By: Joe Graedon October 18, 2005 0 Comments
    Cat’s Claw

    Cat's claw, or uña de gato as it is also called, has piqued many people's interest lately, first because it comes from remote and exotic rain forests, and second, because it is believed to act on the…

    By: Joe Graedon October 18, 2005 2 Comments
    Cascara Sagrada

    Cascara sagrada, Spanish for "sacred bark," comes from the American buckthorn tree native to the western coast of North America, from California to British Columbia, and as far inland as Montana. The …

    By: Joe Graedon October 18, 2005 33 Comments
    Boswellia

    Frankincense, like myrrh, is featured in the Bible story about the three wise men visiting the infant Jesus. Like myrrh, frankincense is a resin from a tree in the family Burseraceae. (Guggul is anoth…

    By: Joe Graedon October 17, 2005 0 Comments
    Concord Grape Juice Keeps Cough at Bay

    Q. My wife used to get sore throats every winter. They'd hang on for weeks and develop into a loud, hacking cough. Until she recovered, neither of us would get much sleep. Then I remembered that my si…

    By: Joe Graedon October 17, 2005 0 Comments
    Infectious Ulcers Win Nobel Prize

    For decades medical students were taught a simple rule: "no acid, no ulcer." It was an article of faith that stress and an executive life style contributed to acid-induced stomach ulcers. Millions of …

    By: Joe Graedon October 17, 2005 2 Comments
    Avoiding Migraines with Wheat-Free Diet

    Q. I suffered from migraine headaches for more than 10 years. I saw several neurologists, but my intense headaches forced me to take early retirement. In the fall of 2002, I went from 3 headaches a we…

    By: Joe Graedon October 15, 2005 0 Comments
    #562 Open Lines

    Alcohol has been shown to increase the risk of breast cancer. Is there any way to mitigate this risk? New research suggests that diet can make a difference. Experts are concerned about the possibility…

    By: Joe Graedon October 10, 2005 0 Comments
    Wrong Dose Of Remeron Could Be Trouble

    Q. I take 15 mg of Remeron for depression. Recently I called in a refill. When I opened the bottle, I noticed that the pills were much larger and a different color. To check on this, I took the new pi…

    By: Joe Graedon October 10, 2005 0 Comments
    Attention Deficit Disorder Creates Dilemma

    When a child is diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, a parent is put in a terrible bind. On the one hand, teachers may push for medications like Ritalin or Strattera. That's becaus…

    By: Joe Graedon October 10, 2005 0 Comments
    Treating Narcolepsy Is Tricky

    Q. Are there any natural treatments for narcolepsy and cataplexy? A. Narcolepsy is a condition in which people fall asleep suddenly during waking hours. If they lose muscle control, it is called catap…

    By: Joe Graedon October 8, 2005 0 Comments
    #561 Solving Sexual Problems

    It seems as if you can't turn on television these days without seeing an ad for erectile dysfunction drugs. Levitra, Cialis and Viagra have been highly promoted. How good are these medications and are…

    By: Joe Graedon October 3, 2005 0 Comments
    Seniors Sneak Gin For Arthritis Relief

    Q. Some elderly friends recently told a group of us that they were surreptitiously going to the liquor store and purchasing gin so they could soak golden raisins in it and eat a few daily. This was ac…

    By: Joe Graedon October 3, 2005 0 Comments
    Medicine Could Fend Off Bird Flu

    Q. I'm seeking advice regarding "bird" flu. I'd like to try to take precautions now if I can. Is it too late to get Tamiflu? What about masks? My husband would cringe if he knew I was asking this, but…

    By: Joe Graedon October 3, 2005 0 Comments
    Treatment For Mental Illness Falls Short

    The mentally ill have been tortured throughout history. Many past cultures interpreted the delusions of schizophrenics as signs of demonic possession. In some cases holes were drilled in their skulls …

    By: Joe Graedon October 1, 2005 0 Comments
    #560 Open Lines

    Treatments for mental illness have ranged from flogging to frontal lobotomies. In the 1950s researchers developed drugs like Thorazine to treat schizophrenia. But serious side effects limited their us…

    By: Joe Graedon September 26, 2005 0 Comments
    Snuff May Be Bad For Blood Pressure

