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Hoodia Cactus Appetite Control Occurs in the Brain

Nov 03, 2004

The steroidal glycosides from Hoodia Gordonii cactus when used in animal experiments show a definite pharmacolgical activity in the central nervous system. The hypothalamus is a part of the brain that senses food and nutrient intake according to mounting evidence. The Hoodia Gordonii glycosides increase ATP content in the hypothalamic neurons by 50% to 150%. This effect on ATP may trigger the approriate response to food intake and appetite control. Giving Hoodia deceases food intake by 40% to 60% over a 24 hour period. The study was performed at the Division of Endocriology, Halbert Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology, Brown Medical School, Providence, Rhode Island, and is published in the September 2004 issue of Brain Research.

Coenzyme Q10 may Decease Toxicity from Chemotherapy

A systematic review of oral supplementation with coenzyme Q10 and its ability to decrease toxicity from chemotherapy was performed at the Peninsula Medical School, Universities of Exeter and Pymouth. The study included 3 randomized clinical trials. The results of the analysis shows that Coenzyme Q 10 supplementation decreases the toxicity of Adiramycin and similar chemotherapeutic agents to the heart muscle and to the liver during cancer treatment. The study is published in the November 1st, 2004 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid Helps Burning Mouth Syndrome - a Neuropathy

The antioxidant Alpha-Lipoic Acid was given to two groups of patients with burning mouth syndrome (BMS), the first group of 20 patients had already tried tranquilizing drugs to help with their neuropathy, the second group of 20 patients with BMS had not tried tranquilizers. The Alpha-Lipic Acid helped both groups but worked much better in the group that had not used tranquilizers. The study is published in the Novembr 18th issue of the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology.

Restless Legs Syndrome Tied Into Low Iron

Typically a patient with restless legs syndrome has an intense, often irresistable urge to move the legs because of an unpleasant crawly sensation in the legs This happens especially when resting or trying to sleep. Some people with restless legs syndrome (RLS) have had poor sleep quality for years. Up to 10% of the US population has RLS. Recently, researchers form Pennsylvania State University found that low levels of iron in certain parts of the brain was linked to RLS. Experts at both Penn State and Johns Hopkins University have uncovered how a lack of iron affects the brain and leads to RLS. When a person has low iron, receptors in the brain rev up the production of an enzyme called tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). TH increases the production of the neurotransmitter dopamine (a movement controlling brain chemical), and dopamine sends a message to the rest of the body and conveys the rains message to the legs causing body ,movement. Unfortunately, dopamine also requires iron to function normally, and the message to the legs becomes scrambled triggering the unpleasant sensations. It is not yet known how to control the dopamine, how to regulate the iron levels in the brain, or even if iron supplementation helps. The study is published in the October 2004 issue of Neuroscience.