It's a no-brainer: Chronic mental and emotional stress, both of which can lead to depression, are eased by massage, so it's hardly a surprise that a number of studies conclude that massage therapy helps lift the blues.
Tai Chi For Insomnia
Are you a chronic tosser and turner? Can't sleep beyond the first chirps and tweets of the morning chorus? Try tai chi. The slow, meditative exercise regimen, originally developed as a martial art in China more than 2,500 years ago and practiced widely across Asia today, improves sleep quality in adults with moderate insomnia, CAM researchers say.
Bromelain For Swelling
The indigenous peoples of South America have used bromelain for centuries to dress and treat wounds. Now, research confirms that a medicinal compound (today taken in a pill) extracted from the stem and juice of the pineapple plant speeds healing of acute injuries such as cuts and bruises. It works by stopping the production of prostaglandins, hormonelike compounds that are by-products of inflammation, improving blood circulation at the injury site.
Acupuncture For Chronic Pain
A rash of recent research affirms this ancient therapy as a powerful head-to-toe pain reliever for a wide range of conditions. After as few as six sessions, people who suffered from regular tension headaches saw their symptoms disappear. Another new study found that sufferers of chronic lower-back pain who received acupuncture fared better than those receiving conventional care.
Glucosamine/Chondroitin For Joint Pain
It works, it doesn't work... Over the years, the data on glucosamine and chondroitin, natural compounds found in healthy cartilage and available in supplement form, and their ability to reduce joint pain has been conflicted at best.
Cocoa For Hypertension
Consumed daily for at least 2 weeks, cocoa (the darker the better) can reduce blood pressure among people with severe hypertension. Researchers say cocoa plant flavanols, called epicatechins, improve blood vessel function by helping artery walls relax
Green Tea For Rheumatoid Arthritis
Although the findings so far are limited to laboratory animals, intriguing new research points to green tea's ability to marshal the body's defenses against rheumatoid arthritis. When consumed daily over 3 weeks, green tea decreased the likelihood that rats injected with a human form of rheumatoid arthritis would get the disease.
Rhodiola For Anxiety
One reason we know that rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea) works is because it's been used worldwide for centuries, especially in Russia, Scandinavia, and Iceland (it grows in extreme northern climates), to quell anxiety and strengthen mental stamina. Another is that the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine recently gave it a big thumbs-up.
Hypnosis For Hot Flashes
Women who were hypnotized during five weekly sessions reduced both the frequency and severity of their hot flashes, according to research. Experts say hypnosis can literally change the way the brain receives signals from the body and from the outside world.