Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier - The Best Alternative Medicine

Titles
The Best Alternative Medicine
excerpts
reviews
order now at Amazon.com

New Medicine: Complete Family Health Guide
bypass navigation
Sound Mind, Sound Body
bypass navigation
Stress Free for Good
Resources
Resources for Specific Conditions
Latest Research You Can Use
Podcasts


Info
About Dr. Pelletier
Contact Dr. Pelletier
Lectures
Corporate Health Improvement Program (C H I P)
P R Photos
TV Appearances and Interviews
Site Map

| print page
 

Chaparral: Herbal Medications, What Does Not Work

Chaparral (Larrea tridentata and other species), or creosote bush, is a desert shrub that was a traditional Native American remedy for rheumatism and other illnesses. Chaparral would in itself be a misnomer, as chaparral refers literally to dwarf evergreen oak, and broadly to the brushy areas where they and other desert shrubs grow. In California, the creosite bush is one of many common desert shrubs. Its primary active constituent, NDGA, is a powerful antioxidant that has been valued commercially for its preservative properties. More recently, chaparral has been investigated for possible anticancer activity, but that research is inconclusive.

In the 1990s, isolated reports began to appear about liver disease from chaparral. Thirteen cases showed evidence of liver toxicity, with symptoms appearing three to fifty-two weeks after ingestion, usually resolving one to seventeen weeks after intake of the herb stopped. Four individuals progressed to cirrhosis, and two required liver transplants. While chaparral may indeed cause liver damage, its toxic impact is not well established. In some of the reported cases, the people were also taking drugs with established negative effects on the liver, and others had a history of liver disease.

For a time, the American Herbal Products Association requested its members to voluntarily stop selling chaparral. Then, after a medical review of cases of liver dysfunction, they merely suggested that chaparral products be labeled with the appropriate cautions, and with a phone number for reporting adverse effects.

 

Return to Excerpts List

From THE BEST ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: WHAT WORKS? WHAT DOES NOT? by Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier.
Copyright © 2000 by Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier, Inc.
Reprinted by permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc., New York, New York.


Return to Top

 

Unless otherwise indicated, Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier. All Rights Reserved.
Web Design by Almost Everything Communications