Herbfacts
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News: December 2018

EATING ORGANIC COULD REDUCE RISK OF SOME CANCERS

Organic food eaters most often have a 25% lower risk of several cancers than those who eat the least. So says a study of almost 70,000 French men and women reported in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine[i]. It’s not known exactly why, but, as well as avoiding pesticides, organic food eaters tend to eat more healthily as well as being more active than non-organic eaters. Watch this space.

LAVENDER FOUND TO REDUCE ANXIETY

Lavender flowers

Well known for its power to relax and soothe, and to help induce sleep, lavender continues to attract the attention of scientists. A recent Japanese lab study[ii] reveals that, when inhaled, linalool, a sweet-smelling compound found in lavender, acts on the brain to reduce anxiety to a similar extent to prescription drugs such as Valium.

It’s early days but the researchers hope that the results of this study could pave the way to the medical use of linalool as an alternative treatment for anxiety and stress or to calm patients before surgery.

A VEGAN DIET COULD HELP MANAGE TYPE 2 DIABETES

Vegetables laid out on wooden background to spell the word vegan

Hardly a day goes by without veganism hitting the headlines and now a recent study from the University of London [iii]suggests that a vegan diet may be a way of managing type 2 diabetes.

After studying 11 clinical trials carried out between 1999 and 2017 to track the physical and emotional impact of a vegan diet on people with diabetes, the researchers noticed that quality of life improved in those on a vegan diet.

The vegan participants had improved mental health symptoms and tended to lose more weight over the course of the studies, too.

Although the study was small it is thought that a long-term vegan diet may help ‘slow progressive nerve damage’ associated with diabetes, and help diabetics manage their blood sugar levels and reduce their blood fats.

Diabetes expert Dr Katarina Kos, of Exeter University, said: “The success was probably down to the fact a vegan diet tends to be low in calories and low in fat.”

GET BEARDED AND SUPPORT BOWEL CANCER RESEARCH

Man in Christmas hat and sunglassed with beard decorated with Christmas decorations

Decembeard is back again. Grow a beard for December and help raise money to fund the fight against bowel cancer. Already bearded? Just dye, ditch or decorate it to join the campaign. The message is simple: Get growing now and raise money for bowel cancer research. To find out more visit their website

 

[i]:https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/2707948

[ii] Source: Front. Behav. Neurosci., 23 October 2018 | https://doi.org/10.3389/fnbeh.2018.00241

[iii] Toumpanakis A, Turnbull T, Alba-Barba I. Effectiveness of plant-based diets in promoting well-being in the management of type 2 diabetes: a systematic revieBMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care. Published online October 30 2018

 

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