ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Taking the Mystery Out of Hypnotherapy
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
BONES & JOINTS
Bone Loss Stable on Restricted Calorie Diet
Get in Step With Summer Foot Care
Returning to the Road Tricky After Injury
CANCER
Sharing Cancer Info May Be Empowering
Acupuncture May Help Relieve Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Occaisonal Dieting May Cut Breast Cancer, Study Says
CAREGIVING
When the Caregiver Becomes the Patient
Birthmark or Blood Vessel Problem?
Hospital Volume Imperfect Gauge of Cancer Surgery Outcomes
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Salt Boosts Blood Pressure in High-Risk Patients
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
Exercise Extends Life of Kidney Patients
COSMETIC
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
DENTAL, ORAL
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
DIABETES
Study Shows Turmeric May Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
24 Million Americans Had Diabetes in 2007
DIET, NUTRITION
Coffee Drinking Lowers Women's Stroke Risk
Keep Stress Off the Holiday Meal Menu, Expert Advises
The Food Irradiation Story
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Household Insecticides May Be Linked to Autoimmune Diseases
Cleaning House May Be Risky for Women With Asthma
EYE CARE, VISION
Autistic Children Make Limited Eye Contact
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Glaucoma Associated With Reading Impairments in Elderly
FITNESS
Women Who Run May Benefit From Extra Folic Acid
Fall Cleanup Is a Prime Time for Accidents
Antioxidants Blunt Exercise Benefit, Study Shows
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Go To Work But Skip The Car
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Hand Washing 10 Times a Day May Help Keep Flu Away
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Soy Protein Doesn't Lower Cholesterol
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
Small Cuts in Salt Intake Spur Big Drops in Heart Trouble
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Scary Toxins Make Halloween Face Paints Questionable
When It Comes to Toys, Shop Smart, Shop Safe
MEN'S HEALTH
Exercise May Prevent Prostate Cancer: Study Shows
Vigorous Exercise Cuts Stroke Risk for Men, Not Women
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
17 Ways to Create the Perfect Workday
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Breast-Feeding May Protect a Woman's Heart
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
SENIORS
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
Keeping Mentally Active Seems To Keep The Brain Active
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Steady Weight Gain Boosts Late-Life Breast Cancer Risk
Simple Carbs Pose Heart Risk for Women
For Women, Moderate Midlife Drinking Linked to Healthier Old Age
Add your Article

Soluble Fiber, But Not Bran, Soothes Irritable Bowel

(HealthDay News) -- People with the chronic condition known as irritable bowel syndrome may find relief by consuming soluble fiber (psyllium).

But they'll get no relief -- and perhaps more bowel upset -- from bran, a new Dutch study found.

IBS, which involves chronic abdominal discomfort and irregular bowel habits, affects about one in 10 Americans. Some experts have advised increased intake of dietary fiber, but data on the effectiveness of this approach has been limited.

In the study, published online Aug. 28 in BMJ, a team at the University Medical Center Utrecht had 275 adult patients with IBS consume either 10 grams of psyllium (soluble fiber), bran (insoluble fiber) or a placebo twice daily for three months. They then checked patient symptoms at one, two and three months, including abdominal pain and quality of life.

The researchers found psyllium to be most effective in treating IBS. After three months of follow-up, people taking psyllium had a 90-point drop in symptom severity, on average. This compared to a 58-point drop among those taking bran and 49-point drop for those taking the placebo. While symptom severity was eased, the researchers found no difference between the groups in terms of abdominal pain or quality of life.

Bran showed "no clinically relevant benefit," the researchers said in a news release. In fact, many patients couldn't tolerate the bran and this group experienced the highest dropout rate.

The findings suggest that psyllium, but not bran, may be a useful first treatment approach to help manage IBS, the researchers said, while bran may not help -- or may even exacerbate -- the condition.

SOURCES: BMJ, news release, Aug. 28, 2009