Yale Says Chinese Herbs Help Chemotherapy Effectiveness

Chinese herbs in the Wall Street Journal?  Undoubtably not the place you would expect such a story.  


Since the research was done at Yale University, why not?  Turns out a combination of four herbs used for about 1800 years in Chinese Medicine has been studied through Yale University and is reported to “enhance the effectiveness of chemotherapy in patients with colon cancer”.


The formula/combination of herbs is called Huang Qin Tang (Scutellaria Decoction). In early trials this four herbs  have been found effective at reducing the side-effects of chemotherapy, including diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.   (I think everyone knows a cancer patient that would love to get rid of those side-effects.)   The herbs are also being reported to “bolster colon-cancer treatment”.1


Will this study, help hurdle Traditional Chinese herbal medicine into mainstream American cancer therapy?  Time will tell.  Chinese herbs have been used for centuries safely and effectively and are the first medicine given before drugs throughout Asia.




The scientific team led by Yung-Chi Cheng, an oncology researcher at Yale University was funded in part by the National Cancer Institute, is planning to begin Phase II clinical trials. Many conventional medications are derived from individual chemical agents originally found in plants. In the case of Huang Qin Tang, however, scientists so far have identified 62 active chemicals in the four-herb combination that apparently need to “work together” to be effective.


Josephine Briggs, head of the National Center for Complementary

and Alternative Medicin (CAM) said about this herbal combination,

“It’s polypharmacy,” or the equivalent of several drugs being administered at once.

Dr. Cheng began his research on Huang Qin Tang about a dozen years ago when he sought a better way of dealing with the chemotherapy’s side effects.  Dr. Cheng, who grew up in Taiwan, and turned to Traditional Chinese Medicine, (TCM) which often uses herbal combinations for gastrointestinal problems. He decided to test whether it could help cancer patients without compromising the effectiveness of the chemotherapy.


The Chinese herb formula Huang Qin Tang contains:  Huang Qin 36%, Da Zao 16%, Bai Shao 24%, and Zhi Gan Cao 24%. Scientists have found over 62 chemicals when these four herbs are cooked in an aquaous solution, boiled in water.

The potential in Chinese herbal medicine is vast indeed.  

What will they find next?



Chinese herbs in places like Japan, Taiwan and China have been used for centuries and their reputation in the healthcare system is undeniably successful. Chinese herbal medicines health insurance coverage is part of the national health insurance in these Asian countries

Nestle Ventures into Chinese Medicine and Chinese Herbs

          Nestle is moving into Traditional Chinese Medicine TCM  by joining forces with Chinese pharma group Chi-Med.  Nestle also just announced they are acquiring Pfizer Nutrition for $11.85 billion dollars.

Nestle is growing in leaps and bounds.  Chinese herbs already have thousands of years of proven use and it makes sense that a giant like Nestle would see the value in looking to Chinese herbs for the newest drugs. The new company, called Nutrition Science Partners (NSP), is to be owned equally by the two parties, Nestle said, without revealing any of the financials behind the deal.  NSP will research, develop, make and sell nutritional and medicinal products derived from botanical plants, it said.

When I think of Nestle, I think of the chocolate chips cookies I use to make as a kid with Nestle chocolate chips.  Yup, same company.  In fact they own too many brands to mention and are the worlds largest food company.

The new herbal joint venture will hand Nestle's Health Science division access to Chi-Med's traditional Chinese medicine library, which includes more than 50,000 extracts from more than 1,200 different herbal plants is one of the world's largest, the statement said.

"Botanical are in the forefront in our view in the search for new medicines," the Chi-Med chief said.

Traditional Chinese plant-based medicines represented between 30% and 40% of all pharmaceutical sales in China, he added.

“This joint venture provides Nestlé Health Science with an opportunity to develop and commercialize truly innovative and scientifically validated botanical-based nutrition for personalized healthcare in gastro-intestinal health,” Nestle Health Science head Luis Cantarell said.

Nestle established the health science business early last year to develop personalized nutrition treatments for conditions such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease.

What do you think, good for the Chinese medicine world or not?

How To Stay Asleep… All Night!

-skinny Brochure iSleep-1Do you practice good sleep hygiene? 

You might be asking what is sleep hygiene?

