The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    Effect of diet on irritable bowel syndrome

    Studies suggest that in one quarter of patients, symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) may be caused or exacerbated by diet.

    Researchers from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, at Chapel Hill, reviewed the data from a clinician’s perspective.

    First, the details.

    • A narrative review — a summary of studies evaluated from the reviewers’ experience — was conducted.

    And, the results.

    • Despite a long history of enthusiastic use, fiber is marginally beneficial.
      • Insoluble fiber may worsen symptoms.
      • Some patients with IBS, especially those with constipation, will improve with increased intake of soluble fiber.
      • Prebiotic fibers have not been adequately tested.
    • Daily use of peppermint oil is effective in relieving IBS symptoms.
    • The usefulness of probiotics in the form of foods such as live-culture yogurt and buttermilk for IBS symptoms is not established.

    The bottom line?
    The authors concluded, “In clinical practice, it is very difficult to establish that a patient’s symptoms result from an adverse reaction to food.”

    “A modified exclusion diet and stepwise reintroduction of foods or trials of eliminating classes of food may be useful.”

    6/30/09 19:45 JR

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