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Herbsprout is a webblog and podcast dedicated to sharing the health benefits of herbs, food, innovations related to our gut microbiome. Herbsprout seeks to bridge the vast chasm dividing the mainstream medical community and alternative medicine.

Microbiome Health Chart, October 2020 (click on chart to ZOOM IN)

This chart shows connections between our gut microbiome and various ailments or diseases, and offers food, herbal remedies, or supplements which may give relief to those ailments by positively impacting the microbiome.
This is not medical advice, so consult your doctor before making any health related decisions. Copyright (C) MobileZinger LLC.
#ai #artificialintelligence #bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #machinelearning #mindbody #plantnutrition #spices

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How gut bacteria can enhance cancer treatment

The journal Science and an August 13 2020 article by The New Atlas describe how certain species of gut bacteria can improve cancer immunotherapy efficacy. The results are based on a study of mice and shows a new bacteria metabolite-immune pathway.

A study led by principle investigator Kathy McCoy, from the University of Calgary, isolated three particular bacterial species associated with positive immunotherapy. These were Bifidobacterium pseudolongum, Lactobacillus johnsonii and Olsenella.

The study of four mice also found that bacterial metabolite inosine plays a role in activating anti-tumor T-cells.

#ai #alternativemedicine #anticancer #bacteria #datascience #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #integrativemedicine #plantnutrition

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Microbiome is everywhere in wildlife from fish to honey bees

Microbiome is everywhere in w... Source: Adobe stock images Source: Adobe stock images
A May 11 2020 article by suggests that healthier fish from the fish farm industry which makes up almost half of what we eat (45%) begins with healthier gut bacteria in the fish. Research on "fish guts" is led by the aquaculture or fish farming industry to bring benefits to consumers; healthier fish, cheaper but higher quality produce, according to the report (1).

Reseachers are applying and testing the effects of alternative plant and insect based proteins to feed fish. These have different effects on the fish gut microbiome, and ultimately their health.

Gut microbiome populations exist in almost everything we consume, from fish and red meat to honey. Social bees collect microbes like Bifidobacterium from feeding on fermenting honey, according to an April 14 2020 study by University of Washington candidate Lila Westreich (2). She wrote about this in The Conversation. Westreich found that social bees collect microbes like Bifidobacterium from feeding on fermenting honey, according to the article (2). Research published in Plos One found 13 lactic acid bacteria that inoculate and preserve pollen in the hives. These include Lactobacillus kunkeei, and Alpha 2.2 (Acetobacteraceae), found in stored pollen and honey (3).

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#bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #mentalhealth #plantnutrition #probiotics

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Ginseng & Ginger are two healthy TCMs during stressful times

Source: getty images Source: getty images Ginseng & Ginger are tw...
A May 17 2020 article by Yahoo News suggests you might consider incorporating some traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) ideas into your daily practice. There's much to choose from- qi gong, acupressure/ acupuncture, teas and tonics, and food. Yahoo News recommended these TCM remedies in this order.

Given that food and teas are more prevalent and widely used, let's look at it from the opposite order. Beginning with the universally accepted herb ginger, which contains Gingerol. Regular consumption of it couldn't hurt. Gingerol is the main bioactive compound in ginger that is anti-inflammatory and a digestive aid. This is based on studies referenced by the Healthline article below.

Ginseng has also been tested and proven to boost the immune system with its bioactive compounds, ginsenosides and gintonin, according to WebMD. Regarding both ginger and ginseng, there have been broad but varying unproven claims that these food based herbs provide other benefits such as lowering blood sugar and treating cancer. However, consuming them in moderation can help and is recommended.

For more information see: ; and
#ai #bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #mentalhealth #plantnutrition #probiotics #psychobiotics

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Three Classical Text of Ayurveda

Three Classical Text of Ayurveda
There are three main classical text of Ayurveda:

1) Charaka Samhita - is the book of internal medicine and includes the eight systems of the body. This also comprises the basic concepts of Ayurveda, the Ayurvedic School of Physicians.

2) Sushruta Samhita - is the book of surgery. This book includes detailed description of surgical instruments and what they are used for, not only surgical instruments familiar to the west, but also eastern instruments such as needles for Chinese acupuncture, for example.

3) Ashtanga Sanraha & Ashtaga Hyridayam - The Hridayam over 7,500 verses, is written in poetry and prose. Both works have been dated about the same time and are believed to come after the Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita. It outlines the sub kapha doshas for the first time with emphasis on treating the physical body.

More information about the Ayurveda classical text is available at The Ayurveda Institute,
#Indianmedicine #ayurveda #bacteria #diet #easternmedicine #gutmicrobiome #health #herbalmedicine #herbs #plantnutrition #spices

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eJIM and CAM - Japan's role in east-west relations; why not medicine too?