Sleep hygiene is a combination of practices to create a restful, rejuvenating night of sleep. If you don’t get restful sleep every night there is an  herbal solution to help.  This  product has over 800 hundreds of years of use and clinical studies backing it’s effectiveness.

Why use an herbal remedy for sleep that has been used for 800 years?  Because, it works!

The history of herbal remedies is as old as man.  Written first on bones, turtle shells and then bamboo and pryus reeds this sleep remedy has been past down from generation to generation.

There is no guessing.

The herbs used gently calm the mind, stop the over-thinking and allow the body to fall asleep and stay asleep naturally.

We did improve on these herbs by re-packaging them in convenient easy to use individual packets.  

Our packets combine the best in pharmaceutical packaging without using fillers or additives.

Our packets are convenient, have no additives, no sugar, no pills and best of all, water is optional. 

Try iSleep Herb Pack today not just because it tastes great, but because you deserve a restful night of sleep…

every night.

Don’t be fooled by sleep aids today that combine herbs which have no history of ever being used together.  That is junk science.  It’s similar to the idea of throwing everything in your refrigerator into a pot of soup and hoping it will taste good. We know it doesn’t work that way.

Wouldn’t you rather use an herbal sleep aid that has hundreds of years of use!

Try iSleep Herb Pack today.

Why You Should Not Be Reaching For Sleeping Pills

We all know sleep is something we all need within every day. When you can't get to sleep, a natural sleep aid can make insomnia a thing of the past, yet  some 60 million Americans choose a prescription sleeping pill.  Whether the lack of sleep is due to stress, poor diet, lifestyle choices or a laundry list of other porr habits, sleeping pills have become a drug of choice. 


If you are a sleeping pill user do you know a new study shows prescription sleep aids bring an increased risk of dying early?  On the contrary, Chinese herbal sleep aids have been used safely and without side effects for centuries.  


The study published in the British Medical Journal says that people taking a prescription sleeping pill even when taking fewer than eighteen pills per year have nearly four times the mortality rate of those who don’t take the drugs.  Patients who take higher doses of sleeping pills have a 35% increased cancer risk. 


What was significant about this study is that it was long-term, keeping track of 10,529 people who had at least one prescription for a sleeping pill between 2002 and 2007, compared with a control group. While the study doesn’t demonstrate causation, it did adjust for confounding factors such as age, smoking, weight, and other health conditions.


 Try a natural sleep aid, Chinese herbs for sleep have been used for centuries and has no side effects. 

Fascinating Lecture On Chinese Herb Discoveries

A lecture I attended today was revisiting history, the history of Chinese herbs.  What I found most interesting is the fact that hospitals in the U.S. are doing clinical trials using Chinese herbs.

This is truly re-inventing Western medicine.

The drugs of the future are herbs that are proving (once again) their effectiveness. These herbal drugs are made from Traditional Chinese herb formulas written down over one thousand years ago, so we can say this medicine is truly based on historical information.

Chinese herbal medicine is being studied at places like Yale University where Yung Chi (Tommy) Cheng, PhD. is the chairman of the Consortium for Globalization of Chinese Medicine. He is an innovative pioneer in herbal drug research and internationally renowned for his significant role in the advancement of pharmacology.

Using a Traditional Chinese Herb four herb formula, Dr. Cheng is working on FDA approval for a patented drug to alleviate side effects of chemotherapy induced nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.  The unfortunate side effects of chemotherapy make it difficult for patients to tolerate and chemotherapy damages the immune system. This Chinese herb formula is proving it can eliminate the side effects by healing the gut and improving the immune system without reducing the effects of the chemo.
This is exciting work and we hope the FDA will give swift approval as so many patients are in need of this holistic, herbal medicine.

Chinese Herbs Now In Skin Moisturizers

Chinese botanicals are going mainstreamI saw this in the store the other day. It is one of the just a handful of main stream products I’ve seen in the U.S. that is advertising “Chinese Botanicals”!


Very Cool!! Kiss My Face is not just a trend setter they see the writing on the wall. Chinese herbs can and do make your products better. They are used all over Asia in various drinks, hand creams, shampoo’s and cosmetics, it’s about time we start seeing them on American store shelves.


