Does Lion’s Mane Mushroom Have Health Benefits? Here’s The Research

Introduction Lion’s Mane is a culinary and medicinal mushroom that is growing in popularity as a functional food. It is claimed to have anti-cancer, immuno-modulating, hypolipidemic, antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-hypertensive, anti-diabetic and wound healing properties. However it’s real claim to fame is as a neuroprotective agent. I have plenty of patients (and friends) who are not… Continue reading

Does L-Cysteine Have Health Benefits? The Studies Reviewed

Introduction Cysteine is a sulfur-containing amino acid that is made by our bodies and used as a building block for proteins. Although classified as a non-essential amino acid, in rare cases, cysteine may be essential for infants, the elderly, and individuals with certain metabolic disease or who suffer from malabsorption diseases. Us humans can (and… Continue reading

Is Oxygen Therapy Effective For Anything? The Research Reviewed

Introduction The ‘oxygen bar’ phenomenon is touted as the health conscious alternative to shisha/hooka (or any other illegal substances that one might choose to inhale for fun).  An ‘oxygen bar’ is a free-standing booth that you can rent and people sit/stand to inhale over 90% pure oxygen and aromatherapy via disposable nasal cannula. Regular room… Continue reading

Does Barberry Or Its Extract Have Health Benefits? Science Responds

Introduction We are all familiar with yummy blueberries, blackberries, and boysenberries…but have you heard of barberries?? Well, neither had I. Until now. It seems the barberry plant, including its tart red fruit, has traditionally been used in folk medicine for thousands of years, particularly in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries. There are a number… Continue reading

Forbidden Rice (aka Black Rice): Does It Really Have Health Benefits?

Introduction Forbidden rice (aka black rice, the Emperor’s rice, Oryza sativa L. indica) has been consumed for centuries in Asia and is now gaining popularity as a functional superfood globally. Black rice is a special cultivar of rice which contains a high content of phytochemicals (including anthocyanins) in the aleurone layer. It is purported to… Continue reading

Does Skullcap Have Health Benefits? A Scientist Explains

Introduction Scutellaria baicalensis, also known as Chinese skullcap or Huang Qin, is a root extract that has been used in both Traditional Chinese and Traditional Japanese medicine for centuries.   Skullcap is also widely used as a backbone in herbal formulas in the western world where it is often referred to as ‘scute’. Skullcap is… Continue reading

Should You Eat Your Placenta (Pills) After Childbirth? A Scientist Explains

Introduction There is a growing interest in human placentophagy (also spelt placentophagia) which is the scientific term for either eating your own placenta or eating placenta pills after childbirth (1). Placentophagy is a common practice among non-mammals and has been described as being ‘conspicuously absent’ among humans worldwide. Absent until now, that is. It was… Continue reading

Does Lavender Oil Do Anything? We review the research

Introduction There are over 250,000 lavender related products for sale on Amazon. That sure is a whole lot of lavender. These range from essential oils, teas, car fresheners, lavender chocolates, perfumes and cosmetics to religious crosses. Lavender is believed to offer a wide range of health and wellness benefits. Purported uses include anxiety relief, cancer… Continue reading

Does L-Methionine Have Health Benefits? A Scientist Explains

L-Methionine (L-Met), a.k.a Methionine is an amino acid needed to form protein in the body. It also has, as I have discovered, many other valuable claims attributed to it. What are some of those claims? These are some of those that I’ve come across, and will be tackling: assists with drug withdrawal symptoms, lessons tremors… Continue reading

Does Clary Sage Oil Have Health Benefits? A Scientist Explains

Clary sage (Salvia sclarea L. Lamiaceae) is an aromatic plant which is  cultivated in Europe and North America (1). The list of anecdotal benefits of clary sage is extremely long and includes being used as an antidepressant, anti-convulsive, anti-septic, anti-spasmodic, astringent, antibacterial, uterine tonic nervine and for sore throat, muscular pain, low estrogen, PMS, menstrual… Continue reading

Does Ginseng Have Any Health Benefits? Science Answers

Ginseng is an herbaceous plant that belongs to genus Panax, of the family Araliaceae; panax means ‘all-healing’ or ‘panacea’ (1). The name ginseng comes from the Chinese words “Jen Sheng,” meaning “man-herb,” due to the humanoid shape of the rhizome (root) of the plant (2). The root is the most is the important medicinal part… Continue reading

Does Glucosamine Have Health Benefits? A Scientific Review of the Evidence

Introduction to Glucosamine Glucosamine is a supplement that most of us have heard of. A recent report from the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics found that Americans spend around $13 billion per year on natural product supplements (1). Of these, glucosamine is one of the most popular dietary supplements. So why the huge interest in… Continue reading

Does Spikenard Have Health Benefits? We Ask A Scientist

What Is Spikenard? Spikenard, also known as card, nardin and muskroot, is an essential oil derived from the rhizome (root) of Nardostachys jatamansi (N. jatamansi). N. jatamansi is a plant of the Valerian family and grows from the northern alpine to the sub alpine area of the Himalayan region, at high altitudes of 3,000 to… Continue reading

Does Pine Bark Extract Have Health Benefits? A Look At The Research

Pine bark extract must be the secret ingredient in the mythical elixir of life considering the fact that it is touted as an anti-infective, anti-cancer, anti-ageing, anti-hypertensive, anticoagulant, anti-diabetes, anti-erectile dysfunction, anti-allergy, anti-PMT, anti-endometriosis, anti-diabetic foot ulcer, pro-circulation, pro-analgesic, pro-stamina, and AHDH remedy (to name just a few). It supposedly brings us all the benefits… Continue reading

Hyperlipidemia: The Best Treatments According To Research

What is Hyperlipidemia? Hyperlipidemia is a key preventable risk factor for the number one cause of death and disability in the developed world – heart disease. Hyperlipidemia refers to high levels of lipids in the blood. Hyperlipidemia (also called dyslipidemia) can be asymptomatic (until you get really sick or it kills you) but can be diagnosed… Continue reading

Does Butyric Acid Have Health Benefits? The Research Reviewed

It can smell sickly (as in, um, vomit), or sweet, even added to perfumes. It can be found in certain foods, produced by our bodies or taken as a supplement. A quick Google search reveals the main claims of benefit for Butyric Acid (BTA), also known as Butanoic Acid, relate to gut health and improving… Continue reading