SnakeOil supplements? (public)
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supplementalternative nameEVIDENCEconditionHEALTH CONDITIONTYPEone to watchPOPULAR INTERESTNO OF STUDIES WE EXAMINEDSCIENTIFIC INTERESTUNUSEDnotesExcludeCochrane systematic reviewOther International review board or metastudyLink to main individual studymain study sourceno. of studies in Cochrane metastudyno. of studies in metastudyyear(s) of metastudyNo. of individual studies / reviewsN positive studies / trials% positive studies / trialsLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual studyLink to individual study
our score. 0 = harmful 1 = no evidence, 2 = slight, 3 = conflicting, 4 = promising , 5 = good, 6 = strong Health condition or claim made for supplement (appears in bubble)the type of condition (appears in filter panel)what type of substance is this? (appears in filter panel)few studies / trials but positive potential. 2 trials or fewer, at least 1 with positive hits (used to scale the bubbles) - "supplement name + health"Number of citations on Google Scholar (2000-2012) - supplement name + health <== removed quotation marks% improvement in trials. Comments by Cochrane or other review/guidelines or our notes on the evidence. Show this item in the viz? (i.e, those that are not systematic or other reviews). N trials showing benefit in areas tested (p<.05). 0.5 = significant results in some areas but not others
abatacept4osteoarthritismusculoskeletalhormone0.1311400Abatacept appears to reduce joint pain and improve function.
aloe vera2diabetesdiabetesplant / herb88.525000We found one study working with diabetes patients with high blood levels of fat (dyslipidemia). One 300mg capsule every 12 hours for 2 months has a significant positive impact on blood lipid levels. Medica"Ten studies were located. They suggest that oral administration of aloe vera might be a useful adjunct for lowering blood glucose in diabetic patients as well as for reducing blood lipid levels in patients with hyperlipidaemia. Topical application of aloe vera is not an effective preventative for radiation-induced injuries. It might be effective for genital herpes and psoriasis. Whether it promotes wound healing is unclear. There are major caveats associated with all of these statements. CONCLUSION: Even though there are some promising results, clinical effectiveness of oral or topical aloe vera is not sufficiently defined at present." Vogler and Ernst (1999). 'Aloe vera: a systematic review of its clinical effectiveness.' Br. J. Gen. Pract. 49/447, 823-28. PMID: 10885091.^ Bunyapraphatsara N, Yongchaiyudha S, Rungpitarangsi V, Chokechaijaroenporn O. (1996) Antidiabetic activity of Aloe vera L juice. II. Clinical trial in diabetes mellitus patients in combination with glibenclamide. Phytomedicine 3: 245–248.^ Nassiff HA, Fajardo F, Velez F. (1993) Effecto del aloe sobre la hiperlipidemia en pacientes refractarios a la dieta. Rev Cuba Med Gen Integr 9:43–515000 angina patients adding the 'Husk of Isabgol' and 'aloe vera' to their diet had reduced total serum cholesterol, serum triglycerides, fasting and post prandial blood sugar level in diabetic patients, total lipids and also increased HDL Agarwal 1985
aloe vera1burns, cutsgeneral healthplant / herb88.525000There is currently an absence of high quality clinical trial evidence to support the use of Aloe vera as treatment for wounds.
aloe vera0digestive aiddigestionplant / herb88.525000Ingestion of aloe vera is associated with diarrhea, electrolyte imbalance and kidney disfunction. of Environmenta Science and Health
andrographis1respiratory tract infectionsinfectionsplant / herbOTW0.257750While there is no evidence that andrographis is effective as a treatment, it can help to reduce the symptoms. Clinics of North AmericaMeta-analysis of 3 trials (433 patients) found Andrographis paniculata extract alone or in combination with Acanthopanax senticosus was more effective than placebo & may be an effective treatment of uncomplicated acute upper respiratory tract infection. Poolsup et al (2004). PMID: 14748896.Andrographis paniculata (N.) extract SHA-10 fixed combination, Kan Jang, shows a positive effect in 95 individuals in the treatment of acute upper respiratory tract infections and also relieves the inflammatory symptoms of sinusitis and the drug was well tolerated. Gabrielian 2002#
anti-oxidants3infertility in mensex, men, childrencompound30.2569000Evidence of anti-oxidants as treatment for male infertility is inconclusive."A systematic review of randomized studies was conducted to evaluate the effects of oral antioxidants (vitamins C and E, zinc, selenium, folate, carnitine and carotenoids) on sperm quality and pregnancy rate in infertile men. Seventeen randomized trials, including a total of 1,665 men, were identified, which differed in the populations studied and type, dosage and duration of antioxidants used. 14 of the 17 (82%) trials showed an improvement in either sperm quality or pregnancy rate after antioxidant therapy. Ten trials examined pregnancy rate and six showed a significant improvement after antioxidant therapy. The use of oral antioxidants in infertile men could improve sperm quality and pregnancy rates." Ross et al (2010). 'A systematic review of the effect of oral antioxidants on male infertility.' Reprod Biomed Online 20. PMID: 20378409.
anti-oxidants0mortalitygeneral healthcompound30.2569000Antixoxidants have no health benefits. In fact, beta carotene, vitamin A and vitamin E appear to increase the risk of death."We did not find convincing evidence that antioxidant supplements have beneficial effects on mortality. Even more, beta carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin E seem to increase the risk of death. Further randomized trials are needed to establish the effects of vitamin C and selenium." Bjelakovic et al (2007). 'Mortality in Randomized Trials of Antioxidant Supplements for Primary and Secondary Prevention: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis'. JAMA 297/8, 842-57.
"Randomised primary and secondary intervention trials have failed to show any consistent benefit from the use of antioxidant supplements on cardiovascular disease or cancer risk, with some trials even suggesting possible harm in certain subgroups. " Stanner SA, Hughes J, Kelly CN, Buttriss J (2004). "A review of the epidemiological evidence for the 'antioxidant hypothesis'". Public Health Nutr 7 (3): 407–22. "To date, [...] the published results of randomized, placebo-controlled trials of supplements containing antioxidant nutrients have not provided clear evidence of a beneficial effect." Hercberg S, Galan P, Preziosi P, Bertrais S, Mennen L, Malvy D, Roussel AM, Favier A, Briancon S (2004). "The SU.VI.MAX Study: a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of the health effects of antioxidant vitamins and minerals". Arch Intern Med 164 (21): 2335–42.
astaxanthin1oxidative stressgeneral healthcompoundOTW3.415400"There have been at least eight clinical studies conducted in over 180 humans using astaxanthin to assess its safety, bioavailability and clinical aspects relevant to oxidative stress, inflammation or the cardiovascular system. There have been no adverse outcomes reported. Studies have demonstrated reduced markers of oxidative stress and inflammation and improved blood rheology." Fassett and Coombes (2009). PMID: 19656058.
astragalus3chronic kidney diseasegeneral healthplant / herb327700Astagalus might have significant positive effects for patients with chronic kidney disease when combined with conventional treatments. However, the evidence is of low quality.
astragalus2dna damage, immune systemgeneral healthplant / herbOTW327700Astragalus stengthens the immune system, boosting resistance to infections. However, studies are limited., Mead (2003) Astragalus is the least-studied agent. There are some preclinical trials that show intriguing immune activity. The herbs discussed appear to have satisfactory safety profiles. Cancer patients may wish to use these botanicals to inhibit tumor growth or to boost resistance to infections. However, passive immunotherapy with herbs, with no mechanism to expose tumor antigens, is unlikely to be effective in inhibiting tumor growth. Although the margin of safety for these herbs is large, more research is needed to demonstrate the clear value of using herbs to improve resistance to infections. Integr Cancer Ther. 2003 Sep;2(3):247-67.
B vitamins2Alzheimer'smental healthvitamin8.2445000Vitamin B treatment slows brain shrinkage and significantly reduces brain cell death. of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America"DESIGN, SETTING, AND PATIENTS: A multicenter, randomized, double-blind controlled clinical trial of high-dose folate, vitamin B(6), and vitamin B(12) supplementation in 409 (of 601 screened) individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease. RESULTS: A total of 340 participants (202 in active treatment group and 138 in placebo group) completed the trial while taking study medication. Although the vitamin supplement regimen was effective in reducing homocysteine levels, it had no beneficial effect on the primary cognitive measure, rate of change in ADAS-cog score during 18 months, or on any secondary measures. A higher quantity of adverse events involving depression was observed in the group treated with vitamin supplements. CONCLUSION: This regimen of high-dose B vitamin supplements does not slow cognitive decline in individuals with mild to moderate AD." Aisen et al (2008). PMID: 18854539."INTRODUCTION: Whether homocysteine lowering by B vitamins can reduce cognitive decline in Alzheimer disease and vascular dementia patients is unclear. METHODS AND MATERIALS: 140 subjects with mild to moderate Alzheimer disease or vascular dementia were randomly assigned to take 1 mg of methylcobalamin and 5 mg of folic acid, or placebo once daily for 24 months. The primary outcome was Mattis dementia rating scale (MDRS). CONCLUSION: Homocysteine lowering in dementia patients did not significantly reduce global cognitive decline.""Male and female patients aged >50 years with mild to moderate AD and normal folic acid and vitamin B12 concentrations were enrolled. RESULTS: Eighty-nine patients (45 men, 44 women; all Taiwanese; mean age 75 years) were enrolled and randomized. CONCLUSIONS: In this population of patients with mild to moderate AD in Taiwan, a multivitamin supplement containing vitamins B(6) and B(12) and folic acid for 26 weeks decreased homocysteine concentrations. No statistically significant beneficial effects on cognition or ADL function were found between multivitamin and placebo at 26 weeks.""METHODS AND FINDINGS: Single-center, randomized, double-blind controlled trial of high-dose folic acid, vitamins B(6) and B(12) in 271 individuals (of 646 screened) over 70 y old with mild cognitive impairment. RESULTS: A total of 168 participants (85 in active treatment group; 83 receiving placebo) completed the MRI section of the trial. The mean rate of brain atrophy per year was 0.76% in the active treatment group and 1.08% in the placebo group. CONCLUSIONS AND SIGNIFICANCE: The accelerated rate of brain atrophy in elderly with mild cognitive impairment can be slowed by treatment with homocysteine-lowering B vitamins. Sixteen percent of those over 70 y old have mild cognitive impairment and half of these develop Alzheimer's disease. Since accelerated brain atrophy is a characteristic of subjects with mild cognitive impairment who convert to Alzheimer's disease, trials are needed to see if the same treatment will delay the development of Alzheimer's disease."
bee pollen1cancer cancerother2325200 Journal of Medicinal Chemistry Current information regarding the adverse effects of bee pollen is not very robust, therefore potential damage should be kept in mind before ingesting nutritional supplements in which it is contained. This report serves as an important reminder to the public as well as healthcare providers of the potential of renal failure related to nutritional supplements
benfotiamine (fat-soluble thiamin)3anti-aging, diabetes diabetes, general healthcompound274100The findings are mixed, with some trials showing no effect and some showing some short-term benefits. 9Fifty-nine patients completed the study. Marked increases in whole-blood concentrations of thiamine and thiamine diphosphate were found in the benfotiamine group (both P < 0.001 vs. placebo). However, no significant differences in changes in peripheral nerve function or soluble inflammatory biomarkers were observed between the groups. Our findings suggest that high-dose benfotiamine (300 mg/day) supplementation over 24 months has no significant effects upon peripheral nerve function or soluble markers of inflammation in patients with type 1 diabetes. Diabetes Care. 2012 May;35(5):1095-7. Epub 2012 Mar 23.Compared to placebo, benfotiamine did not result in significant reductions in plasma or urinary AGEs or plasma markers of endothelial dysfunction and low-grade inflammation. Benfotiamine for 12 weeks did not significantly affect intermediate pathways of hyperglycemia-induced vascular complications. PLoS One. 2012;7(7):e40427. Epub 2012 Jul 6.

