Research


The social patient network CureTogether reported in February the results of study among 227 people who rated 31 treatments for bipolar disorder. It is one of the first such studies that blend social media, patient-stated outcomes with integrated therapy options.

“Patients rate regimented sleep, reduced alcohol, and exercise as helpful for their symptoms, as well as yoga, mindfulness meditation, and Lamictal*.” (more…)

NCCAM Director
Josephine Briggs

In the last couple of years, NCCAM has gradually developed its web site to be more responsive to public interest in CAM and integrative medicine. In May it took another step and launched a blog written by director Josephine Briggs, MD. Readers may make comments on each post, which are reviewed before being added.

In her post of May 24, “Integrative”—What Is in a Word?
Briggs focuses on a topic of signal importance as the field begins to become far more integrated with and understood by convention practice and therapy: the definition of “integrative medicine.” (more…)

The Truth is In There: Mining for Integrative Medicine Outcomes

Consumer and practitioner demand may accelerate CAM inclusion in the inpatient settings, and hospital leadership should be … prepared to engage their constituencies regarding its place within the healthcare delivery construct.

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Newly blended collaborations on the integrative health landscape:

  • MD Anderson: $4.5 mm for study of Yoga and Cancer
  • Greenwhich (CT) Hospital: Healing Touch brings faster recuperation
  • Review of 14-years of research shows benefits of Qigong and Tai Chi

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Homo Sapiens: Coqtivore?

Heribert Watzke, Nestle

In this entertaining presentation at the TED Global conference in London last July, Heribert Watzke, a food research scientist at Nestle, focuses on two notable if rarely connected factors in human health:

      • Humans are the only species to cook food
      • The human gut is infused with massive amounts of nerve cells; a veritable brain itself

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National Cancer Institute Funds 20,000-person Trial in Early 2010

In a recently released video NCI’s Dr. John Milner, chief of the Division of Cancer Prevention’s Nutritional Science Research Group, describes how changing scientific perceptions of the medicinal power of foods and the knowledge of the human genome is influencing cancer research.

Citing “rather compelling evidence” that shows “30% of cancers are related to dietary habits,” Milner observed that in cancer-averting diets, “You must assume that those foods are supplying some bioactive food component.”

“It is an area that somehow we have thought is very simple,” he notes.  “But is not very simple.” (more…)

On Nov. 9  I had the opportunity to participate in a symposium that had the feeling of a seminal moment for the integrative health community. The “Complementary and Integrative Medicine (CIM) Stakeholder Symposium” held in Baltimore focused on changes now underway that may well redefine how evidence is defined in medical research. The trend has evolved over the last decade, independently of the growth of integrative practice. It has come about largely because of dissatisfaction with the results of narrowly constructed but long accepted traditional research methodologies (i.e., random controlled trials).

As a result, in the next two years, the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) will be channeling $800 million into a formal program for Comparative Effectiveness Research.

(more…)

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