Asthma/AllergyButterburDiabetes MellitusMilk Thistle

Herbals I’d like to see more research on in 2007

Milk thistle and butterbur

Here’s why.
Milk thistle

  • It’s true; gives milk thistle (Silybum marianum seed extract [silymarin]) just a “C” grade for its role in the treatment of diabetes. In other words, there is “unclear scientific evidence for this use.”
  • But a 2006 study summarized here reported a positive effect on A1c.

I think milk thistle deserves closer scrutiny.


  • Two studies published in 2006 and summarized here and here reported the effectiveness of butterbur to treat the runny nose, sneezing, congestion, and irritation in the nose, eyes, throat and ears associated with allergic rhinitis.
  • Another study reported positive effects in patients with atopic asthma patients when butterbur was combined with other treatments.

Additional well designed studies published in more influential journals would help spread the word about these promising herbals.

1/1/07 20:43 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.