American’s are getting exposed to Chinese herbs slowly but surely. Whether it’s ginseng in energy drinks or goji berries packages we are starting to see greater use of Chinese herbs in everyday products. Kiss Your Face uses both Chinese botanicals, and Chinese herbs on their packaging label.


Here are the three main reasons why Chinese herbs are different than Western herbs and why you're going to start seeing much more of these Chinese botanicals in everyday products.


1. Firstly, most of them have been used for thousands of years so evidence of use is simply much, much longer than Western botanicals that have only been documented for only a few hundred years.


2. Chinese botanicals don’t necessarily grow exclusively in China today. Many grow around the world, including America. All are part of a system of medicine called Traditional Chinese medicine that is thousands of years old and today this system of medicine keeps billions of people alive and well.


3. The third most important difference in Chinese herbs vs Western herbs is their use in combinations or formulas. Western herbs are often used one at a time. For example the use of chamomile for trouble sleeping. But in Chinese Herbal medicine, one herb alone would never be used to help with sleep. A combination of herbs, or formula of herbs would be used because over the centuries people have found formulas or groups of herbs work much better than just using one herb along.


Of course there are many other differences between Western herbs and Chinese herbs,  But that's a good start and it's great to see the system of herbal medicine being incorporated into more mainstream products in the United States and around the world.

Ginseng Now Included in Food Products

The China Ministry of Health just recently decided to change its policy regarding ginseng.  Well known for hundreds of health benefits, ginseng will now be allowed to be included in food products in Asia.   America has no such restrictions for ginseng and this longevity herb is often found in energy drinks today.


Since 2002, the Chinese MInistry of Health has regulated Chinese herbs and placed them into three categories. One  category for Chinese herbs used as food, another categorized herbs as health food and a third that included herbs only as medicine.


Before this announcement, ginseng was permitted to be used only in registered health products and medicine categories. The new policy allows ginseng to be used in all three categories.  This will most certainly increase demand and international competitiveness of ginseng.  Prices of this ancient herb have been steadily rising the past few years as more Americans and other Western countries learn about the health benefits of ginseng.


Ginseng is commonly called the “king of all herbs.” Ginseng is considered to be nutritious and to have great medical value in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It has been used as a tonic in TCM for over 3,000 years. Ginseng is grown in other East Asia countries as well as in the U.S. and Canada known as American ginseng, but the world’s largest production site is located on Changbai Moutain in Jilin Province, which accounts for 85 percent of China’s total production and 70 percent of the world’s output.


I recently toured a famous American Ginseng farm in Wisconsin.  I was a bit surprised to learn that once American ginseng is grown on the land that it cannot ever be replanted there again.  Other crops can be planted after the 6 years old ginseng is harvested.  However, because ginseng depletes the soil of so many mineral and other nutrients it is impossible to harvest ginseng on the same land twice.   Some farmers have waited 70 years and tried to grow another crop of American ginseng only to find after 3 years the crop stopped growing and was never old enough to harvest.   This is just one of the reasons the cost of  100 grams of conenctrated ginseng granules is increasing world wide.  Ginseng is the largest dollar crop exported out of the state of Wisconsin.   Who knew?

Drinking This Is Not The Best Way To Get Energy

Generally speaking caffeine is the most popular drug in the United States. Depending on where you are in the world, the Chinese herb ginseng, or the herb sugar cane or green tea may be the drug of choice. Even though these stimulants all have botanical origins, they can work just as well as a modern pharmaceutical drug.   However, our cells produce mitochondria energy as a result of many, many chemical interactions. Caffeine stimulate our adrenals but does not source real mitochondria energy


Why then, are the energy drinks that contain caffeine considered a food, and not a drug?


This is the questions the City of New York is about to answer? Senators are also asking the FDA to clarify this issue. New York City is considering regulating the caffeine in energy drinks and requiring accurate labeling so consumers know how much caffeine they are getting in each can or energy shot.


Another issue is what happens when you start mixing these herbal stimulants with other ingredients. Adding sugar to caffeine and a wide mix of amino acids and other substances becomes outright dangerous. In fact, investigations are beginning to look into these combination products, often labeled energy drinks because their stimulating qualities have caused alarm.


Kids, teens and young adults are the most drawn to these energy drinks for their quick uppers and stay up all night, side effects.


But, why is anybody looking to a canned drink for energy?


