SURVEY BY NATIONAL CENTER FOR COMPLEMENTARY AND INTEGRATIVE HEALTH (NCCIH) PART OF THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, USA
Although Ayurvedic medicine and its components have been described in many scholarly articles, only a small number of clinical trials using these approaches have been published in Western medical journals. About 240,000 American adults use Ayurvedic medicine. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) part of the National Institutes of Health has carried out surveys.
Few well-designed clinical trials and systematic research reviews suggest that Ayurvedic approaches are effective.
- Results from a 2013 clinical trial compared two Ayurvedic formulations of plant extracts against the natural product glucosamine sulfate and the drug celecoxib in 440 people with knee osteoarthritis. All four products provided similar reductions in pain and improvements in function.
- A preliminary and small NCCIH-funded 2011 pilot study with 43 people found that conventional and Ayurvedic treatments for rheumatoid arthritis were similarly effective. The conventional drug tested was methotrexate and the Ayurvedic treatment included 40 herbal compounds.
- Outcomes from a small short-term clinical trial with 89 men and women suggested that a formulation of five Ayurvedic herbs may help people with type 2 diabetes. However, other researchers said inadequate study designs haven’t allowed researchers to develop firm conclusions about Ayurveda for diabetes.
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