It is not by any means anything unique for Japan to play a role in East- West integration and collaboration. From the opening up of Japan in 1848 when American Commodore Perry reached its shores to promote trade to the introduction of western Christianity at the arrival of the Jesuits led by Francis Xavier in 1549, Japan has always played an integral role in East- West relations.

Fast forward to this century, in his final interview with Asia Pacific Economic Review writer Steve Barth, Edward Demming reached the pinnacle of Japan's role in integrating western management principles into Japan, which in turn reversed by way of the likes of UCLA professor William Ouchi and his bestselling book on Japanese management style, "Theory Z". Japan has always been a synergistic doorway to the west, and arguably the west's most valuable portal to the east.

So why not in health care? Japan is one of the world’s most technologically advanced health care systems while at the same time still holds onto traditional medicine or Kampo. Japan Ministry of Health and Welfare created acronyms for its role in integrative medicine, and published it in cooperation with Shimane University Medical School. It believes the Japanese health care system is uniquely placed in facilitating the integration of evidence- based Japanese integrative medicine or eJim. The more common term used today is "complementary and alternative medicine" or CAM which Japan seeks to bring into the mainstream core of its healthcare offerings. And it claims to be doing it backed by science, the aforementioned "evidence- based Japanese integrative medicine", or e-Jim (see for more information).

When we talk about eJIM however, it inevitably leads back to the origins of healthcare in Japan over a thousand years ago, traditional Japanese medicine or Kampo, and beyond the island's shores to China and TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) (see ). So how has Japan integrated traditional Kampo and alternative medicine into its modern western health care system?

The integration has become seamless, including widespread insurance coverage for Kampo. Today, Japan is taking it a step further, and -- a step deeper with proven, "evidence- based Japanese integrative medicine" or eJIM. Japan and other Asian countries like Singapore, India and China, are studying the chemical properties of herbs and foods, and making key connections to their influence on everything from our gut microbiome to our immune system.
#CAM #ai #alternativemedicine #bacteria #datascience #diet #eJIM #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #integrativemedicine #plantnutrition #spices

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Holobiome & Viome - "Microbiomes Intimate Role in Every Human Disease”

In a May 07, 2020 Science Magazine article, Holobiome announced it seeks to produce new treatments for depression and other disorders of the brain and nervous system beginning with isolating and culturing bacteria to benefit humans through our gut microbiome. The focus of the startup will be psychobiotics, those that address brain - related ailments, says company CEO, Phil Strandwitz. It seems the creation of startups like these are a sign of the times.

In an early interview by Herbsprout writer Chris Kenji Beer, Viome's CEO Naveen Jain takes us into a deeper understanding of the role of microbiomes to our health. “Every single chronic disease that we know of -- from Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, autism, depression, anxiety, obesity, autoimmune diseases, cancer-- every single one of these diseases have one thing in common, chronic inflammation. Every one of them is caused by microbiome. Think about this. Every one of these diseases is caused by microbiomes. And every time we take antibiotics we are killing those microbiomes.”
“A lot of people are saying ‘I know about microbiomes, what is so unique about it?’ The change is we not only know what is inside our gut, we are able to know exactly what they are doing.”


How do we know? “The latest wave (of Microbiome testing) is transcriptome. The transcriptome testing approach looks at the RNA and analyzes what the RNA of microbiomes are doing. The popular ‘16S sequencing’ of microbiomes testing is a twenty year old technology and is not able to do this.”
“What if you can find out exactly what is going on (inside the RNA of microbiomes)? What if you know what vitamins they are producing? What if you knew which specific compounds they are producing that cause inflammation? And from this data, what if you were able to figure out which specific content and combinations of food can actually address these inflammations more effectively than any prescription drugs we have available today?” asserts Jain.

Given the lag in treatments particularly for mental health treatments, Holobiome proposes to source and find microbe -based solutions to these ailments, or "psychobiotics". What if Holobiome and Viome are at the beginning of a new trend in health care where startups like Holobiome are among hundreds of companies focused on finding and deploying microbe- based solutions, gut bacteria treatments for different human diseases?

See article on Holobiome, ; and Viome .
#ai #bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #mentalhealth #plantnutrition #probiotics #psychobiotics

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EJim, Evidence- based medicine and Japan's place in modern medicine

EJim, Evidence- based medicin...
On reflection of the challenges facing innovation and the importance of establishing credibility in a relatively young sector of the medical industry, a key party to this process is evidence based herbs and foods in our health, particularly as it relates to our gut microbiome. In my view this brings Japanese and Japanese medicine to the forefront of bridging the gap between the idea of herbs and food as medicine and the mainstream medical community. In Japan they call it eJim, or "evidence- based Japanese integrative medicine".

