questionnaire to 50 older bipolar disorder patients and 50 older major depression patients on their use of orally ingested HNC in the previous three months, their perspective on the efficacy and safety of HNC, and their discussions with healthcare providers.” The team found that “orally ingested HNC were used by 30 percent of the patients, at 16 percent of major depression patients and 44 percent of bipolar disorder patients.” Notably, “29 percent of patients admitted to using HNC in addition to prescribed medications, while 64 percent of patients had not discussed HNC use with their doctor.” The authors concluded, “Clinicians need to actively seek information about possible use of HNC.”

Read Full Post »