A statistically significant (p = 0.0287) improvement in the neuropathy score was observed in the group given active drug when compared to the placebo-treated controls. There was no statistically significant change observed in the tuning fork test. The most pronounced effect on complaints was a decrease in pain (p = 0.0414). More patients in the benfotiamine-treated group than in the placebo group considered their clinical condition to have improved (p = 0.052). No side effects attributable to benfotiamine were observed. The differences between the groups cannot be attributed to a change in metabolic parameters since there were no significant alterations in the HbA1 levels and blood sugar profiles. The body mass index of the two groups did not differ. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2005 Feb;43(2):71-7.
beta-glucans2colds, immune systeminfections, respiratorycompoundOTW0.36226100Reduced number of colds by 25% and severity of symptoms by 15%. Might increase the body's ability to fend off infections. Nutrition and Food ResearchBeta-glucans are naturally occurring polysaccharides. These glucose polymers are constituents of the cell wall of certain pathogenic bacteria and fungi. The healing and immunostimulating properties of mushrooms have been known for thousands of years in the Eastern countries. These mushrooms contain biologically active polysaccharides that mostly belong to group of beta-glucans. These substances increase host immune defense by activating complement system, enhancing macrophages and natural killer cell function.
beta-glucans1cancercancercompoundOTW0.3626100Compounds found in brewers' yeast and mushrooms. Most studies so far have been done in animals or test tubes, rather than on human subjects. It appears that beta-glucans inhibit tumor growth in mice. Trials on human subjects are needed. Complementary and Alternative Medicine"So far, no good quality clinical trial data is available on assessing the effectiveness of purified beta-glucans among cancer patients. Future effort should direct at performing well-designed clinical trials to verify the actual clinical efficacy of beta-glucans or beta-glucans containing compounds." Chan et al (2009). PMID: 19515245.
bitter melon1diabetesdiabetesplant / herb3.726900There is not enough evidence to support using bitter melon in the treatment of diabetes. human studies#
black cohosh2menopausewomenplant / herbOTW0.918810There is insufficient evidence to claim that black cohosh improves menopause symptoms. isopropanolic aqueous extract of Cimicifuga racemosa (40 mg/day) was found to be a valid alternative to low-dose transdermal estradiol in the management of climacteric complaints in 64 postmenopausal women who cannot be treated with or who refuse conventional strategies. Nappi et al (2005).#
black tea1cancer preventioncancerplant / herb196622000Reviews have found no association between black tea and ovarian or breast cancer risk."Several studies have explored a possible association between regular consumption of black tea and rates of cancer in populations. This research has yielded conflicting results, with some studies suggesting benefits, and others reporting no effects. Laboratory and animal studies report that components of tea, such as polyphenols, have antioxidant properties and effects against tumors. However, effects in humans remain unclear, and these components may be more common in green tea rather than in black tea. Some animal and laboratory research suggests that components of black tea may be carcinogenic, although effects in humans are not clear. Overall, the relationship of black tea consumption and human cancer remains undetermined."#
borage seed oil4rheumatismmusculoskeletalplant / herb1.27740Borage seed oil improves pain and function, and probably has no adverse effects. g/d GLA in borage seed oil reduced the number of tender joints by 36% for 37 rheumatism patients in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, 24-week trial. Leventhal et al (1993). PMID: 8214997.#
bromelain3arthritismusculoskeletalenzyme0.978840Bromelain reduces arthritis symptoms. More research into dosage and adverse effects is required."All previous trials, which have been uncontrolled or comparative studies, indicate its potential use for the treatment of osteoarthritis. [...] The data available at present indicate the need for trials to establish the efficacy and optimum dosage for bromelain and the need for adequate prospective adverse event monitoring in such chronic conditions as osteoarthritis." Brien et al (2004). 'Bromelain as a Treatment for Osteoarthritis: a Review of Clinical Studies.' Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine: eCAM. 1/3, 251–57. PMID 15841258.
butterburPetasites hybridus2migrainespainplant / herb0.6651810Butterbur extract may lower the frequency and severity of migraines. 2006 review of 2 RCTs: The extract at higher dose (150 mg) showed a greater decreased frequency of migraine attacks and a greater number of responders (improvement>50%) after treatment over 3-4 months than the extract at lower dose (100 mg) and placebo. 2) RCT, double blind, 245 migraine patients. 75 mg dose was more effective than placebo and well tolerated as a preventive therapy for migraine. 50 mg dose not significantly more effective than placebo. RCT, double blind, 60 participants: The frequency of migraine attacks decreased by a maximum of 60% compared to the baseline. Results significant. Well tolerated. no abstract The patented special butterbur root extract is safe for the treatment in humans.
caffeine5memorycognitioncompoundOTW29.83281000Enhances consolidation of long term memories. et al 20141) We used post-study caffeine administration to test its effect on memory consolidation using a behavioral discrimination task. Caffeine enhanced performance 24 h after administration according to an inverted U-shaped dose-response curve; this effect was specific to consolidation and not retrieval. We conclude that caffeine enhanced consolidation of long-term memories in humans.2) In mice, caffeine and the selective A(2A) adenosine receptor antagonist SCH 58261 facilitated memory retention when administered immediately after training, but not when administered 180 min later. The dose response was a bell-shaped curve. Caffeine displays clearer and more robust beneficial effects on memory performance when memory is perturbed by stressful or noxious stimuli either in human or animal studies. Thus, caffeine restores memory performance in sleep-deprived or aged human individuals, a finding replicated in rodent animal models.
caffeine2skin cancercancercompoundOTW29.8281000Epidemiological evidence shows women who consume more than three cups of coffee a day have a lower cancer risk than people who drink less than one cup per month. et al. 2012
calcium4colorectal cancercancermineral37.32870000No evidence that calcium supplementation stops colorectal cancer itself, but it does inhibit potentially pre-cancerous colorectal polyps (adenomatous polyps) 2"We randomly assigned 930 subjects (mean age, 61 years; 72 percent men) with a recent history of colorectal adenomas to receive either calcium carbonate (3 g [1200 mg of elemental calcium] daily) or placebo, with follow-up colonoscopies one and four years after the qualifying examination. [...] CONCLUSIONS: Calcium supplementation is associated with a significant - though moderate - reduction in the risk of recurrent colorectal adenomas." Baron et al (1999). 'Calcium supplements for the prevention of colorectal adenomas. Calcium Polyp Prevention Study Group', N. Engl. J. Med. 340/2, 101–7. PMID: 9887161."We randomly assigned 665 patients with a history of colorectal adenomas to three treatment groups, in a parallel design: calcium gluconolactate and carbonate (2 g elemental calcium daily), fibre (3.5 g ispaghula husk), or placebo. Participants had colonoscopy after 3 years of follow-up. The primary endpoint was adenoma recurrence. [...] Calcium supplementation was associated with a modest but not significant reduction in the risk of adenoma recurrence." Bonithon-Kopp et al (2000). 'Calcium and fibre supplementation in prevention of colorectal adenoma recurrence: a randomised intervention trial', European Cancer Prevention Organisation Study Group". Lancet 356/9238, 1300–06. PMID 11073017. #
calcium4blood pressurecardiomineral36.92870000High quality evidence has shown that extra calcium can slightly reduce blood pressure, especially in people younger than 35.
calcium2osteoporosis in postmenopausal womenmusculoskeletal, womenmineral37.32870000Calcium might help to prevent fractures, although the results have been contradictory."Results of recent clinical trials indicate that calcium supplementation does not significantly reduce fracture risk in postmenopausal women. However, evidence from the same studies suggests that beneficial effects on fracture risk may be seen in women who are adherent to therapy. Postmenopausal women should continue calcium supplementation to reduce osteoporosis risk." Spangler et al (2011). 'Calcium supplementation in postmenopausal women to reduce the risk of osteoporotic fractures.' Am. J. Health Sys. Pharm, 68/4, 309-18. PMID: 21289325."Ca supplements appear to be effective in reducing bone loss in women late post menopause (>5 years post menopause), particularly in those with low habitual Ca intake (<400 mg/d). In women early post menopause (<5 years post menopause) who are not vitamin D deficient, Ca supplementation has little effect on bone mineral density. However, supplementation with vitamin D and Ca has been shown to reduce fracture rates in the institutionalised elderly, but there remains controversy as to whether supplementation is effective in reducing fracture in free-living populations." Lanham-New (2008). PMID: 18412990.
calcium + vit. D3breast cancer in premenopausal women, cancercancer, womenmineral2.41240000There is no firm evidence that calcium and vitamin D supplementation decreases cancer risk. 18"METHODS: We prospectively evaluated total calcium and vitamin D intake in relation to breast cancer incidence among 10,578 premenopausal and 20,909 postmenopausal women 45 years or older who were free of cancer and cardiovascular disease at baseline in the Women's Health Study. [...] CONCLUSIONS: Findings from this study suggest that higher intakes of calcium and vitamin D may be associated with a lower risk of developing premenopausal breast cancer. The likely apparent protection in premenopausal women may be more pronounced for more aggressive breast tumors." Lin et al (2007). 'Intakes of calcium and vitamin d and breast cancer risk in women.' Arch. Intern. Med. 167/10, 1050–59. PMID 17533208."This was a 4-y, population-based, double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled trial. The primary outcome was fracture incidence, and the principal secondary outcome was cancer incidence. The subjects were 1179 community-dwelling women randomly selected from the population of healthy postmenopausal women aged >55 y in a 9-county rural area of Nebraska centered at latitude 41.4 degrees N. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive 1400-1500 mg supplemental calcium/d alone (Ca-only), supplemental calcium plus 1100 IU vitamin D3/d (Ca + D), or placebo. [...] CONCLUSIONS: Improving calcium and vitamin D nutritional status substantially reduces all-cancer risk in postmenopausal women." Lappe et al (2007). 'Vitamin D and calcium supplementation reduces cancer risk: results of a randomized trial', Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 85/6, 1586–91. PMID 17556697.
capsaicin1non-allergic rhinitisgeneral healthplant / herb5.441800Capsaicin comes from chili peppers. Evidence has found that inhaling 4 micrograms at least 5 times a day can reduce inflammation, but the quality of the evidence is low.
