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New Clue to How Chinese Remedy Curbs Drinking

Posted 20 Jan 2011 by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 19 – Taking kudzu root extract to curb drinking leads to an increase in blood ethanol levels, which might lessen the desire for more alcohol, researchers report. In China, kudzu root extract has long been used to reduce, but not stop, alcohol consumption and dependence, but the mechanism of action has been a mystery. Examining this ancient remedy, scientists from Harvard Medical School and Brown University assigned 12 male and female volunteers to take kudzu or a placebo for nine days and then consume various quantities of alcohol so that the researchers could evaluate alcohol-related effects. Pre-treatment with kudzu had little to no effect on the participants' behavioral, physical or cognitive abilities, but it did cause an increase in heart rate, skin temperature and blood alcohol levels, the researchers found. Based on these findings, the scientists suggest that an ... Read more

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