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There is a reason alternative medicine has an adjective in front of it - it can't survive double-blind clinical trials the way medicine has.

But at least it isn't harmful. In most cases. However, aconite, a class of plant that is also known as wolfsbane or devil's helmet and is in a poisonous genus of the buttercup family, recently led to facial tingling and numbness within minutes of ingesting, followed by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain 30 minutes later. 

The herbal preparation by a Chinese herbal medication practitioner in Melbourne for back pain resulted in life-threatening heart changes, lead to new calls to educated the public and warn practitioners who prescribe "complementary" treatments instead of medication.


A chronic problem in wine making is when yeast that should be busily converting grape sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide prematurely shuts down, leaving the remaining sugar to instead be consumed by bacteria that can spoil the wine.


Though the rich get richer and the stock market is booming, which has led to claims by the administration that things are fine, the American public hasn't been this pessimistic about the future since Jimmy Carter was president. Pessimism has instead leaped 40% higher since 2009, when the Great Recession was in full swing.


A diet of junk food not only makes rats fat, but also reduces their appetite for novel foods, a preference that normally drives them to seek a balanced diet, according to a study in Frontiers in Psychology which helps to explain how excessive consumption of junk food can change behavior, weaken self-control and lead to overeating and obesity.


In the 1970s, Florida environmentalists who had invented the notion that landfills were going to overrun America came up with the idea of making coral reefs out of tires. A few short decades later, the clean-up costs when those all came loose were 100X the supposed savings and tires have fallen out of favor as clever quick fixes since then.

Leave it to people in Tennessee to find a new use for old tires.  Oak Ridge National Laboratory
researchers have found a way to use them to make better lithium-ion batteries.


Oxidized lipids are known to play a key role in inflaming blood vessels and hardening arteries, which causes diseases like atherosclerosis. A new study at UCLA demonstrates that they may also contribute to pulmonary hypertension, a serious lung disease that narrows the small blood vessels in the lungs.

Using a rodent model, the researchers showed that a peptide mimicking part of the main protein in high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the so-called "good" cholesterol, may help reduce the production of oxidized lipids in pulmonary hypertension. They also found that reducing the amount of oxidized lipids improved the rodents' heart and lung function.