carnosine1anti-aginggeneral healthcompound0.610800 in Focus
cat's claw1cancercancerplant / herb4.817900 Research
chamomile1bowel disordersdigestionplant / herb5.619300 Pharma Chemicano evidence#
chocolate, dark3blood pressurecardioplant / herb39.770800Chemicals known as flavanols, found in cocoa products, are thought to widen blood vessels and cause a minor drop in blood pressure. Further trials are needed to ascertain long-term efficacy. Does not apply to mllk chocolate."RESULTS: Fifteen trial arms of 13 assessed studies met the inclusion criteria. CONCLUSION: Our meta-analysis suggests that dark chocolate is superior to placebo in reducing systolic hypertension or diastolic prehypertension." Ried et al (2010). 'Does chocolate reduce blood pressure? A meta-analysis.' BMC Med. 8/39. PMID: 20584271."10 randomized controlled trials comprising 297 individuals were included in the analysis. [...] The meta-analysis confirms the BP-lowering capacity of flavanol-rich cocoa products in a larger set of trials than previously reported. However, significant statistical heterogeneity across studies could be found, and questions such as the most appropriate dose and the long-term side effect profile warrant further investigation before cocoa products can be recommended as a treatment option in hypertension." Desch et al (2010). 'Effect of cocoa products on blood pressure: systematic review and meta-analysis.' Am. J. Hypertens. 23/1 97-103. PMID: 19910929."CONCLUSION: Current randomized dietary studies indicate that consumption of foods rich in cocoa may reduce blood pressure, while tea intake appears to have no effect." Taubert et al (2007). 'Effect of cocoa and tea intake on blood pressure: a meta-analysis.' Arch. Int. Med. 167/7, 626-34. PMID: 17420419."Collectively, our data demonstrate that the human ingestion of the flavanol (-)-epicatechin is, at least in part, causally linked to the reported vascular effects observed after the consumption of flavanol-rich cocoa. -)-Epicatechin mediates beneficial effects of flavanol-rich cocoa on vascular function in humans." Schroeter et al (2006). '(-)-Epicatechin mediates beneficial effects of flavanol-rich cocoa on vascular function in humans.' PNAS 23/4, 1024-09. PMID: 16418281.
chromium2diabetesdiabetesmineral7.1646000Chromium might lower blood glucose levels. It might also help with fat loss, which could benefit those with diabetes."Conclusions: Data from RCTs show no effect of chromium on glucose or insulin concentrations in nondiabetic subjects. The data for persons with diabetes are inconclusive. RCTs in well-characterized, at-risk populations are necessary to determine the effects of chromium on glucose, insulin, and Hb A1c." Althius et al (2002). 'Glucose and insulin responses to dietary chromium supplements: a meta-analysis.' American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 76/1, 148-55.#
cinnamon1diabetesdiabetesplant / herb4851900Cinnamon is no more effective than placebo in controlling glucose levels."We found two prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, peer-reviewed clinical trials and one prospective, placebo-controlled, peer-reviewed clinical trial that evaluated the efficacy of cinnamon supplementation in patients with type 2 diabetes; a total of 164 patients were involved in these trials. Two of the studies reported modest improvements in lowering blood glucose levels with cinnamon supplementation in small patient samples. One trial showed no significant difference between cinnamon and placebo in lowering blood glucose levels. Overall, cinnamon was well tolerated. These data suggest that cinnamon has a possible modest effect in lowering plasma glucose levels in patients with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes. However, clinicians are strongly urged to refrain from recommending cinnamon supplementation in place of the proven standard of care, which includes lifestyle modifications, oral antidiabetic agents, and insulin therapy." Pham et al (2007). 'Cinnamon supplementation in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.' Pharmacotherapy 27/4, 595-59. PMID: 17381386."The results of this study [60 subjects with type 2 diabetes, 30 men, 30 women] demonstrate that intake of 1, 3, or 6 g of cinnamon per day reduces serum glucose, triglyceride, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes and suggest that the inclusion of cinnamon in the diet of people with type 2 diabetes will reduce risk factors associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases." Khan et al (2003). 'Cinnamon improves glucose and lipids of people with type 2 diabetes.' Diabetes Care 26/12, 3215–38. PMID 14633804."Whilst definitive conclusions cannot be drawn regarding the use of cinnamon as an antidiabetic therapy, it does possess antihyperglycaemic properties and potential to reduce postprandial blood glucose levels. Further research is required to confirm a possible correlation between baseline FBG and blood glucose reduction and to assess the potential to reduce pathogenic diabetic complications with cinnamon supplementation." Kirkham et al (2009). 'The potential of cinnamon to reduce blood glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance.' Diabetes Obes. Metab. 11/12, 1100-13. PMID: 19930003.
coconut oil4obesitycardio, general healthplant / herb2057970030ml of coconut oil per day might help to reduce waist size, possibly because the fat in coconut oil isn't easily stored. study of 40 women aged 20-40 tested the effect of daily coconut oil vs soy bean oil, while following a balanced diet and exercising. "Energy intake and amount of carbohydrate ingested by both groups diminished over the trial, whereas the consumption of protein and fibre increased and lipid ingestion remained unchanged. At [1 week before intervention] there were no differences in biochemical or anthropometric characteristics between the groups, whereas at [1 week after intervention] group C [coconut group] presented a higher level of HDL and a lower LDL:HDL ratio. Reductions in BMI were observed in both groups at T2, but only group C exhibited a reduction in [waist circumference]. Group S [soy bean oil] presented an increase in total cholesterol, LDL and LDL:HDL ratio, whilst HDL diminished. Such alterations were not observed in group C. It appears that dietetic supplementation with coconut oil does not cause dyslipidemia and seems to promote a reduction in abdominal obesity." Assunçao et al (2009). 'Effects of dietary coconut oil on the biochemical and anthropometric profiles of women presenting abdominal obesity.' Lipids 44/7, 593-601. PMID: 19437058."This controlled crossover study compared the effects of a high fat diet, a low fat diet, both based on coconut oil, and a diet with a high content of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and PUFA on diurnal postprandial levels of some hemostatic variables (n = 11) and fasting levels of Lp(a) (n = 25). In conclusion, our results indicate that a coconut oil-based diet lowers postprandial t-PA antigen concentration, and this may favorably affect the fibrinolytic system and the Lp(a) concentration compared with the HUFA-diet. The proportions of dietary saturated fatty acids more than the percentage of saturated fat energy seem to have a beneficial influence on Lp(a) levels." Müller et al (2003). PMID: 14608053.
coffee6heart diseasecardioplant / herb193895000A metastudy found that the more coffee a person drinks, the lower their risk of cardiovascular disease. The optimum amount of coffee for this benefit was 3-5 per day. and Prevention
coffee2alzheimer's disease, dementiamental healthplant / herb19313895000Caffiene appears to slow cognitive decline and prevent Alzheimer's. But the results are not definitive. et al 2010
colostrinin1alzheimer's diseasemental healthcompoundOTW0.0014384A few small human studies suggest possible effects on Alzheimers. Journal of Nutritional Health and Aging results we obtained showed that Colostrinin induced slight but statistically significant improvement or stabilization of the health status of the patients in the trial. The adverse reactions observed, if any, were remarkably mild, including anxiety, logorrhea, and insomnia, and subsided spontaneously within a short period of time (3-4 days). Med Sci Monit. 2002 Oct;8(10):PI93-6.Beneficial effects of PRP/Colostrinin were shown for the first time in double-blind placebo-controlled trials and long-term open-label studies. The results were confirmed in multicenter clinical trials. A very important property of PRP/Colostrinin is the prevention of Abeta aggregation and the disruption of already existing aggregates. The same properties were expressed by one of PRP's components, a nonapeptide (NP). Moreover, PRP modulates neurite outgrowth, suppresses uncontrolled activation of cells, reduces 4-HNE-mediated cellular damage, and modulates expression in cellular redox regulation, cell proliferation, and differentiation. Its biological response modifying activity can play an important role in its use in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. Curr Alzheimer Res. 2010 Jun;7(4):323-33.
CoQ10ubiquinol3blood pressurecardioenzyme12.610400CoQ10 might help with heart conditions. However, the evidence is limited and contradictory."We conclude that coenzyme Q10 has the potential in hypertensive patients to lower systolic blood pressure by up to 17 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure by up to 10 mm Hg without significant side effects." Rosenfeldt et al (2007). 'Coenzyme Q10 in the treatment of hypertension: a meta-analysis of the clinical trials Coenzyme Q10 and hypertension.' Journal of Human Hypertension 21, 297-306.#
CoQ10ubiquinol3diabetesdiabetesenzyme12.610400CoQ10 improves insulin secretion in those with type 2 diabetes. However, human trials have been tiny."Data are insufficient to recommend use of coenzyme Q10 for improved glycemic control in diabetes mellitus." Bonakdar and Guarneri (2005). 'Coenzyme Q10'. Am. Fam. Physician 72/6,1065-70.#
CoQ10ubiquinol1migrainepainenzyme12.610400Some tentative evidence that CoQ10 might affect migraine sensitivity. But much more research needed. a study of 42 patients, CoQ10 was superior to placebo for attack-frequency, headache-days and days-with-nausea in the third treatment month and well tolerated. Sándor et al (2005). PMID: 15728298.#
cranberrycranberry juice, cranberries1urinary tract infectionsurinary, womenplant / herb19.135100There is no statistically significant evidence that cranberry juice or supplements prevent UTIs."This review identified 10 studies (1049 participants) comparing cranberry products with placebo, juice or water. There was some evidence to show that cranberries (juice and capsules) can prevent recurrent infections in women. However, the evidence for elderly men and women was less clear, and there is evidence that is not effective in people who need catheterisation. Many people in the trials stopped drinking the juice, suggesting it may not be a popular intervention. In addition it is not clear how long cranberry juice needs to be taken to be effective or what the required dose might be." Jepson and Craig (2008). 'Cranberries for preventing urinary tract infections. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 1. CD001321."The Panel concludes that the evidence provided is not sufficient to establish a cause and effect relationship between the consumption of Ocean Spray cranberry products® and the reduction of the risk of UTI in women by inhibiting the adhesion of certain bacteria in the urinary tract.""Nine trials of cranberry products met the inclusion criteria. In four good quality randomised controlled trials (RCTs), cranberry products significantly reduced the incidence of symptomatic UTIs in 12 months compared with placebo/control. Five trials were not included in the meta-analyses due to the lack of appropriate data. However, only one reported a significant result. Side effects were common, and losses to followup/withdrawals in several of the trials were high (> 40%). There is some evidence from four good quality RCTs that cranberry juice may decrease the number of symptomatic UTIs over a 12-month period, particularly in women with recurrent UTIs. It is uncertain whether it is effective in other susceptible groups."
