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Chinese Medicine

Good or bad? - While Chinese medicine is causing the extinction of endangered species, Chinese herbs are turning up more and more in Western doctors' offices. We are learning more and more new ways to heal ourselves--and our planet (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to this show).

Emodin, a natural product that can be extracted from various Chinese herbs, may be able to reduce the symptoms of type 2 diabetes. Researchers who gave emodin to mice with diet-induced obesity found that it lowered their blood glucose and improved their insulin resistance. It also caused them to lose weight and body fat. PhysOrg.com quotes researcher Ying Leng as saying, "Our work showed that this natural extract from Chinese herbs could point the way to a new way of helping people with type 2 diabetes as well as other metabolic disorders."

One ancient combination of Chinese herbs that has been used for over 1,800 years has been found to ease the side effects of a modern medical treatment: chemotherapy. Another may be a cure for type 2 diabetes. The herb combination reduced the gastrointestinal side effects of chemotherapy in mice, while actually enhancing the effects of the cancer treatment. PhysOrg. Quotes pharmacologist Yung-Chi Cheng as saying, "Chemotherapy causes great distress for millions of patients, but PHY-906 has multiple biologically active compounds which can act on multiple sources of discomfort. This combination of chemotherapy and herbs represents a marriage of Western and Eastern approaches to the treatment of cancer."

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