Researchers have recently become interested in the use of phosphadylcholine as a supportive treatment in severe ulcerative colitis. There may be an insufficient quantity of phosphatidylcholine in the mucus lining the colon in patients with ulcerative colitis. Taking phosphatidylcholine may correct this deficiency. A small double-blind, placebo controlled study of 60 patients whose ulcerative colitis was poorly responsive to corticosteroids were randomized to receive either phosphadylcholine (2 g per day) or placebo for 12 weeks.
Half of the participants taking phosphadylcholine showed a significant improvement in symptoms versus only 10% taking placebo. Moreover, 80% taking phosphadylcholine were able to completely discontinue their corticosteroids without disease flare-up compared to 10% taking placebo.
A double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 24 people with ulcerative colitis examined the effects of
wheat grass juice
taken at a dose of 100 cc daily for one month.
According to various measures of disease severity, participants given wheat grass juice improved to a greater extent than those given placebo. However, wheat grass juice is rather bitter, and it seems unlikely that the study could truly be blind, meaning that participants and doctors didn’t know who was getting the wheat grass juice and who was getting the placebo. Indeed, when researchers polled the participants, a majority of those given wheat grass juice correctly identified it. For this reason, as well as its small size, the results of the study are not convincing.
(from the spice turmeric) has shown some promise for helping to maintain remission. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 89 people with quiescent ulcerative colitis were given either placebo or curcumin (one gram twice daily) along with standard treatment.
Over the 6-month treatment period, relapse rate was significantly lower in the treatment group as compared to the placebo group.
(glycosaminoglycans), and an an extract of soy called Bowman-Birk inhibitor concentrate (BBI)
have been suggested for the treatment of ulcerative colitis, but the evidence that they work remains preliminary at best.
Researchers have also studied the herb
as a potential treatment for ulcerative colitis. In one trial, 120 people with ulcerative colitis were randomized to andrographis extract (400 mg, 3 times daily) or the medication mesalazine (1,500 mg, 3 times daily).
After 8 weeks of treatment, the two groups had similar results.
In a randomized trial of 224 patients with ulcerative colitis, patients were randomized to 1,200 mg or 1,800 mg of andrographis a day, divided into three doses, compared to placebo. Significantly more patients taking the higher dose showed a clinical response, but not a clinical remission, compared to patients taking the placebo. Patients on the lower dose of andrographis showed no significant benefit.
There are also weak indications that
to foods, such as milk, may play a role in ulcerative colitis.
One study failed to find real
more effective than fake acupuncture for this condition.