    Q. We hear so much about the dangers of cigarette smoking but you never hear about snuff. My husband and his mother live on the stuff and I cannot stand it. Does the nicotine in snuff have an effect o…

    By: Joe Graedon September 26, 2005 0 Comments
    Baby Wipes Do Double Duty For Hemorrhoids

    Q. From my first pregnancy until about ten years ago, I had two or three very painful attacks of hemorrhoids a year. I would have to go to bed for up to a week at a time. I haven't had a single attack…

    By: Joe Graedon September 26, 2005 0 Comments
    New Medicare Drug Benefit Creates Confusion

    After years of wrangling, Congress finally passed a prescription drug benefit for senior citizens. The Medicare program will launch in January of 2006, but over the next several weeks, people who are …

    By: Joe Graedon September 24, 2005 0 Comments
    #557 Counterfeit Drugs

    Americans are told that that they have the safest drugs in the world. Many people assume that the FDA is protecting them from sub-standard and counterfeit medications. In reality, though, the FDA is v…

    By: Joe Graedon September 19, 2005 0 Comments
    Garlic Flea Remedy Dangerous For Dog

    Q. I heard that garlic could keep fleas from biting, so I put some in my dog's food for about a week. He became lethargic and couldn't even climb the lowest stairs. I thought this might be a reaction …

    By: Joe Graedon September 19, 2005 0 Comments
    Sleep Deprivation Makes Driving Dangerous

    Are you a hazard on the highways? Do you drive impaired? Most people would answer no, but they might be deluding themselves. Far too many people drink and drive. Even a few glasses of wine can slow re…

    By: Joe Graedon September 19, 2005 0 Comments
    Insomniacs Will Soon Have a New Pill for Sleep

    Q. I have fibromyalgia and it disturbs my sleep. I take Lunesta for sleep every night (in addition to practicing healthy sleep habits). What is your opinion of the new medication Rozerem? A. Lunesta (…

    By: Joe Graedon September 17, 2005 0 Comments
    #559 Open Lines

    Although pomegranates are mentioned in Greek myths and the Bible, researchers are rediscovering the healing power of this ancient fruit. New research suggests that something in pomegranates may improv…

    By: Joe Graedon September 12, 2005 0 Comments
    Insomniacs Will Soon Have A New Pill For Sleep

    Q. I have fibromyalgia and it disturbs my sleep. I take Lunesta for sleep every night (in addition to practicing healthy sleep habits). What is your opinion of the new medication Rozerem? A. Lunesta (…

    By: Joe Graedon September 12, 2005 0 Comments
    Cutting Carbs Controls Indigestion

    Q. Years ago, I was overweight and had high blood pressure. So my doctor put me on a diet. When I reached a plateau, the doctor told me to cut out bread. It worked. I lost the desired amount and my bl…

    By: Joe Graedon September 12, 2005 0 Comments
    FDA Delay of Plan B Triggers Complaints

    The FDA is in hot water. Not long ago the agency was under scrutiny for its handling of the Vioxx problem. Critics charged that the Food and Drug Administration was more concerned about the health of …

    By: Joe Graedon September 5, 2005 0 Comments
    Will Eggplant Lower Blood Pressure?

    Q. Have you ever heard of this remedy for high blood pressure? Wash but don't peel a medium eggplant. Dice it into 1-inch cubes. Place the cubes in a glass gallon jug and cover the eggplant with disti…

    By: Joe Graedon September 5, 2005 1 Comments
    ADD Drug Linked To Weight Loss

    Q. My 10-year-old granddaughter has ADHD. She has been prescribed Concerta and Ritalin and takes both pills every morning. At a birthday party for her cousin recently, my wife and I noticed that our g…

    By: Joe Graedon September 5, 2005 0 Comments
    Arthritis Sufferers Caught In Dilemma

    Pity anyone with pain that lasts more than 10 days. That's how long the FDA says you can safely take an over-the-counter analgesic such as Advil, Aleve or Tylenol on your own. The trouble is that one …

    By: Joe Graedon September 4, 2005 14 Comments
    Black Cohosh

    This plant, native to North American forests, has a number of popular names: bugbane, black snakeroot, rattleroot, and squaw root. It sends up graceful tall spires of white flowers; the black in its c…