creatine & CoQ10 3cognitionmental healthcompound13.95810Creatine doesn't have a significant effect in those with normal brain function, but it can benefit those with impaired brain function when combined with CoQ10. Neurology"We tested the hypothesis that oral creatine supplementation (5 g d(-1) for six weeks) would enhance intelligence test scores and working memory performance in 45 young adult, vegetarian subjects in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over design. Creatine supplementation had a significant positive effect on both working memory (backward digit span) and intelligence (Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices), both tasks that require speed of processing." Rae et al (2003). 'Oral creatine monohydrate supplementation improves cognitive performance; a placebo-controlled, double-blind cross-over trial.' Proc. Biol. Sci. 270/1529, 2147-50. "This study used a new form of creatine--creatine ethyl ester--to investigate whether supplementation would improve performance in five cognitive tasks, using a double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Creatine dosing led to an improvement over the placebo condition on several measures. Although creatine seems to facilitate cognition on some tasks, these results require replication using objective measures of compliance." Ling et al (2009). PMID: 19773644."The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of creatine supplementation on the cognitive performance of elderly people. [...] Results showed a significant effect of creatine supplementation on all tasks except backward number recall. It was concluded that creatine supplementation aids cognition in the elderly." McMorris et al (2007). PMID: 17828627.
dandeliondandelion soup3tonsilitisinfectionsplant / herb8.821600Dandelion might have antimicrobial properties, which could help with throat infections. Health Care20120#
devil's claw4arthritismusculoskeletalplant / herb1.16490Devil's Claw extract can reduce lower back pain by blocking the pathways that cause joint inflammation. results of an open clinical study in 75 patients suggest that this Devil's claw extract has a clinically beneficial effect in the treatment of arthrosis of the hip or knee. Wegener and Lüpke (2003). 'Treatment of patients with arthrosis of hip or knee with an aqueous extract of devil's claw (Harpagophytum procumbens DC.).' Phytotherapy Res. 17/10, 1165-72. PMID: 14669250. "Fourteen studies were identified: eight observational studies; 2 comparator trials (1 open, the other randomized to assess clinical effectiveness); and 4 double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomized controlled trials to assess efficacy. Many of the published trials lacked certain important methodological quality criteria. However, the data from the higher quality studies suggest that Devil's Claw appeared effective in the reduction of the main clinical symptom of pain. The assessment of safety is limited by the small populations generally evaluated in the clinical studies. From the current data, Devil's Claw appears to be associated with minor risk (relative to NSAIDs), but further long-term assessment is required." Brien et al (2006). 'Devil's Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) as a treatment for osteoarthritis: a review of efficacy and safety.' J. Altern. Complem. Med. 12/10, 981-93. PMID: 17212570.#
DHEA3memory in young mencognition, mencompoundOTW3.732700DHEA might improve memory in young men."METHODS: Twenty-four healthy young men were treated with a 7-day course of oral DHEA (150 mg b.d.) or placebo in a double blind, random, crossover and balanced order design. CONCLUSIONS: DHEA treatment improved memory recollection and mood and decreased trough cortisol levels. These findings are distinctive, being the first to show such beneficial effects of DHEA on memory in healthy young men." Alhaj et al (2006). PMID: 16231168.
DHEA1ageinggeneral healthcompound3.732700DHEA has no beneficial impact on body composition, performance etc."METHODS: We performed a 2-year, placebo-controlled, randomized, double-blind study involving 87 elderly men with low levels of the sulfated form of DHEA and bioavailable testosterone and 57 elderly women with low levels of sulfated DHEA. CONCLUSIONS: Neither DHEA nor low-dose testosterone replacement in elderly people has physiologically relevant beneficial effects on body composition, physical performance, insulin sensitivity, or quality of life. ( number, NCT00254371 [].)." Nair et al (2006). PMID: 17050889.
dong quai0menopause in breast cancer patientscancer, reproductiveplant / herb0.65040Long term safety data is non-existent. May increase risk of cancer. et al. 2005
echinacea3coldsinfectionsplant / herb3.820500Echinacea might have a slight impact on preventing and treating colds, but the results are statistically insignificant."Sixteen trials including a total of 22 comparisons of an Echinacea preparation and a control group (19 with placebo, 2 with no treatment, 1 with another herbal preparation) met the inclusion criteria. All trials except one were described as double-blind. The majority had reasonable to good methodological quality. [...] CONCLUSIONS: Echinacea preparations tested in clinical trials differ greatly. There is some evidence that preparations based on the aerial parts of Echinacea purpurea might be effective for the early treatment of colds in adults but results are not fully consistent. Beneficial effects of other Echinacea preparations, and for preventative purposes might exist but have not been shown in independently replicated, rigorous randomized trials" Linde et al (2006). 'Echinacea for preventing and treating the common cold.' Cochrane Database Syst. Rev. CD000530. PMID: 16437427.A meta-analysis of 14 studies found "Echinacea decreased the odds of developing the common cold by 58% and the duration of a cold by 1.4 days. Similarly, significant reductions were maintained in subgroup analyses limited to Echinaguard/Echinacin use, concomitant supplement use, method of cold exposure, Jadad scores less than 3, or use of a fixed-effects model. Published evidence supports echinacea's benefit in decreasing the incidence and duration of the common cold." Shah et al (2007). Lancet Infect. Dis. 7/7, 473-80. PMID: 17597571.#
egg shell membrane5joints, arthritisgeneral healthotherOTW0.5312700Egg shell membrane eases joints by increasing cell production and decreasing inflammation. 500mg a day gives rapid results.
elderberry2lipid and antioxidant statuscardioplant / herbOTW5.49800Elderberry might be effective for lowering blood pressure. More research is needed to confirm this - but we can't find any studies since 2004.dodgy journal"DESIGN: Study A: The randomized, placebo-controlled trial for studying the effect of anthocyanes on lipid and antioxidant status, 34 subjects took capsules with 400 mg spray-dried powder containing 10% anthocyanes t.i.d. equivalent to 5 ml elderberry juice for 2 weeks. A subgroup of 14 subjects continued for an additional week to test for resistance to oxidation of LDL. Study B: To investigate the short-term effects on serum lipid concentrations, six subjects took a single dose of 50 ml of elderberry juice (equivalent to 10 capsules) along with a high-fat breakfast. CONCLUSIONS: Elderberry spray-dried extract at a low dose exerts a minor effect on serum lipids and antioxidative capacity. Higher, but nutritionally relevant doses might significantly reduce postprandial serum lipids." Murkovic et al (2004). 'Effects of elderberry juice on fasting and postprandial serum lipids and low-density lipoprotein oxidation in healthy volunteers: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study.' Eur. J. Clin. Nutr. 58/2, 244-49. PMID: 14749743.
elderberry1fluinfectionsplant / herbOTW5.49800Small studies indicate that elderberry may support a faster recovery from flu symptoms, but larger trials are needed. Horticulturae"Several in vitro studies together with two exploratory studies in humans and one open study in chimpanzees indicate that the aqueous elderberry extract Sambucol may be useful for the treatment of viral influenza infections. These promising effects of elderberry fruit preparations from experimental and clinical studies should be backed by more rigorous studies before these preparations are recommended in the prevention of diseases and in treatment schedules." Vlachojannis et al (2010). PMID: 19548290."Sixty patients (aged 18-54 years) suffering from influenza-like symptoms for 48 h or less were enrolled in this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study during the influenza season of 1999-2000 in Norway. Patients received 15 ml of elderberry or placebo syrup four times a day for 5 days, and recorded their symptoms using a visual analogue scale. Symptoms were relieved on average 4 days earlier and use of rescue medication was significantly less in those receiving elderberry extract compared with placebo. Elderberry extract seems to offer an efficient, safe and cost-effective treatment for influenza. These findings need to be confirmed in a larger study."
evening primrose oil1PMSreproductive, womenplant / herb10.922300Evening primrose oil is no more effective than placebo. of Psychosomatic Obstetrics and Gynecology"A systematic literature search of clinical trials of evening primrose oil (EPO) for the treatment of the premenstrual syndrome (PMS) was carried out with a view to performing a meta-analysis. Only seven placebo-controlled trials were found but only in five trials was randomization clearly indicated. Inconsistent scoring and response criteria made statistical pooling and hence a rigorous meta-analysis inappropriate. The two most well-controlled studies failed to show any beneficial effects for EPO, although because the trials were relatively small modest effects cannot be excluded. Nonetheless, on current evidence EPO is of little value in the management of premenstrual syndrome." Budeiri et al (1996). PMID: 8721802."The therapeutic effectiveness of evening primrose oil (Efamol, Vita-Glow) in the relief of 10 symptoms associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) as well as menstrual symptoms was studied in 38 women. The prospective trial was randomised, double-blind and placebo-controlled and was crossed-over after three cycles. Although the results showed an improvement in symptoms of PMS during the trial, no significant differences in the scoring between the active and placebo groups were found over six cycles. No "carry-over" effect of active medication was observed; the beneficial effect on all symptoms (psychological, fluid retention, breast) was rapid, the scores decreasing in the first cycle but increasing slightly at the change-over period after the third cycle, irrespective of whether the active or placebo medication was next given. These findings indicate that the improvement experienced by these women with moderate PMS was solely a placebo effect."#
feverfew5migrainepainplant / herb0.47080Feverfew reduces migraine frequency by just over half a migraine a month."MAIN RESULTS: Five trials (343 patients) met the inclusion criteria. Results from these trials were mixed and did not convincingly establish that feverfew is efficacious for preventing migraine. Only mild and transient adverse events were reported in the included trials. REVIEWER'S CONCLUSIONS: There is insufficient evidence from randomised, double-blind trials to suggest an effect of feverfew over and above placebo for preventing migraine. It appears from the data reviewed that feverfew presents no major safety problems." Pittler and Ernst (2004). 'Feverfew for preventing migraine.' Cochrane Database Syst. Rev. CD002286. PMID: 14973986.The efficacy and tolerability of a CO(2)-extract of feverfew (MIG-99, 6.25 mg t.i.d.) for migraine prevention were investigated in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre, parallel-group study. MIG-99 was found effective and shows a favourable benefit-risk ratio. Diener et al (2005). 'Efficacy and safety of 6.25 mg t.i.d. feverfew CO2-extract (MIG-99) in migraine prevention--a randomized, double-blind, multicentre, placebo-controlled study.' Cephalagia 25/11, 1031-41. PMID: 16232154.#
fish oil / omega 31Alzheimer's, dementiamental healthcompound8070800In the largest and longest study of its kind, researchers found that fish oil/omega 3 had no statistically significant impact on cognitive decline. Journal of the American Medical Association"One hundred seventy-four patients fulfilled the trial. At baseline, mean values for the Clinical Dementia Rating Scale, MMSE [Mini Mental State Examination], and cognitive portion of the Alzheimer Disease Assessment Scale in the 2 randomized groups were similar. At 6 months, the decline in cognitive functions as assessed by the latter 2 scales did not differ between the groups. However, in a subgroup (n = 32) with very mild cognitive dysfunction, a significant reduction in MMSE decline rate was observed in the omega-3 fatty acid-treated group compared with the placebo group. A similar arrest in decline rate was observed between 6 and 12 months in this placebo subgroup when receiving omega-3 fatty acid supplementation. CONCLUSION: Administration of omega-3 fatty acid in patients with mild to moderate AD did not delay the rate of cognitive decline [...]. However, positive effects were observed in a small group of patients with very mild AD." Freund-Levy et al (2006). PMID: 17030655.In a double-blinded placebo-controlled study of 23 participants, "There was no significant difference in the cognitive portion of the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS-cog) change during follow-up in these two groups. However, the omega-3 fatty acids group showed significant improvement in ADAS-cog compared to the placebo group in participants with mild cognitive impairment, which was not observed in those with Alzheimer's disease." Chiu et al (2008). PMID: 18573585. "There is no evidence that dietary or supplemental omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) reduces the risk of cognitive impairment or dementia in healthy elderly persons without pre-existing dementia". a double-blinded, placebo-controlled study of 295 participants with AD, using DHA only, "Supplementation with DHA compared with placebo did not slow the rate of cognitive and functional decline in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer disease."
