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Natural Therapies for Chronic Diseases

by icontrolmyhealth
Growing awareness of self-health through natural therapies and practices is growing worldwide, so is the misinformation driven by commercial interests. We at IControlMyHealth, a non-profit charitable organization, through this newsletter and our website – www.icontrolmyhealth.org provide you with scientific and unbiased information so that you can make sound health decisions in conjunction with your healthcare provider (HCP). Remember, just because something is natural, does not mean it is good and will benefit you. Always look for source of information, the underlying objective, and check with your HCP.
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Use of Complementary Health Approaches in the US

Today, more and more Americans and others around the world are becoming conscious towards their own health. This is resulting in growing use of complementary approaches. Following are the highlights from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS):

  • In 2012, 33.2% of U.S. adults used complementary health approaches. This is similar to the percentages in 2007 (35.5%) and 2002 (32.3%).
  • 11.6% of U.S. children age 4 to 17 used complementary health approaches in 2012. There was no meaningful change from 2007, when 12.0% used them.
  • In 2012, as in 2007 and 2002, the most commonly used complementary approach was natural products (dietary supplements other than vitamins and minerals). 17.7% of adults and 4.9% of children age 4 to 17 used natural products.

More Key Facts About Adults

 Natural Products

  • Fish oil was the #1 natural product among adults, with 7.8% using it in 2012.
  • Adults’ use of fish oil, probiotics or prebiotics, and melatonin increased between 2007 and 2012.
  • Adults’ use of glucosamine/chondroitin, echinacea, and garlic decreased between 2007 and 2012.

Mind and Body Approaches

  • The mind and body approaches most commonly used by adults include yoga, chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, meditation, and massage therapy.
  • The percentage of adults who practice yoga has increased substantially, from 5.1% in 2002 to 6.1% in 2007 and 9.5% in 2012.

More Key Facts About Children

Natural Products

  • Fish oil was the natural product most commonly used by children, with 1.1% using it in 2012. This is a change from 2007, when echinacea was #1.
  • Melatonin was the #2 natural product used by children in 2012. Its use increased substantially from 2007 to 2012.

Mind and Body Approaches

  • The mind and body approaches most commonly used by children include chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, yoga, meditation, and massage therapy.
  • Yoga has become more popular among children, just as it has among adults. 3.1% of U.S. children practiced yoga in 2012, compared to 2.3% in 2007.

Reference: https://nccih.nih.gov/research/statistics/NHIS/2012

To learn more about different treatments, please go to www.icontrolmyhealth.org – Treatment Options

Fish Oil: The Most Popular Natural Product in the US

The National Center for Health Statistics conducts National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) every year, to get an overview of health status of Americans. For the survey each year, interviewers visit between 35,000 and 40,000 households to ask questions about the health status of their families. Complementary and Alternative Medicines (CAM) therapies have recently gained tremendous importance in the treatment of various chronic illnesses. Therefore, the NHIS includes questions about complementary health approaches every five years in the interviews.

As per the recent report, based on data from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), fish oil was found to be the most common natural product used by 18.8 million adults in the US. In addition, the results also revealed that use of this natural ingredient showed increase and nearly 8 million more adults used fish oil in 2012 than in 2007.

Why is Fish Oil So Popular?

Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are a group of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are important for a number of functions in the body. Since the body cannot produce these essential fatty acids you have to get them through food. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fish, such as salmon, tuna, halibut, trout, etc.  It is also obtained from other seafoods, including algae and krill, some plants, and nut oils. Moderate evidence suggests that omega-3 fatty acids can lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, depression and some other illnesses. These supplements usually do not have any major negative side effects. However, there is no conclusive evidence to recommend the routine use or replace conventional medicines with omega-3 fatty acid in management of any disease. Here we have given a proprietary rating for Fish oil/ omega-3 fatty acids in management of different illnesses. IControlMyHealth has developed this proprietary rating on the basis of available evidence of efficacy, safety, comparison to the standard of care (conventional therapies), and convenience/availability.

