For a growing number of Americans, the time for alternative medicine has come . Miracle Cures
, written by CNN's former senior medical correspondent, highlights several of the most exciting natural remedies currently under investigation. There's St. John's Wort (also called hypericum), which has proven effective in combating depression; gingko biloba, a circulation-enhancer that retards Alzheimer's and other age-related memory problems; grapefruit fiber, which combats cholesterol; and many others. All of the compounds and alternative treatments listed in Miracle Cures
are regularly practiced in Europe, Asia, or both. So why aren't they used in the United States? Carper points out that since "nature owns the patent," there's little financial incentive for American pharmaceutical companies to investigate natural compounds. Secondly, most American doctors are simply unaware of the testing that has been done on these techniques; most research has been done by non-English speaking physicians and written up in foreign journals. Responsibly toting up the risks and benefits of each, Carper is hoping for a sensible integration of natural remedies into American medicine.
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