Liver fibrosis – how acupuncture and herbs integrate to help healing

Liver fibrosis happens when the proteins including collagen surrounding liver cells start to accumulate excessively.  Liver fibrosis is often a result of all types of liver diseases.

Science used to consider liver fibrosis to be irreversible condition, but recent evidence suggests the opposite.

Acupuncture has been increasingly used to treat chronic liver diseases. And we’re obviously interested to know how acupuncture can be helpful with liver fibrosis. A study published in the current issue of peer-reviewed international journal Acupuncture in Medicine tried to understand what exactly acupuncture does in combination with curcumin for liver fibrosis.

They found that acupuncture significantly enhances curcumin effects for liver fibrosis. They also found biochemical changes at the cellular level.  The effects were attributed to acupuncture and curcumin disrupting platelet-derived growth factor ? receptor/extracellular signal-regulated kinase signalling and stimulates extracellular matrix degradation. Curcumin is the principal active ingredient of turmeric.  This is yet another great example of how acupuncture and herbal medicines go hand in hand and enhance each others effect.

Ref: Acupuncture combined with curcumin disrupts platelet-derived growth factor ? receptor/extracellular signal-regulated kinase signalling and stimulates extracellular matrix degradation in carbon tetrachloride-induced hepatic fibrosis in rats. Acupuncture in Medicine doi:10.1136/acupmed-2012-010167

Chinese medicine relieves eczema in children

Researchers from Hong Kong confirmed that Chinese medicine effectively relieve eczema in children. 42 kids who took the Chinese medicine had their eczema improved and their use of corticosteroids was reduced. Other 43 kids suffering from eczema took a placebo did not observe the same effect.

The paper was published in the August issue of the British Journal of Dermatology.
The Chinese medicine (five herbs) used to relieve eczema were Flos lonicerae (Jinyinhua), Herba menthae (Bohe), Cortex moutan (Danpi), Rhizoma atractylodis (Cangzhu) and Cortex phellodendri (Huangbai).

Diabetes – bitter melon increases insulin secretion by 160%

Bitter melon, a delicacy, which I enjoyed so much, when I lived in China has many healing properties. It is known to lower blood sugar it is also known for its’ anti-cancer properties.

Now a team of Chinese scientists discovered that prepared in traditional way extract can increase the insulin production by 160% and has repairing effects on pancreatic ?-cells, responsible for insulin production. Good news for diabetes sufferers. But don’t necessarily expect these effects from fresh bitter melon. To have these properties the melon has to be dried and decocted (cooked) traditional way.