fish oil / omega 34colorectal cancercancercompound8070800It is thought that omega 3 reduces the risk of colorectal cancer and is effective in its treatment. British Society of Gastroenterology abstract: "Fatty acid effects on colorectal cancer risk were examined in a national prospective case-control study in Scotland (1999–2006), including 1,455 incident cases and 1,455 matched controls. [...] Significant dose-dependent reductions in risk were associated with increased consumption of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids." From full text: "the highest total fish consumers showed a 24% lower risk for developing colorectal cancer as compared to those with the lowest intakes of fish (the lower quartile). With respect to oily fish consumption, those consuming at the highest quartile (upper 25% of the population) exhibited an approximate 34% lower risk for developing colorectal cancer relative to those in the lowest quartile (lower 25% of the population) for oily fish consumption." Theodoratou et al (2007). 'Dietary Fatty Acids and Colorectal cancer: A Case-Control Study', Am. J. Epidem. 166/2, 181-95. "The authors conducted an extensive review (meta-analysis) of 14 studies combined where the frequency of fish consumption in population studies was correlated with the incidence of colorectal cancer. The compilation of these 14 cohort studies indicated that the pooled relative risks for colorectal cancer was 12% lower (relative risk of 0.88) for the highest as compared to the lowest fish consumption category. The pooled relative risks were 22% lower for women and 6% lower for men." Geelen et al (2007). 'Fish Consumption, n-3 Fatty Acids, and Colorectal Cancer: A Meta-Analysis of Prospective Cohort Studies', Am. J. Epidem. 166/10, 1116-25."Mortality data for breast and colorectal cancer in 24 European countries were correlated with current fish and fish oil consumption and with consumption 10 and 23 years previously. In males there was an inverse correlation between colorectal cancer mortality and current intake of fish, a weaker correlation with fish consumption 10 years earlier and none with consumption 23 years earlier. The data were not statistically significant in females. There was no correlation at all between breast cancer mortality and fish or fish oil consumption at any time. It is concluded that fish consumption is associated with protection against the later promotional stages of colorectal carcinogenesis, but not with the early initiation stages." Caygill and Hill (1995). 'Fish, n-3 fatty acids and human colorectal and breast cancer mortality', Eur. J. Cancer Prev. 4/4.,_n_3_fatty_acids_and_human_colorectal_and.8.aspx#
fish oil / omega 33cardiovascular diseasecardiocompound8070800Early studies suggested taking fish oil might lower heart disease risk. More recent, larger studies suggest it doesn't. England Journal of Medicine the 12,513 patients enrolled, 6244 were randomly assigned to n−3 fatty acids and 6269 to placebo. With a median of 5 years of follow-up, the primary end point occurred in 1478 of 12,505 patients included in the analysis (11.8%), of whom 733 of 6239 (11.7%) had received n−3 fatty acids and 745 of 6266 (11.9%) had received placebo (adjusted hazard ratio with n−3 fatty acids, 0.97; 95% confidence interval, 0.88 to 1.08; P=0.58). The same null results were observed for all the secondary end points. In a large general-practice cohort of patients with multiple cardiovascular risk factors, daily treatment with n−3 fatty acids did not reduce cardiovascular mortality and morbidity. supplementation with 1 g of n–3 fatty acids did not reduce the rate of cardiovascular events in patients at high risk for cardiovascular events."We identified 11 studies that included a total of 39,044 patients. Dietary supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids significantly reduced the risk of cardiovascular deaths, sudden cardiac death, all-cause mortality and nonfatal cardiovascular events. The mortality benefit was largely due to the studies which enrolled high risk patients, while the reduction in nonfatal cardiovascular events was noted in the moderate risk patients (secondary prevention only). CONCLUSIONS: Dietary supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids should be considered in the secondary prevention of cardiovascular events." Marik and Varon (2009). 'Omega-3 dietary supplements and the risk of cardiovascular events: a systematic review.' Clin. Cardiology 32/7, 365-72. PMID: 19609891."Data synthesis: 12 studies totalling 32,779 patients met the inclusion criteria. The dose-response relation for DHA and EPA on reduction in deaths from cardiac causes was not significant. Conclusions: Fish oil supplementation was associated with a significant reduction in deaths from cardiac causes but had no effect on arrhythmias or all cause mortality. Evidence to recommend an optimal formulation of EPA or DHA to reduce these outcomes is insufficient. Fish oils are a heterogeneous product, and the optimal formulations for DHA and EPA remain unclear." León et al (2008). 'Effect of fish oil on arrhythmias and mortality: systematic review.' BMJ 2008.
"Results: Of 15,159 titles and abstracts assessed, 48 RCTs (36,913 participants) and 41 cohort studies were analysed. The trial results were inconsistent. The pooled estimate showed no strong evidence of reduced risk of total mortality or combined cardiovascular events in participants taking additional omega 3 fats. The few studies at low risk of bias were more consistent, but they showed no effect of omega 3 on total mortality or cardiovascular events. When data from the subgroup of studies of long chain omega 3 fats were analysed separately, total mortality and cardiovascular events were not clearly reduced. Conclusion: Long chain and shorter chain omega 3 fats do not have a clear effect on total mortality, combined cardiovascular events, or cancer." Hooper et al (2006). 'Risks and benefits of omega 3 fats for mortality, cardiovascular disease, and cancer: systematic review.' BMJ."There is not enough evidence to say that people should stop taking rich sources of omega 3 fats, but further high quality trials are needed to confirm the previously suggested protective effect of omega 3 fats for those at increased cardiovascular risk". Hooper et al (2009). 'Omega 3 fatty acids for prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease.' Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2004, Issue 4."The authors concluded that the overall evidence suggests that increasing consumption of omega-3 fatty acids as DHA/EPA from fish or fish oil, but not ALA , significantly reduces the rates of all-cause mortality, cardiac and sudden death, and possibly stroke. They also observed from their overall analyses of the relevant published literature that evidence for beneficial effects of fish oil is much stronger in secondary settings (i.e., in those with a previous history of cardiovascular disease), as compared to those in primary-prevention settings (populations with no history of cardiovascular disease)". Wang et al (2006). 'n-3 Fatty acids from fish or fish-oil supplements, but not alpha-linolenic acid, benefit cardiovascular disease outcomes in primary- and secondary-prevention studies: a systematic review.' Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 84/1, 5-17. PMID: 16825676."In the present review, the authors outline results from the three large controlled trials on 32,000 participants overall who were randomized to received either placebo (control) supplementation or supplements providing DHA+EPA. These trials showed overall reductions in cardiovascular events of 19-45 % which the current authors considered to be the most compelling evidence for the cardiovascular benefit provided by omega-3 fatty acids." Lee et al (2008). 'Omega-3 fatty acids for cardioprotection', Mayo Clin. Proc. 83/3, 324-32. PMID: 18316000."CONCLUSIONS: Dietary supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids reduces the incidence of sudden cardiac death in patients with MI, but may have adverse effects in angina patients." Zhao, Y.-T., Q. Chen, et al. (2009). 'Prevention of sudden cardiac death with omega-3 fatty acids in patients with coronary heart disease: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.' Annals of Medicine 99999/1, 1-10. PMID: 19148838.
fish oil / omega 33depression, mental illnessmental healthcompound8070800Depressed patients often have reduced levels of omega 3. However, whether or not supplementing with omega 3 is an effective treatment is unknown. American Journal of Psychiatry5"While far from robust, there is enough epidemiological, laboratory and clinical evidence to suggest that omega-3 fatty acids may play a role in certain cases of depression." Logan (2004). 'Omega-3 fatty acids and major depression: A primer for the mental health professional.' Lipids Health Dis. 3, 25. PMCID: PMC533861.
"Results. Ten articles - three longitudinal cohort studies, five randomized controlled trials and two pilot trials- that met selection criteria were reviewed. Six found no association, two found mixed results, and two found a positive association between omega-3 PUFAs and reduced incidence of maternal perinatal depression. Some of the larger studies and those that found a positive effect were more likely to be using higher doses, close to 2 g of docosahexaeonic acid (DHA)+ eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and began the supplementation earlier in pregnancy. Conclusions. Future RCTs to investigate the role of PUFA supplementation and risk for maternal perinatal depression should begin supplementation early in pregnancy and use a dosage closer to 2 g of DHA + EPA." Wojcicki and Heyman (2011). PMID: 20925595."Epidemiological studies have demonstrated a positive association between omega-3 deficits and mood disorders. As for treatment, there is convincing evidence that add-on omega-3 fatty acids to standard antidepressant pharmacotherapy results in improved mood. There is no evidence that fatty acid monotherapy has a mood-elevating effect, with a possible exception for childhood depression.""The aim of the current study was to provide an updated meta-analysis of all double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized controlled trials examining the effect of omega3 LC-PUFA supplementation in which depressive symptoms were a reported outcome. The study also aimed to specifically test the differential effectiveness of EPA versus DHA through meta-regression and subgroup analyses. [...] Two hundred forty-one studies were identified, of which 28 met the above inclusion criteria and were therefore included in the subsequent meta-analysis. [...] The current meta-analysis provides evidence that EPA may be more efficacious than DHA in treating depression. However, owing to the identified limitations of the included studies, larger, well-designed, randomized controlled trials of sufficient duration are needed to confirm these findings." Martins (2009)."From full text: ""There is growing evidence that suboptimal intakes of n-3 PUFA may be associated with psychopathology over the lifespan and include highly prevalent disorders that present a growing public health concern. Most clinical trials have been conducted with major depressive illness in adulthood and in childhood disorders; there are growing numbers of interventions with cognitive decline in older adulthood. Although the causes of these mental health problems are complex and multifactorial, even from a nutritional perspective alone, dietary and lifestyle factors including n-3 PUFA present modifiable risk factors that can be accessed relatively easily by individuals. However, findings of clinical trials have been inconsistent and in many cases inconclusive; methodological differences between studies need to be critically evaluated before drawing conclusions about the efficacy or otherwise of n-3 PUFA in alleviating symptoms"" Sinn et al (2010). 'Oiling the Brain: A Review of Randomized Controlled Trials of Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Psychopathology across the Lifespan.' Nutrients 2/2,128-70."Epidemiological studies indicate an association between depression and low dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids, and biochemical studies have shown reduced levels of omega-3 fatty acids in red blood cell membranes in both depressive and schizophrenic patients. Five of six double-blind, placebo-controlled trials in schizophrenia, and four of six such trials in depression, have reported therapeutic benefit from omega-3 fatty acids in either the primary or secondary statistical analysis, particularly when EPA is added on to existing psychotropic medication. [...] . The evidence to date supports the adjunctive use of omega-3 fatty acids in the management of treatment unresponsive depression and schizophrenia. [...] However, as the clinical research evidence is preliminary, large, and definitive randomised controlled trials similar to those required for the licensing of any new pharmacological treatment are needed." Peet and Stokes (2005)."Some positive benefits were found for depressive symptoms "
fish oil / omega 33low sperm countreproductivecompound79.7498000A small study of 211 men it was found that omega 3 supplementation significantly increased sperm count."Fish oil preparations and/or intake of oily fish are recommended as primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease and sudden cardiac death. Large, ongoing trials will further elucidate the presumed favorable effects of EPA/DHA in heart failure and diabetes. This review provides a summary of the physiological mechanisms of the action of EPA and DHA and highlights the epidemiological evidence for a reduction in cardiac events and mortality." Pauwels and Kostkiewicz (2008). 'Fatty acid facts, Part III: Cardiovascular disease, or, a fish diet is not fishy.' Drug News Perspect. 21/10, 552/61. PMID: 19221636.