Without credible integration, the whole idea of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and Indian Ayurvedic medicine face an almost insurmountable uphill climb in order to gain acceptance in the American mainstream medical community. Some of the highest rated institutions in these Asian health care approaches such as Bastyr University, have long been perceived by the mainstream medical community as advocating "quack" medicine.

How does one bridge this gap? The solution has to be a demonstrated effort in the naturopathic medicine communities to back their claims with scientific evidence. The evidence points toward how herbs and food influence our gut microbiome. This is where the integration starts and occurs. This is a rapidly growing sector of research and medicine. It is an opportunity to scientifically verify, give credence to the premises offired by eastern and naturopathic medicine (particularly those of India, China, and Japan). More information about Japan's eJim program is available here, .
#bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #mentalhealth #plantnutrition #probiotics

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Gut bacteria strains found to prevent onset of Parkinson's

Gut bacteria strains found to p...
Parkinson’s News Today reported on April 08, 2020 that several strains of a bacteria Bacillus subtilis "inhibits, delays, and reverses" the buildup of the protein alpha-synuclein in Parkinson’s disease patients. The study, “Probiotic Bacillus subtilis Protects against α-Synuclein Aggregation in C. elegans,” was originally published in the journal Cell Reports. The building up of the protein alpha-synuclein, or Lewy bodies, is known to create the degeneration of brain cells in Parkinson’s disease (see source: ).

Last September. Herbsprout reported that scientists found evidence that Parkinson's disease may originate in the gut. Building on that discovery, scientists found the strains of gut microbes that may prevent Parkinson's, each finding building on the next.

It is not yet conclusive whether or not the a-synuclein build up occurs first in our gut, and before or after it reaches the brain. This study was tested in round worms, and is proven as a preventive measure. It is not able to treat Parkinson's disease but prevent it's growth. While further studies are required , it poses the possibility of a preventive dietary supplement, according to scientists involved in this study (see article

Other articles by Herbsprout include microbial treatments for Parkinson's, ; and Parkinson's disease may originate in the gut, .
#ai #bacteria #datascience #diet #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #healthtech #herbalmedicine #herbs #mentalhealth #plantnutrition #probiotics #psychobiotics

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Shinrinyoku- an evidence based connection to "forest bathing"

Shinrinyoku- an evidence base...
Japan's Shinrinyoku

Japanese health care evolving from the Shinto and Buddhist traditions seek to integrate our connection to nature with our physical and spiritual health, and recommends regular “Shinrinyoku”, or “bathing in the forest”. Likewise, Ayurveda seeks to integrate the mind, body and spirit to promote health and wellness.

Today, we can identify two evidence based connections between Shinrinyoku and healthy living. Scientists have found that common evergreen trees such as pine, cedar, oak, and cypress trees emit phytoncides, which are volatile substances that protect against pathogens and insects. Phytoncides possess insecticidal, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties.

The second evidence based property of certain evergreen trees are they contain and emit alpha-pinenes or α-Pinene. A-pinene is an organic compound of the terpene class found in the oils of many species of coniferous trees, such as pine and hinoki (Japanese cypress). This chemical is anti-inflammatory, possibly antimicrobial, and an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor (known to be a memory aid).

The National Institute of Health and the Public Library of Science reported that phytoncides reduced the level of noradrenaline, a stress hormone, in mice. It also cited studies of humans who practiced "forest bathing" showed an increase in the number of natural killer cells and levels of intracellular anticancer proteins when exposed to phytoncides. Hinoki cypress, Chamaecyparis obtusa, is the representative tree of forest bathing, and is popular activity in East Asia. (See ). The same effect can just as easily be experienced as your weekend walk in the woods or hike in the mountains.

For further evidence of the therapeutic chemical emitted by certain evergreen trees such as hinoki, read our previous blog by Herbsprout contributing writer, Cindy Postma at

Modern science- based approaches have evolved to include healthy living. It also supports the belief that the fundamentals of even meditation are factors influencing our overall health, such as slowing down, being present, mindful, and conscious in our breathing. In these holistic traditions, the fundamentals of Hinduism and Buddhism are a worthy consideration. For individuals not seeking a replacement to their western traditions, eastern traditions can simply complement your traditionally held beliefs.
#Shinrinyoku #bacteria #diet #easternmedicine #essentialoil #forestbathing #gutmicrobiome #health #healthinnovation #herbalmedicine #herbs #japanesemedicine #plantnutrition #spices

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