ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
Know Your Asthma Triggers
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Uncover Why Turmeric Helps You Heal
When Healing Becomes a Commodity
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
BONES & JOINTS
Weight Loss Might Not Curb Knee Arthritis
Chronic Low Back Pain Is on the Rise
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
CANCER
U.S. Reported 25,000 Cases of HPV-Related Cancers Annually
Drinking Green Tea May Slow Prostate Cancer
Well Water Might Raise Bladder Cancer Risk
CAREGIVING
TV Watching Doesn't Fast-Track Baby's Skills
Many Alzheimer's Caregivers Admit to Abusive Behavior
Newborn Screenings Now Required Across U.S.
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Exercise May Blunt Salt's Effect on Hypertension
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
COSMETIC
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Health Tip: After Liposuction
DENTAL, ORAL
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
Acid Drinks Blamed for Increase in Tooth Erosion
Gummy Bears Join Cavity Fight
DIABETES
Formula Puts Doctor, Patient Glucose Readings on Same Page
Study Shows Turmeric May Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Strict Blood Sugar Lowering Won't Ease Diabetes Heart Risk
DIET, NUTRITION
Pesticides and How to Affordably Eat Organic or Reduce Pesticide Consumption
Most Fast-Food French Fries Cooked in Unhealthiest Oil
Fruits, Vegetables, Teas May Cut Smokers' Cancer Risk
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Gas Cooking Might Up Your Cancer Risk
Main Ingredients in Household Dust Come From Outdoors
Sunken, Unexploded Bombs Pose Cancer Risk
EYE CARE, VISION
Gene-Transfer Proves Safe for Vision Problem
When Gauging Age, the Eyes Have It
Clues Found to Brain Mechanism Behind Migraines
FITNESS
Antioxidants Blunt Exercise Benefit, Study Shows
Marathoners Go the Distance on Heart Health
Super Bowl Loss Can 'Kill' Some Fans
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
'Organic' May Not Mean Healthier
Quit Smoking the Holistic Way
Reminiscing Helps Build Emotional Strength
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Relaxation Tapes or Mozart Lower Blood Pressure
Fish Oil Supplements Help With Heart Failure
Boosting Vitamin D Can Do a Heart Good
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
St. John's Wort Doesn't Work for ADHD
Standard IQ Test May Underestimate People With Autism
Teens Lose More Weight Using Healthy Strategies
MEN'S HEALTH
Countdown to Hair Loss
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
A Simple 'Thank You' Brings Rewards to All
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
Breast-Feeding May Protect a Woman's Heart
Music of Mozart Soothes the Preemie Baby
SENIORS
Tai Chi May Help Ward Off Knee Pain in Seniors
Healthy Diet Could Cut Alzheimer's Disease Risk
15-Point Test Gauges Alzheimer's Risk
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Exercise Boosts Bone Density in Breast-Feeding Moms
Calcium Helps Ward Off Colon Cancer
Women Who Run May Benefit From Extra Folic Acid
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Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes

MONDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Japanese herbal medicines may help people with gastrointestinal disorders -- such as constipation and indigestion -- that don't respond to conventional treatments, a new study suggests.

Many drugs used for these gastrointestinal "motility disorders" don't work or cause unwanted side effects, the researchers noted.

"Japanese herbal medicines have been used in East Asia for thousands of years. Our review of the world medical literature reveals that herbal medicines serve a valuable role in the management of patients with functional gastrointestinal disorders," lead researcher Hidekazu Suzuki, an associate professor at the Keio University School of Medicine, said in a news release.

The researchers analyzed data from studies that examined several different Japanese herbal medicines, including Rikkunshi-to and Dai-Kenchu-to. The results showed that Rikkunshi-to, which is prepared from eight herbs, helped reduce discomfort caused by functional dyspepsia (indigestion). Dai-Kenchu-to, a mixture of ginseng, ginger, and zanthoxylum fruit, was found to help constipation in children and patients with postoperative ileus, a disruption of normal bowel movements after surgery.

Another herbal medicine called hangeshashin-to reduced the severity and frequency of diarrhea caused by anti-cancer drugs.

The study appears in the current issue of Neurogastroenterology and Motility.

Herbal medicines made in Japan must meet standardized rules for quality and quantity of ingredients. The health benefits of this standardized approach need careful examination, particularly in the Western world, according to the researchers.

"There is a mandate to provide accurate data regarding the effectiveness of non-traditional therapy, not only to our patients but also to health-care providers who face the dilemma of recommending or opposing management strategies that incorporate herbal medicine," Suzuki said.

More information

The International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders has more about GI motility disorders.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: Wiley-Blackwell, news release, March 24, 2009

Last Updated: March 30, 2009

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