fish oil / omega 32cancer symptomscancercompound8070800Fish oil can counter chemotherpay-related damage to white blood cells."We performed a systematic review of the literature in order to issue recommendations on the clinical use of n-3 FA in the cancer setting. Seventeen studies met the inclusion criteria; eight were of high quality. Our findings suggest that administration of n-3 FA (EPA and DHA) in doses of at least 1.5 g/day for a prolonged period of time to patients with advanced cancer is associated with an improvement in clinical, biological and QoL parameters." Colomer et al (2007). 'N-3 fatty acids, cancer and cachexia: a systematic review of the literature.' Br. J. Nutr. 97/5, 823-31. PMID: 17408522."PURPOSE: To determine whether high doses of fish oil, administered over 2 weeks, improve symptoms in patients with advanced cancer and decreased weight and appetite. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Sixty patients were randomly assigned to fish oil capsules or placebo. CONCLUSION: Fish oil did not significantly influence appetite, tiredness, nausea, well-being, caloric intake, nutritional status, or function after 2 weeks compared with placebo in patients with advanced cancer and loss of both weight and appetite." Bruera et al (2003). 'Effect of fish oil on appetite and other symptoms in patients with advanced cancer and anorexia/cachexia: a double-blind, placebo-controlled study.' J. Clin. Oncol. 21/1, 129-34. PMID: 12506181. "Eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic n-3 fatty acids from fish oil can help in the management of persistent chronic inflammatory states, but treatment's compliance is generally poor. We exclusively evaluated 12 patients for compliance. After 6 wk of treatment, patients receiving fish oil + placebo or fish oil + celecoxib showed significantly more appetite, less fatigue, and lower C-reactive protein (C-RP) values than their respective baselines values. Additionally, patients in the fish oil + celecoxib group also improved their body weight and muscle strength compared to baseline values. Comparing both groups, patients receiving fish oil + celecoxib showed significantly lower C-RP levels, higher muscle strength and body weight than patients receiving fish oil + placebo." Cerchietti et al (2007). 'Effects of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic n-3 fatty acids from fish oil and preferential Cox-2 inhibition on systemic syndromes in patients with advanced lung cancer.' Nutr. Cancer 59/1, 14-20. PMID: 17927497.
fish oil / omega 32psychosismental healthcompound8070800In one study, supplementation delayed the onset of psychosis in those on track to develop certain mental health conditions. Communications
fish oil / omega 32child intelligencemental health, childrencompound8070800Fish oil supplementation has a very minor positive impact on some measures of learning and performance."This study investigated the effects of omega-3 supplementation in 450 children aged 8-10 years old from a mainstream school population, using a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled design. Participants were supplemented with either active supplements (containing docosahexaenoic acid, DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid, EPA) or a placebo for 16 weeks. Despite the wide range of cognitive and behavioural outcome measures employed, only three significant differences between groups were found after 16 weeks, one of which was in favour of the placebo condition. Exploring the associations between changes in fatty acid levels and changes in test and questionnaire scores also produced equivocal results." Kirby et al (2010). PMID: 20171055."METHODS: Pregnant women were recruited in week 18 of pregnancy to take 10 mL of cod liver oil or corn oil until 3 months after delivery. A total of 590 pregnant women were recruited to the study, and 341 mothers took part in the study until giving birth. All infants of these women were scheduled for assessment of cognitive function at 6 and 9 months of age, and 262 complied with the request. As part of the protocol, 135 subjects from this population were invited for intelligence testing with the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC) at 4 years of age. Of the 135 invited children, 90 came for assessment. Six children did not complete the examination. RESULTS: Children who were born to mothers who had taken cod liver oil (n = 48) during pregnancy and lactation scored higher on the Mental Processing Composite of the K-ABC at 4 years of age as compared with children whose mothers had taken corn oil. The children's mental processing scores at 4 years of age correlated significantly with maternal intake of DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid during pregnancy. In a multiple regression model, maternal intake of DHA during pregnancy was the only variable of statistical significance for the children's mental processing scores at 4 years of age. CONCLUSION: Maternal intake of very-long-chain n-3 PUFAs during pregnancy and lactation may be favorable for later mental development of children." Helland et al (2003). PMID: 12509593."METHODS: The mothers took 10 mL of cod liver oil or corn oil from week 18 of pregnancy until 3 months after delivery. Their children were tested with the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children at 7 years of age. RESULTS: We did not find any significant differences in scores on the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children test at 7 years of age between children whose mothers had taken cod liver oil (n = 82) or corn oil (n = 61). We observed, however, that maternal plasma phospholipid concentrations of alpha-linolenic acid and docosahexaenoic acid during pregnancy were correlated to sequential processing at 7 years of age. CONCLUSION: This study suggests that maternal concentration of n-3 very-long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids during pregnancy might be of importance for later cognitive function, such as sequential processing, although we observed no significant effect of n-3 fatty acid intervention on global IQs."
fish oil / omega 31asthmarespiratorycompound8070800Omega 3 might reduce asthma symptoms in children. Respiratory Journal
fish oil / omega 31diabetesdiabetescompound8070800Omega 3 probably has no beneficial effect for those with type 2 diabetes.
fish oil / omega 31Crohn's diseasedigestioncompound8070800Omega 3 probably has no beneficial effect for those with Crohn's Disease."Omega 3 fatty acids are safe but probably ineffective for maintenance of remission in CD. The existing data do not support routine maintenance treatment of Crohn's disease with omega 3 fatty acids." Turner et al (2009). 'Omega 3 fatty acids (fish oil) for maintenance of remission in Crohn's disease. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 1. CD006320."No significant change in or total or HDL cholesterol, HbA1c, fasting glucose, fasting insulin or body weight was observed." #
fish oil / omega 30prostate cancercancercompound8070800Recent studies have linked fish oil intake with increased prostate cancer risk. of the National Cancer Institutue.
flax seeds1breast cancercancer, womenplant / herb1035200Population studies indicate a slight possibility flaxeed could reduce breast cancer tumour growth. No controlled trials have been carried out. Causes ControlExamination of effects of dietary flaxseed on tumor biological markers and urinary lignan excretion in 32 postmenopausal patients with newly diagnosed breast cancer in a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial, showed that it has the potential to reduce tumor growth. Thompson et al (2005). 'Dietary Flaxseed Alters Tumor Biological Markers in Postmenopausal Breast Cancer', Clin. Cancer Res. 11, 3828.#
folic acid5birth defectschildrenvitamin25Folic acid helps to prevent birth defects, but timing of supplementation is important.
folic acid0cancercancervitamin9.3160000When combined with vitamin B12 can be associated with increased cancer risk. language summary: "This review confirms that folic acid supplementation prevents the first and second time occurrence of NTDs (neural tube defects) and shows there is not enough evidence to determine if folic acid prevents other birth defects. Information about the safety of other current and alternative supplementation schemes and any possible effects on other outcomes for mothers and babies is also lacking. This review of five trials, involving 6105 women (1949 with a history of a pregnancy affected by a NTD and 4156 with no history of NTDs), shows the protective effect of daily folic acid supplementation in doses ranging from 0.36 mg (360 µg) to 4 mg (4000 µg) a day, with and without other vitamins and minerals, before conception and up to 12 weeks of pregnancy, for preventing the recurrence of these diseases. There were insufficient data to evaluate the effects on other outcomes such as cleft lip and palate. More research is needed on different types of supplementation programmes and the use of different types of supplements (such as 5-methyl-tetrahydrofolate -5-MTHF), particularly in countries where folic acid fortification of staple foods like wheat or maize flour is not mandatory and where the prevalence of NTDs is still high." De-Regil LM, Fernández-Gaxiola AC, Dowswell T, Peña-Rosas JP. Effects and safety of periconceptional folate supplementation for preventing birth defects. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010, Issue 10. Art. No.: CD007950. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD007950.pub2.With a case-control study, we investigated whether periconceptional intake of supplemental or dietary folate reduced the risk of having a neural tube defect (NTD)-affected pregnancy. Mothers of 549 (88% of eligible) cases and 540 (88%) controls were interviewed in person about vitamin supplements used in either the 3 months before or the 3 months after conception and also about usual diet in the 3 months before conception. Women with any use of a folic acid-containing vitamin in the 3 months before conception had a lower risk of having an NTD-affected pregnancy. Any level of use in the first 3 months after conception resulted in a lowered risk as well. Reduced risks were less marked for Hispanics and were not observed among women who graduated from college. Modest reduced risks were noted among non-vitamin users whose estimated daily dietary intake of folate was more than 0.227 mg. We observed decreasing risk with increasing folate intake from combined dietary sources and vitamin supplements. A reduction in NTD risk associated with folate intake is consistent with other studies; however, the reduced risk may be particular to subsets of the population, primarily non-Hispanic women and women whose education does not exceed high school. Shaw et al (1995). 'Periconceptional vitamin use, dietary folate, and the occurrence of neural tube defects'. Epidemiology 6/3, 219–26. PMID 7619926.Mulinare et al (1988). 'Periconceptional use of multivitamins and the occurrence of neural tube defects.' Journal of the American Medical Association 260/21, 3141–45. PMID 3184392. ilunsky et al (1989). 'Multivitamin/folic acid supplementation in early pregnancy reduces the prevalence of neural tube defects.' Journal of the American Medical Association 262/20, 2847–52. PMID 2478730.Treatment with folic acid plus vitamin B12 was associated with increased cancer outcomes and all-cause mortality in patients with ischemic heart disease in Norway, where there is no folic acid fortification of foods. JAMA. 2009;302(19):2119-2126.
