Does Quinoa Have Health Benefits? Here’s What Science Says

Introduction Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is a grain-like food that originated in the Andes Mountain countries of South America, where indigenous groups have used it for more than 7,000 years.  Quinoa has enjoyed a surge in popularity over the past few decades, when its exceptional nutritional profile became more widely recognized around the world. There is… Continue reading

Do Chaga Mushrooms Have Health Benefits? Current Studies Reviewed

Introduction The Chaga mushroom is called the “king of mushrooms,” while the better-known reishi mushroom gets the title of “queen of mushrooms.” Chaga mushrooms are marketed as having a wide range of medicinal benefits, including anti-inflammatory, cancer-treating and -preventive, hepatoprotective, and immuno-modulation effects. Given the fact that Chaga mushroom extract sells for as much as $130/oz, this mushroom… Continue reading

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 anticancer, immuno-modulating, hypolipidemic, antioxidant, antimicrobial, antihypertensive, antidiabetic, and wound healing properties. However, its real claim to fame is as a neuroprotective agent. I have plenty of patients (and friends) who are not just… 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… 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 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. It is used as an antidepressant, anticonvulsive, antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, antibacterial, uterine tonic nervine, and for a sore throat, muscular pain, low estrogen, PMS, menstrual cramps,… Continue reading

Does Ginseng Have Any Health Benefits? Science Answers

Ginseng is a 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 important medicinal part of the plant… Continue reading

Does Kombu Seaweed Have Health Benefits? Current Research Examined

There is great interest in the health benefits of kombu which is an edible form of Japanese brown seaweed kelp (Laminaria japonica). The long list of proported health benefits of kombu includes improved digestion, cancer prevention, improved thyroid function, higher iron stores and hemoglobin levels. And the list goes on. This all sounds very good… Continue reading

Does Emu Oil Have Health Benefits? The Research Reviewed

The flightless emu bird (Dromaius novaehallandiae), native to Australia, is probably best known for being on Australia’s coat-of-arms, opposite the kangaroo. Emu oil is a well-known, commercially available product, notably in countries such as Australia and the United States, and believed to have many therapeutic and medicinal properties. Being from Australia myself, I often come… Continue reading

Does Sarsaparilla Have Health Benefits? The Research Reviewed

Why the interest in Sarsaparilla? Remember Sarsaparilla, the fizzy soft drink in a bottle? It may be what first comes to mind when I mention the word. Although now sometimes made with artificial ingredients, the beverage was originally made with the sarsaparilla (SAR) plant. Nowadays, SAR is becoming more widely available in health food stores,… Continue reading

Phosphoric Acid: Are You Eating Too Much? The Research Reviewed

Too many people in the natural health world treat phosphoric acid as ‘public enemy number one’. This is simply misinformation that comes largely from tabloid style blogs which sensationalize and manipulate science. So what is the real backstory to phosphoric acid and health? What does the scientific literature have to tell us about the effect… Continue reading

Does Eating Garlic Reduce The Risk of Lung And Bowel Cancer By 40%?

Claim Eating Garlic Reduces Risk of Lung, Bowel Cancer By 40%. Verdict It is not possible to make any overall conclusions about the anticancer properties of garlic due to the limitations of the existing studies. Origin Natural News carried an article entitled ‘Eating Garlic Daily Reduces Risk of Lung, Bowel Cancer by 40%’. The author… Continue reading

Do Strawberries Really Cut Heart Attack Risk In Women By One Third?

Claim Flavanoids from strawberries and blueberries cut heart attack risk in women by one third. Verdict The scientific literature simply does not support the claim that anthocyanin containing berries such as strawberries and blueberries reduce the risk of heart attacks in women. Origin Medical News Today reviewed the health benefits and nutritional breakdown of strawberries… Continue reading