Consider the simple answer, energy begins with sleep. Everybody knows this!  Everybody knows how you feel when you miss a night of sleep.  Bottom line, you're tired, you have no energy.  When you don't get enough quality sleep, the first drug of choice is caffeine.


I've argued before, drugs should not be masquerading as food. Energy drinks do this every day, they are not food.  They should be labeled with all the same information required on a dietary supplement. We should understand not to substitute good food  for a drink in a can. Caffeine is a drug.  A useful drug like so many botanicals, including so many of the Chinese herb botanicals I talk about here.


The Benefits of Caffeine blog here



Chinese Herb Research Now Includes GlaxoSmithKlein Pharmaceuticals

What's new in Traditional Chinese Medicine? 

Well for starters, bigger players want a piece of what they see as a huge potential profit maker.  Chinese herbs, have become the latest interest for drug companies.

The pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline is opening a new research unit in China to look at traditional Chinese medicine.


"Traditional chinese medicine is a well-established system of medical practice developed through thousands of years of empirical testing and refinement of herbal mixtures, and relies generally on clinical experience," said Zang Jingwu, senior vice president Glaxo and head of R&D China.


The relatively new R&D unit is working with academic TCM experts in China to develop new TCM products for the benefits of patients in China and the rest of the world. The strategy is to integrate the existing TCM knowledge of diseases with modern drug discovery.


"We are developing novel therapeutic TCM mixtures as prescription medicines through innovative extraction methods and combinations, and we use clinical data/evidence to differentiate from existing TCM products on the market," he said.


The company's R&D China center was founded in 2007 with a focus on neurosciences. So far, the center has developed into a fully integrated global R&D organization in China to deliver medicine globally and for China.


Only one question:  what will it cost us consumers?  Right now Chinese herbal products are cheap compared to drugs!  What can we expect once the big drug companies want a share of the market?





Traditional Chinese Herb For Prostate

Herbs for prostate cancerA new drug is being resesarched for its early success in the treatment of prostate cancer. This is noteworth here because the drug is derived from a Chinese herb.


Like so many of our modern pharmaceuticals, the chemicals for this drug comes from a plnat which has been part of  Traditional Chinese Medicine Materica Medica for several centuries, and for prostate cancer treatment it looks very promising. 


The drug called Celastrol, is extracted from the "Thunder God Vine" Tripterygium wilfordii which has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.  There are many Chinese herbs with anti-inflammatory effects and you can read about some of them in other blogs listed below. 


The drug seems to suppress the activity of a protein called p23. New research shows that p23 independently plays a key role in the way prostate tumors are fueled by the male hormone testosterone.


"Excitingly, drugs that block p23 such as celastrol.. have shown early promise in treating several diseases, such as arthritis and asthma, meaning this research is already a step closer to the clinic," said study leader Dr Charlotte Bevan, from Imperial College London, whose findings are reported in the journal Molecular Endocrinology.


"The next stage will be to test the effects of such drugs on prostate cancer cells in the lab."


Dr Julie Sharp, senior science information manager at the charity, said: "These results provide an alternative route by which scientists could potentially target prostate cancer. What's more, p23 has a much more defined role in the cell than HSP90, meaning that drugs that target it could potentially have fewer side effects than HSP90 inhibitors. We hope these findings will lead to better treatment options for men with prostate cancer."



Ginger Root – Arthritis to Heart Disease An Amazing Chinese Herb

natural herbal energy boostersWhat is it about ginger that makes it such a versatile root? 


This underground stem is acrid and pungent and yet it treats an upset stomach, diarrhea, nausea and a laundry list of other ailments. 


Here are a few in alphabethical order: altitude sickness, arthritis, common cold, colic, adjunct therapy during chemotherapy,  digestive aid,fatigue, flu, headaches, heart conditions, inflammation, motion sickness, menstrual cramps ok…. that is half the alphabet and quite enough.


What most people don’t know about ginger (zingiber officinale) is the secret in this Chinese herb, this medicinal root, is all about the dosage. 


Whether you are drinking ginger tea or taking ginger supplements in capsules or in extracts, tinctures, and packets of concentrated extracts, you’ve got to consider the two “D’s” (Dosage and Duration).  Another important consideration is potency of the prouduct your using, because the volatile oils, gingerols and shogaols are the beneficial components. Consider buying only full spectrum herbal extracts because ginger root also contains  sulfides, polyphenolics, carotenoids, coumarins, saponins, plant sterols, curcumins, and phthalides all of which contribute to gingers effectiveness.