GABA1stress, anxietymental healthcompound1.3319000Low GABA levels are associated with PTSD, anxiety and panic disorders. No evidence that supplementation is an effective treatment. two studies of 13 and 8 subjects respectively, "The effect of orally administrated gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) on relaxation and immunity during stress has been investigated in humans. In conclusion, GABA could work effectively as a natural relaxant and its effects could be seen within 1 hour of its administration to induce relaxation and diminish anxiety. Moreover, GABA administration could enhance immunity under stress conditions." Abdou et al (2006). PMID: 16971751.
garlic1blood pressurecardioplant / herb86.4411Garlic might reduce blood pressure, but further research is required."RESULTS: Eleven of 25 studies included in the systematic review were suitable for meta-analysis. Meta-analysis of all studies showed a mean decrease for SBP in the garlic group compared to placebo. Regression analysis revealed a significant association between blood pressure at the start of the intervention and the level of blood pressure reduction. CONCLUSION: Our meta-analysis suggests that garlic preparations are superior to placebo in reducing blood pressure in individuals with hypertension." Ried et al (2008). PMID: 18554422."DESIGN: A double-blind parallel randomised placebo-controlled trial involving 50 patients whose routine clinical records in general practice documented treated but uncontrolled hypertension. CONCLUSION: Our trial suggests that aged garlic extract is superior to placebo in lowering systolic blood pressure similarly to current first line medications in patients with treated but uncontrolled hypertension."
garlic1cancer treatmentcancerplant / herb86.4115000 CarcinogenesisIn a randomized double-blind trial, administration of aged garlic extract to 50 patients with advanced cancer of the digestive system improved natural-killer cell activity, but caused no improvement in quality of life. Ishikawa et al (2006). 'Aged Garlic Extract Prevents a Decline of NK Cell Number and Activity in Patients with Advanced Cancer', J. Nutr. 136, 816-20S.#
garlic 3cancer preventioncancerplant / herb86.4115000Garlic might prevent certain cancers, but there is a lack of clinical trial evidence. The WHO recommends consuming at least one clove a day for general health benefits.
garlic 1coldsinfectionsplant / herb86.41115000There is insufficient clinical trial evidence regarding the effects of garlic in preventing or treating the common cold. Garlic for the common cold12012
ginger4nausea and vomitingdigestionplant / herb96.599600Ginger prevents nausea and vomitting for some people in certain circumstances."We have performed a systematic review of the evidence from randomized controlled trials for or against the efficacy of ginger for nausea and vomiting. Six studies met all inclusion criteria and were reviewed. Three on postoperative nausea and vomiting were identified and two of these suggested that ginger was superior to placebo and equally effective as metoclopramide. The pooled absolute risk reduction for the incidence of postoperative nausea, however, indicated a non-significant difference between the ginger and placebo groups for ginger 1 g taken before operation. One study was found for each of the following conditions: seasickness, morning sickness and chemotherapy-induced nausea. These studies collectively favoured ginger over placebo. [...] In summary, we found that ginger is a promising anti-emetic herbal remedy, but the clinical data to date are insufficient to draw firm conclusions. Further rigorous studies are needed to establish whether ginger is efficacious for clinical nausea and vomiting." Ernst and Pittler (2000). 'Efficacy of ginger for nausea and vomiting: a systematic review of randomised clinical trials.' British Journal of Anaesthesia 84/3, 367-67.;"Conclusion: From the presented data, ginger is as effective as dimenhydrinate in the treatment of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy and has fewer side effects." "CONCLUSIONS: Ginger provides no additional benefit for reduction of the prevalence or severity of acute or delayed CINV (chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting) when given with 5-HT3 receptor antagonists and/or aprepitant."
gingko biloba1dementiamental healthplant / herb8.337900There is insufficient clinical trial evidence for the use of ginkgo bilboa as a treatment for dementia."CONCLUSION: 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." Snitz et al (2009). PMID: 20040554.The effect of ginkgo extract was observed on 45 patients pulmonary interstitial fibrosis showed that occurrence of pulmonary infection was less in ginkgo treated group than that in the control group Ginkgo is effective in treating pulmonary interstitial fibrosis. [Article in Chinese] He 2005A randomized double-blind, monocenter study with 66 healthy elderly subjects was carried out to investigate the short-term effect of special ginkgo extract EGb 761 & the results suggest a positive effect of EGb 761 on subjective emotional well-being of healthy elderly persons. [Article in German] Cieza 2003A double-blind study with placebo and Ginkgo biloba in 48 men aged 60 -70 showed a reduction in blood viscosity, improved cerebral perfusion in specific areas and improved global cognitive functioning. Santos 2003Placebo-controlled, randomized, double-blind trial with 40 moderate dementia patients found that Ginkgo EGb 4 days per week for 4 weeks improved condition [Article in German] Haase 1996#
ginseng1cognitive performancemental healthplant / herb44.154400There is no convincing evidence for ginseng enhancing cognition in healthy people, and only low quality evidence that it helps dementia patients. ginseng improved performance and subjective feelings of mental fatigue during sustained mental activity in 30 healthy young adults and this effect may be related to the acute gluco-regulatory properties of the extract. Reay et al (2005). 'Single doses of Panax ginseng (G115) reduce blood glucose levels and improve cognitive performance during sustained mental activity'. J. Psychopharmacol. 19/4, 357-65.In a double-blind study cognitive & mood effects of 75 mg of extract of guarana (12% caffeine), 200 mg of Panax ginseng (G115), & their combination (75 mg/200 mg), were assessed in 28 healthy volunteers which showed that both ginseng & ginseng/guarana combination enhanced speed of memory task. Kennedy 2004Right cerebral blood flow, TCD and CT improved in 96% of 202 patients given Nao Li Shen (ginseng, gastrodia tuber, chuanxiong rhizome and red sage root) Lu 1997Antibody titre after flu vaccination was increased from 171 to 272 and number of flu cases dropped from 42 to 15 in the group taking 100 mg Ginsana for 12 weeks in a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind investigation of 227 people Scaglione 1996Exercise work load and maximal oxygen consumption were increased by ginseng in a double-blind, crossover study with 50 men taking, for 6 weeks, a preparation of ginseng extract, dimethylaminoethanol bitartrate, vitamins, minerals, and trace elements Pieralisi 1991#
glucosamine3arthritis, joint painmusculoskeletalcompound973600Studies using a specific brand of glucosamine (Rotta) found that patients' pain decreased. However, studies using other brands found no difference between glucosamine and placebo."OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of glucosamine, chondroitin, or the two in combination on joint pain and on radiological progression of disease in osteoarthritis of the hip or knee. Results: 10 trials in 3803 patients were included. Conclusions: Compared with placebo, glucosamine, chondroitin, and their combination do not reduce joint pain or have an impact on narrowing of joint space. Health authorities and health insurers should not cover the costs of these preparations, and new prescriptions to patients who have not received treatment should be discouraged." Wandel et al (2010). PMID: 20847017."CONCLUSIONS: There was evidence that glucosamine sulphate shows some clinical effectiveness in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee. No trial data came from the UK and caution should be exercised in generalising the findings to the UK health-care setting. Cost-effectiveness was not conclusively demonstrated. There was evidence to support the potential clinical impact of glucosamine sulphate. The value of information analysis identified three research priorities: QoL, structural outcomes and knee arthroplasty. The biological mechanism of glucosamine sulphate and chondroitin remains uncertain and, in particular, the proposal that the active substance may be sulphate should be explored further.""Design, Setting, and Participants: A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial conducted at Oslo University Hospital Outpatient Clinic, Oslo, Norway, with 250 patients older than 25 years of age with chronic low back pain (LBP) (>6 months) and degenerative lumbar osteoarthritis (OA). Conclusions: Among patients with chronic LBP and degenerative lumbar OA, 6-month treatment with oral glucosamine compared with placebo did not result in reduced pain-related disability after the 6-month intervention and after 1-year follow-up."
"Objective: This study was undertaken to evaluate the effect of glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate (CS), alone or in combination, as well as celecoxib and placebo on progressive loss of joint space width (JSW) in patients with knee OA. Conclusion: At 2 years, no treatment achieved a predefined threshold of clinically important difference in JSW loss as compared with placebo. However, knees with K/L grade 2 radiographic OA appeared to have the greatest potential for modification by these treatments.""Pain: The high quality studies showed that pain improved about the same whether people took glucosamine or fake pills. If all of the studies are examined (including low quality and old studies), then glucosamine improved pain more than fake pills. People who took fake pills had a pain score of 7 points on a 0 to 100 scale. Pain may improve by 10 more points with glucosamine than with fake pills.  Studies testing only the Rotta brand of glucosamine (including low quality and older studies) showed that glucosamine improved pain more than fake pills. People who took fake pills had a pain score of 6 points on a 0 to 20 scale. People who took the Rotta brand of glucosamine rated their pain 3 points lower than people who did not take glucosamine. Function: The high quality studies show that glucosamine improved function more than fake pills when measured by one type of scale, but improved the same amount as fake pills when measured by another scale. Studies testing only the Rotta brand of glucosamine (including low quality and older studies) showed that glucosamine improved function more than fake pills. People who took fake pills had a function score of 22 points on a 0 to 68 scale. People who took the Rotta brand of glucosamine had their ability to function improve by 2 points compared to people who did not take glucosamine."
glutaminel-glutamine1gastrointestinal disease in infantsdigestion, childrencompound3.8442000There is insufficient evidence to determine whether glutamine supplements are beneficial or harmful.
glutaminel-glutamine1morbidity and mortality in preterm infantschildrencompound3.8442000There is no strong evidence that glutamine supplementation reduced the risk of death or infection, or had any impact on development.
goji berrywolfberry1eye healthgeneral healthplant / herb342030Supplementation for 90 days appeared to show some improvements in eye-health for seniors. But more research is needed. and Vision Science"Epidemiological studies provide some evidence that an increased consumption of lutein and zeaxanthin with the diet is associated with a lowered risk for age-related macular degeneration, a disease with increasing incidence in the elderly." Stahl (2005). PMID: 15604618."The aim of this study, which was a single-blinded, placebo-controlled, human intervention trial of parallel design, was to provide data on how fasting plasma zeaxanthin concentration changes as a result of dietary supplementation with whole wolfberries. [...] After supplementation, plasma zeaxanthin increased 2.5-fold. [...] This human supplementation trial shows that zeaxanthin in whole wolfberries is bioavailable and that intake of a modest daily amount markedly increases fasting plasma zeaxanthin levels. These new data will support further study of dietary strategies to maintain macular pigment density." Cheng et al (2005). PMID: 15705234.
grape seed extract1wound healing, swellingpainplant / herb428900Grape seed extract is being investigated for possible effect on wound healing. But no reliable or substantial studies have been carried out. Journal of Health Science"PATIENTS AND METHODS: Sixty-six eligible research volunteers with moderate or marked breast induration at a mean 10.8 years since radiotherapy for early breast cancer were randomised to active drug (n = 44) or placebo (n = 22). All patients were given grape seed proanthocyanidin extract (GSPE) 100 mg three times a day orally, or corresponding placebo capsules, for 6 months. RESULTS: At 12 months post-randomisation, there was no significant difference between treatment and control groups in terms of external assessments of tissue hardness, breast appearance or patient self-assessments of breast hardness, pain or tenderness. CONCLUSIONS: The study failed to show efficacy of orally-administered GSPE in patients with breast induration following radiotherapy for breast cancer." Brooker et al (2006). PMID: 16546280.
