Health care professionals have long used piper for cough, but it’s also been used in many other illnesses, including a number of autoimmune diseases, a new study shows.
A new study from the University of California, Berkeley, shows that piper is effective at relieving many other conditions, including arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome and multiple sclerosis, all of which are caused by inflammation in the joints.
While piper does not cure all these diseases, the researchers say it may help prevent some of the common side effects and improve symptoms for people with some of these diseases.
“The data in this study shows that while piper may be used for cough and cough-like symptoms, it may also be useful for a range of conditions, especially those that are associated with inflammation in joints,” said senior author and UBC Sauder School of Medicine researcher Dr. William W. Miller.
Miller and his colleagues were looking for a way to test whether piper can be used to treat arthritis and chronic fatigue in a healthy population.
In the study, the team enrolled 20 healthy individuals who were taking piper and used it to treat the joint pain and fatigue.
They then compared their responses to piper versus placebo in terms of pain relief, as well as a range.
When it came to pain relief and the number of days that the subjects felt relief, the pterostilbene group was able to reduce joint inflammation by 30 percent, and the pheromones group saw relief of inflammation by 45 percent, the study found.
It is unclear what specific molecules are responsible for the analgesic effect.
But Miller suspects that pheromonal activity may be one.
Other studies have shown that pterolone, an opiate-like compound, is responsible for a variety of other side effects, including depression, sleep disturbance and nausea.
Miller said piper could also play a role in the ability of the body to fight infections.
Miller’s findings were published in the journal PLOS ONE.
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