Butterbur May Protect Against Migraine Headache

July 02, 2004

Recently the Department of Neurology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine reviewed emerging treatment options for migraine headache. Along with several new drugs, the researchers reviewed Petasites (Butterbur) and Coenzyme Q10 as two useful options for migraine prophylaxis. .The article appears in the June edition of Current Pain and Headache Reports.

In a study of Butterbur for migraine headache prevention, the herb decreased the number of headaches per patient from 3.4 per month to 1.8 per month in a short time (3 months). The study appears in the March 2004 issue of the journal European Neurology.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

Petasites is a fascinating herb. Studies are demonstrating good benefit for asthma, allergies, and migraines. Recent research indicates that migraine headache is more common than once though because a percentage of what are thought to be sinus headaches are in fact migraine headaches, in fact a Mayo Clinic study uncovered that 90% of the headaches thought to be sinus were, or probably were migraine headaches. Based on a number of recent successful studies we have chosen to incorporate a standardized-pharmaceutical grade, alkaloid free Petasites as one of the ingredients in our Migraine-Ex capsules.

Resveratrol Prevents Paraplegia in Rabbits After a Lack of Blood Flow to their Spine.

Test rabbits were given either Resveratrol (a large dose) or placebo before the inducement of temporary spinal cord ischemia (temporary block of blood flow). 5 animals in the placebo group became paraplegic (paralysis of the lower half of the body including both legs), 5 animals in the Resveratrol group had normal neurological-spinal function. The Resveratrol protected the spinal cord from injury. Similar protection has been documented in the heart, brain, and kidneys. The study is published in the July issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

A large dose was administered to these rabbits, equivalent to over 700mg in a 170 pound adult but it was amazingly protective. The Resveratrol 100mg is desirable if you are exercising, body building, or competing in a sport for the benefit of ligaments, tendons, muscles, and joints.

Resveratrol and Quercetin Inhibited Inflammation in Human Lung Epithelial Cells

Both Resveratrol and Quercetin decreased inflammatory mechanisms (pathways) and the expression of inflammatory immune system chemicals in human lung epithelial cells. The effects of both Resveratrol and Quercetin were stronger than the corticosteroid drug dexamethasone, a drug commonly used for asthma and severe inflammatory conditions. Dexamethasone is similar to the drugs prednisone and hydrocortisone. The study is published in the June 4th 2004 issue of the American Journal of Physiology, Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology.

Green Tea Works in Many Ways to Protect the Brain

The degeneration of brain tissue that takes place in Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and other neurodegenerative diseases has multiple mechanisms of destruction occurring at roughly the same time. There is concurrent inflammation, free radical damage, glutamate excitotoxicity, metal instability, and a decrease of protective antioxidants, with decreased function of coenzyme Q10 pathways. The current thinking (which I strongly agree with - Jerry H.) is that a drug targeted at one particular target is ineffective - a good example would be the cholinesterase inhibiting drugs such as Aricept that temporarily boost memory and cognitive skills but do not slow down brain tissue destruction or decrease the risk of being institutionalized. Green Tea catechin polyphenols (EGCG, Quercetin, etc.) protect the brain from issue destruction in a number of ways - strong antioxidant protection, increased release of survival genes that protect brain cells, increased ability of cells to signal each other (communication between cells is improved), regulation of proper brain energy protection, and a possible normalization of coenzyme Q10 pathways. The study appears in the August 2004 issue of the journal Free Radicals in Biology and Medicine.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

Other mechanisms of brain tissue destruction include beta-amyloid plaque distribution, glycation, and Homocysteine oxidation. Nutrients that may have multiple-protective activities in the brain include Resveratrol, Turmeric, L-Carnosine, Coenzyme Q10, Piracetam, Vinpocetine, GliSODin (absorbable SOD with Catalase), Ultimate Detoxification Formula (to aid glutathione-enzymes), and Homocysteine Reductase.

Multiple Cups of Green Tea Daily Decrease the Risk of Coronary Artery Disease

203 Patients underwent extensive coronary angiography in Japan. 109 had significant coronary stenosis (hardening of the coronary arteries - the biggest killer in America), and 94 patients were free of the condition. The more green tea the study subjects drank on a daily basis, the less likely they were to have coronary artery disease. The individuals free of disease consumed in the area of 6 cups a day. The study appears in the July 2004 issue of the Japanese Circulation Journal

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

When I designed our Green Tea extract I made sure of a number of things - that it was caffeine free, that it came from an organic source free of DDT and other pesticides, and that 30 drops were the equivalent of five whole cups of Green Tea Polyphenols, especially EGCG.