green tea3cancer preventioncancerplant / herb349874000The evidence is conflicting. However, drinking 3-5 cups a day might have general health benefits. language summary: "Fifty-one studies with more than 1.6 million participants, mainly of observational nature were included in this systematic review. Studies looked for an association between green tea consumption and cancer of the digestive tract, gynecological cancer including breast cancer, urological cancer including prostate cancer, lung cancer and cancer of the oral cavity. The majority of included studies were of medium to high methodological quality. The evidence that the consumption of green tea might reduce the risk of cancer was conflicting. This means, that drinking green tea remains unproven in cancer prevention, but appears to be safe at moderate, regular and habitual use." Boehm et al (2009). 'Green tea (Camellia sinensis) for the prevention of cancer', Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 3.#
green tea3cholesterolcardioplant / herb349874000Drinking green tea might help to reduce total cholesterol levels, but trials were small and exposed to bias."Consumption of green tea was associated with lower serum concentration of total cholesterol in [13,916] Japanese healthy workers age 40-69 years; however, green tea consumption was unrelated to serum HDL-cholesterol and triglycerides." Tokunaga et al (2002). 'Green tea consumption and serum lipids and lipoproteins in a population of healthy workers in Japan.' Ann. Epidemiol. 12/3 157-65. PMID: 11897173.A study of 240 subjects on a low-fat diet with mild to moderate hypercholesterolemia were randomly assigned to receive a daily capsule containing theaflavin-enriched green tea extract (375 mg) or placebo. After 12 weeks, the total cholesterol and LDL in the tea extract group had significantly lowered and HDL had significantly increased. There were no changes in the placebo group. "CONCLUSION: The theaflavin-enriched green tea extract we studied is an effective adjunct to a low-saturated-fat diet to reduce LDL-C in hypercholesterolemic adults and is well tolerated." Maron et al (2003). 'Cholesterol-lowering effect of a theaflavin-enriched green tea extract: a randomized controlled trial.' Arch. Int. Med. 163/12, 1448-53. PMID: 12824094.#
horse chestnut seed extract4chronic venous insufficiencycardioplant / herbOTW0.2416300Horse chestnut seed extract is effective in treating CVI. However, further research is needed."OBJECTIVES: To review the efficacy and safety of oral horse chestnut seed extract (HCSE) versus placebo, or reference therapy, for the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). SEARCH STRATEGY: We searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of HCSE for chronic venous insufficiency. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: The evidence presented implies that HCSE is an efficacious and safe short-term treatment for CVI. However, several caveats exist and more rigorous RCTs are required to confirm the efficacy of this treatment option." Pittler and Ernst (2006). PMID: 16437450."A number of clinical trials have shown that horse- chestnut seed extract may be beneficial to patients with mild to moderate chronic venous insufficiency. However, inadequate randomization, short duration and use of different end-points in these trials makes it difficult to conclude regarding effectiveness and safety, especially in long-term use. Horse- chestnut seed extract appears to be a short-term treatment option in patients with mild to moderate chronic venous insufficiency, but more rigorous trials are required to confirm the efficacy of this treatment."
hyaluronic acid3arthritis (only when injected)musculoskeletalcompound570700Injected hyaluronic acid might have a small effect in the treatment of osteoarthritis. However, the trials are biased and the results questionable. a review of 22 trials, it was found that "Intra-articular hyaluronic acid has a small effect when compared with an intra-articular placebo. The presence of publication bias suggests even this effect may be overestimated. Compared with lower-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid, the highest-molecular-weight hyaluronic acid may be more efficacious in treating knee OA, but heterogeneity of these studies limits definitive conclusions." Lo et al (2003). PMID: 14679274.COCHRANE LINK FOR HYALURONIC ACID INJECTIONS:
iron4child development (when not anaemic)children, mental health, general healthmineral2562970000Iron supplementation in infants might benefit their psychomotor development, but not their mental or behavioural development."Our objective was to evaluate the effects of iron supplementation in nonanemic pregnant women and in nonanemic healthy children aged <3 y on the mental performance and psychomotor development of children. [...] Limited available evidence suggests that iron supplementation in infants may positively influence children's psychomotor development, whereas it does not seem to alter their mental development or behavior." Szajewska et al (2010). 'Effects of iron supplementation in nonanemic pregnant women, infants, and young children on the mental performance and psychomotor development of children: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials.' Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 91/6, 1684-90. PMID: 20410098. #
iron + folic acid4maternal and infant healthreproductivecompound9.2967500Iron and folate supplementation reduces iron deficiency anaemia for pregnant women. The impact on babies is less clear.
kava2anxietymental healthplant / herb1.2419900Kava might have a small but significant effect on anxiety, but more information is required about the safety of long-term use.
krill oil1PMSwomenother16114500Krill oil significantly reduced both emotional and physical PMS symptoms in one study. a study of 70 subjects with PMS, it was found that "Neptune Krill Oil can significantly reduce dysmenorrhea and the emotional symptoms of premenstrual syndrome and is shown to be significantly more effective for the complete management of premenstrual symptoms compared to omega-3 fish oil." Sampalis et al (2003). "Evaluation of the effects of Neptune Krill Oil on the management of premenstrual syndrome and dysmenorrhea". Alternative Medicine Review 8/2, 171–79. PMID 12777162.
krill oil1arthritismusculoskeletalother16114500One study showed 300mg a day reduced inflammation and soothed arthritis symptoms after 7 days. 2007
L-arginine1exercise performancegeneral healthcompound4.4216000One study found that L-arginine had a significant beneficial impact on exercise performance. However, the trial was tiny. of Applied Psysiology"In a double-blind, crossover study, nine healthy males (aged 19-38 years) consumed a 500 mL beverage containing 6 g of L-arginine (ARG) or a placebo beverage (PLA), and completed a series of 'step' moderate-intensity and severe-intensity exercise bouts 1 h post-ingestion. In conclusion, similar to the effects of increased dietary nitrate intake, elevating NO bioavailability through dietary L-arginine supplementation reduced the O2 cost of moderate-intensity exercise and blunted the VO2 slow component and extended the time-to-exhaustion during severe-intensity exercise." Bailey et al (2010). 'Acute L-arginine supplementation reduces the O2 cost of moderate-intensity exercise and enhances high-intensity exercise tolerance.' Journal of Applied Physiology.
"Twelve trained college-aged men performed 2 trials of exercise separated by at least 1 week. At 4 hours before, and 30 minutes before exercise, a serving of an arginine α-ketoglutarate supplementation (AAKG) supplement or placebo was administered. Resting BP was assessed pre-exercise after 16 minutes of seated rest, and 5 and 10 minutes postexercise. Three sets each of chin-ups, reverse chin-ups, and push-ups were performed to exhaustion with 3 minutes of rest between each set. Data were analyzed using repeated-measures analysis of variance and paired t-tests. The AAKG supplementation did not improve muscle endurance or significantly affect the BP response to anaerobic work. Subjects performed fewer total chin-ups and total trial repetitions in the supplement trial. Subjects executed fewer reverse chin-ups during set 2 after receiving the supplement as compared to the placebo. Because AAKG supplementation may hinder muscular endurance, the use of these supplements before resistance training should be questioned." Greer and Jones (2011). PMID: 21399536."OBJECTIVE: We evaluated the pharmacokinetics, safety, and efficacy of l-arginine alpha-ketoglutarate (AAKG) in trained adult men. METHODS: Subjects participated in two studies that employed a randomized, double-blind, controlled design. In study 1, 10 healthy men (30-50 y old) fasted for 8 h and then ingested 4 g of time-released or non-timed-released AAKG. In study 2, which was placebo controlled, 35 resistance-trained adult men (30-50 y old) were randomly assigned to ingest 4 g of AAKG (three times a day, i.e., 12 g daily, n = 20) or placebo (n = 15). CONCLUSION: AAKG supplementation appeared to be safe and well tolerated, and positively influenced 1RM bench press and Wingate peak power performance. AAKG did not influence body composition or aerobic capacity."
L-carnitine3diabetesdiabetescompound5.362100L-cartinine may alleviate pain in patients with diabetic nerve issues (neuropathy). Care a study of 15 type 2 diabetic patients and 20 healthy controls, "L-carnitine constant infusion improves insulin sensitivity in insulin resistant diabetic patients; a significant effect on whole body insulin-mediated glucose uptake is also observed in normal subjects. In diabetics, glucose, taken up by the tissues, appears to be promptly utilized as fuel since glucose oxidation is increased during L-carnitine administration." Mingrone et al (1999). "L-Carnitine Improves Glucose Disposal in Type 2 Diabetic Patients". Journal of the American College of Nutrition 18 (1): 77–82. PMID 10067662.In a study of 86 patients, "L-carnitine therapy was effective in increasing semen quality, especially in groups with lower baseline levels. However, these results need to be confirmed by larger clinical trials and in vitro studies." Lenzi et al (2003). 'Use of carnitine therapy in selected cases of male factor infertility: a double-blind crossover trial.'. Fertility and Sterility, 79/2, 292-300. PMID 12569937.#
L-carnitine1impotencesexcompound5.362100"One study showed a potential improvement in sexual function in older males. More studies needed." Urology
L-lysine1herpessex, infectionscompoundOTW2.4524000There is no evidence that lysine has a preventative effect on cold sores."In a prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study of forty-one patients we found that oral ingestion of 1,248 mg a day of L-Lysine monohydrochloride shows evidence of decreasing the recurrence rate of herpes simplex attacks in nonimmunocompromised hosts. A dose of 624 mg a day was not effective. L-Lysine may also be capable of decreasing the severity of symptoms associated with recurrences. Neither dosage showed any evidence of shortening the healing time compared to placebo." McCune et al (1984).'Treatment of recurrent herpes simplex infections with L-lysine monohydrochloride.' Cutis. 34/4, 366-73. PMID: 6435961."A double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter trial of oral L-lysine monohydrochloride for the prevention and treatment of recurrent herpes simplex (HSV) infection was conducted. The treatment group was given L-Lysine monohydrochloride tablets (1,000 mg L-lysine per dose) 3 times a day for 6 months. [...] L-Lysine appears to be an effective agent for reduction of occurrence, severity and healing time for recurrent HSV infection." Griffith et al (1987). PMID: 3115841."Lysine appears to suppress the clinical manifestations of herpesvirus infection. 45 patients with frequently recurring herpes infection were given 312-1,200 mg of lysine daily in single or multiple doses. The clinical results demonstrated a beneficial effect from supplementary lysine in accelerating recovery from herpes simplex infection and suppressing recurrence."
lavender4depressionmental healthplant / herb69.656000Lavender is effective in treating mild to moderate depression, especially when combined with the antidepressant imipramine. NaturopathicaA 4-week double-blind, randomized trial with 45 adult outpatients shows the combination of imipramine and lavandula tincture was more effective than imipramine alone in the management of mild to moderate depression. "The main overall finding from this study is that lavandula tincture may be of therapeutic benefit in the management of mild to moderate depression as adjuvant therapy. A large-scale trial is justified." Akhondzadeh et al (2003). PMID: 12551734.#
lavender1sleep, relaxationmental healthplant / herb69.656000One small study found inhaling lavender before bed relieves sleepiness on waking in healthy adults, but the trial was tiny. and Motor Skillsno studies#
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