Dosage matters! 

Duration of use also matters.

Ginger root has been heavily researched since its origins are steeped in Chinese medicine, Auyervedic Medicine and even Arabic medicine.  Ginger root has been found to help reduce the risks associated with heart disease because it is a natural blood thinner. This can be helpful in treating heart disease, where blood vessels can become blocked and lead to heart attack or stroke.  Certainly more studies are needed. 


Common Dosage Guidelines:

For pregnancy related nausea and vomiting human studies suggests that 1g daily of ginger may be effective for nausea and vomiting in pregnant women when used for short periods (no longer than 4 days). Several studies have found that ginger is better than placebo in relieving morning sickness.


Research is mixed as to whether ginger can help reduce nausea and vomiting following surgery. Two studies found that 1g of ginger root before surgery reduced nausea as well as a leading medication. In one of these studies, women who received ginger also needed fewer medications for nausea after surgery.


Ginger extract has long been used in Traditional Chinese medical practices to warm the interior particular helpful for digestion. Ginger is considered a warming herb in Chinese herbal medicine and for this reason it is particularly useful for those who have any of the above conditions with an overall cold constitution.  


Among all the uses, particulary useful is gingers abilitiy to lower cholesterol and help prevent blood from clotting.


Pediatric Don’ t give ginger to children under 2. Ginger may be used by children over 2 years of age to treat nausea, stomach cramping, and headaches.


Standardized dose: Take 75 – 2,000 mg in divided doses with food, standardized to contain 4% volatile oils or 5% total pungent compounds including 6-gingerol or 6-shogaol.


For nausea, gas, or indigestion: 2 – 4 grams of fresh root daily (0.25 – 1.0 g of powdered root) or 1.5 – 3.0 mL (30 – 90 drops) liquid extract daily.


To prevent vomiting, take 1 gram of powdered ginger (1/2 tsp) or its equivalent, every 4 hours as needed (not to exceed 4 doses daily), or 2 ginger capsules (1 gram), 3 times daily.


You may also chew a 1/4 oz piece of fresh ginger when needed.


For pregnancy-induced vomiting, use 250 mg 4 times daily for up to 4 days.


Talk to your doctor before taking ginger if you are taking blood thinning medications.


For arthritis pain: 250 mg 4 times daily for several months.


Ask your Licensed Acupuncturist or Herbalist to help you determine the right dose. Adults In general, don’ t take more than 4g of ginger per day, including food sources. Pregnant women should not take more than 1g per day.





Research Papers and References “Characterization of food antioxidants, illustrated using commercial garlic and ginger preparations” by Okezie I. Aruoma, Jeremy P.E. Spencera, Donna Warrena, Peter Jennera, John Butlerb, Barry Halliwella in Food Chemistry Volume 60, Issue 2, October 1997, Pages 149-156


Antioxidants in Food. Abstract: www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814695002545 “Intake of Garlic and Its Bioactive Components” by Harunobu Amagase, Brenda L. Petesch, Hiromichi Matsuura, Shigeo Kasuga and Yoichi Itakura. Journal of Nutrition. 2001;131:955S-962S.


Abstract: http://jn.nutrition.org/content/131/3/955S.short “Traditional Indian spices and their health significance” by Kamala Krishnaswamy. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2008;17(S1):265-268. Full article: http://apjcn.nhri.org.tw/server/apjcn/volume17/vol17suppl.1/265-268S15-2.pdf


“Changes in Platelet Function and Susceptibility of Lipoproteins to Oxidation Associated with Administration of Aged Garlic Extract” by Steiner, M.; Lin, R. S. In Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology: June 1998 – Volume 31 – Issue 6 – pp 904-908. Abstract: http://journals.lww.com /cardiovascularpharm/Abstract/1998/06000


/Changes_in_Platelet_Function_and_Susceptibility_of.14.aspx “Health-promoting properties of common herbs” by Winston J Craig in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 70, No. 3, 491S-499S, September 1999. Abstract: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10479221


Fox New Story: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/07/24/6-motion-sickness-remedies/#ixzz21c37OCI6