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Echinacea, cranberry efficacy questioned.

Striking a possible blow against some home remedies, recent studies suggested echinacea is not beneficial in treating the common cold and cranberry juice does not help stave off urinary tract infections.


In a study published Jan. 1 in Clinical Infectious Diseases, college-aged women who tested positive for having a urinary tract infection were assigned to drink eight ounces of cranberry juice or a placebo twice daily for either six months or until a recurrence of infection, whichever happened first. The cranberry juice drinkers had a urinary tract infection recurrence rate of almost 20 percent, compared to 14 percent of those who drank the placebo.

A second study, published Dec. 21 in Annals of Internal Medicine assigned patients with common colds to no pills, placebo pills, or echinacea pills. Of the about 700 patients studied, there was no statistically significant difference in the length of the cold between groups. The study was funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

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Title Annotation:HEALTH FINDINGS: The latest public health studies and research
Author:Currie, Donya
Publication:The Nation's Health
Article Type:Brief article
Date:Feb 1, 2011
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