Integrative medicine in gastrointestinal disease: Evaluating the evidence

Gerard E. Mullin, Octavia Pickett-Blakely, John O. Clarke

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Current Western therapies for many gastrointestinal diseases are suboptimal and potentially toxic. The majority of patients with digestive diseases are turning to complementary and alternative medicine for symptom relief and improved quality of life, due to dissatisfaction with conventional medical therapies. There is emerging evidence that many of these complementary and alternative medicine modalities are highly effective in modulating the immune system, disrupting the proinflammatory cascade and restoring digestive health while improving patients' quality of life. We present evidence to support the potential utility of complementary and alternative medicine modalities for irritable bowel syndrome and inflammatory bowel disease. For each condition, we detail the proposed mechanisms of action and explore the current data for the prevention and/or treatment of disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-280
Number of pages20
JournalExpert Review of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2008


  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • Essential fatty acids
  • Immunomodulating
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Integrative medicine
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Polyphenols
  • Probiotics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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