Health Condition How it works IControlMyHealth Rating
Diabetes Omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory benefits, help reduce triglycerides, and may have a protective benefit in glucose metabolism (but exact mechanism are unknown)
*

(Not recommended; Use with extreme caution after consultation with your HCP)

Alzheimer’s Disease Omega-3 fatty acids facilitate growth and function of nerve cells in the brain
***

Promising Therapy (Can be used after consultation with HCP)

Heart Disease Omega-3 fatty acids decrease triglyceride levels, slow growth rate of atherosclerotic plaque, and lower blood pressure
***

Promising Therapy (for lowering cholesterol, can be used after consultation with HCP)

*

Not Recommended (for lowering blood pressure)

Depression Omega-3 fatty acids are believed to cause changes in the messaging service between brain cells which is interrupted during depression
***

Promising Therapy (for depression, can be used after consultation with HCP)

If you wish to read more about omega-3 fatty acids, please visit https://nccih.nih.gov/health/omega3/introduction.htm

Reference: Most Used Natural Products. 7.8% of U.S. adults (18.8 million) used fish oil/omega-3/DHA, EPA fatty acids (https://nccih.nih.gov/research/statistics/NHIS/2012/natural-products/omega3

FAQs
IControlMyHealth team has done extensive research on the benefits of yoga across many diseases. Following is a brief summary of how yoga can help in some of the leading diseases:

What Dietary Changes Can Reduce Symptoms of Menopause?

It is possible to reduce some menopause symptoms through diet. You need to reduce the intake of caffeine, tea, alcohol, spicy foods, and salt. Also, ensure that you get sufficient amounts of vitamin D in your diet. Include soy and linseed bread, soybeans, tofu, whole grains, and legumes regularly in your meals. Soy is a good source of phytoestrogens (plant estrogens), which may reduce the risk of high cholesterol and blood pressure.

Is Consumption Of Wine A Healthy Option For Reducing Risk of Heart Disease?

Red wine is believed to slow the process of atherosclerosis. The evidence suggests that red wine has positive health benefit in lowering heart disease and associated mortality. However, too much alcohol consumption has been shown repeatedly to contribute to cardiovascular disorders. It would be logical to assume that wine consumed in low to moderate amounts (two to seven drinks/week) would not have any harmful effects; it would rather manage to keep the cardiologist away. Are you wondering if the claims made by medical world regarding wine consumption have any scientific basis?  Read more here

How Beneficial Are Herbal Supplements in Treatment of Eating Disorders?

Herbal drugs are used very commonly by people suffering from eating disorders, mainly to overcome the co-morbid depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Herbal drugs such as St. John’s Wort (SJW), Valerian, Chamomile are known to reduce the depressive symptoms. Although there are no clinical studies pertaining to use of these herbs in eating disorder, their efficacy has been proven in depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders, which occurs as a health consequence of condition such as like binge eating disorder.

What’s in the News?

You and Your Partner Together Can Live a Healthy Lifestyle

Valentine ’s Day is just over and many of you are still cherishing the beautiful moments spent with your love. While the candlelight dinners, surprise gifts and promises have made you happy, here is something more we would like to add. A recent study published in JAMA Internal Medicine suggests that cohabiting couples who have a ‘healthier’ partner are more likely to get influences to change their lifestyle to make it healthier. Dr Sarah Jackson, lead author of the study, suggests that if you plan to quit smoking, take exercise, or lose weight, do it with your partner as it increases your chances of success. The findings of this study send out an important message to the couples that involving partners in behavior change interventions may help improve outcomes.

So, those of you who want your spouse/partner to quit smoking or start exercising, start doing it yourself first. For those of you struggling to shed some weight here are some great fun date activity ideas. These are not only perfect for spending quality time together but will also help you burn calories and be healthier.
Lose Weight While You Date