Researchers Reveal How Herbal Therapy Reduces Viral Load In HIV/AIDS Patients
Some researchers in Nigeria have demonstrated how an herbal therapy could reduce the viral loads and increase CD4 counts of Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) patients.
In a recent study carried out by researchers from the Department of Plant Science and Technology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Jos, and OLA Hospital Laboratory, Jos, Plateau State, the herbal treatments were effective in managing opportunistic infections and other complications in persons living with HIV/AIDS.
The researchers, according to Nigerian Guardian, which include: M. K. Elujoba, C. I. C. Ogbonna, F. Chinyere, F. O. Elujoba, E. Ayanda and E. Newton, concluded:
“The present study showed that combined herbal therapy could bring the reduction in the viral load and increase CD4 counts of HIV/AIDS patients. It similarly expresses good antioxidant activities in vitro when compared to the commercial reference Butylated hydroxyl toluene (BHT).
“Herbal treatment should be encouraged. It should act as the supplementary treatment for patients and should not replace the conventional Anti Retroviral Therapy (ART) therapy. Increases in adherence rate should also be advocated for a better response as non adherence to the treatment regime may present a decrease in CD4 count and an increase in viral load.”
The study titled “The Effects of a Mixture of Extracts from Indigenous Herbs on HIV/AIDS Patients Employing CD4+ T Lymphocyte Counts and Viral Load Reductions as Assessment Indices” was published in the May 2018 edition of the journal International STD Research & Reviews.
Read details as published by the news platform below:
The herbal preparation, according to the researchers, include combination of fresh Ananas comosus (pineapple) juice (500 millilitres/ml), Citrullus lanatus (watermelon) juice (2.2 litres/L) and Citrus medica (lemon) juice (200 ml) were extracted using a blender (Model BL330, Kenwood, Hong Kong, China suspended in coconut oil (250 ml).
Aqueous extracts of Zobo (Hibiscus sabdariffa) was prepared by extracting 100 gramme in 500 ml of distilled water from which 200ml was mixed in the previous preparation.
Garlic (7000mg), Moringa oligofera (250g) and Artemisia annua leaves (250 g) were mixed with the whole preparation and then suspended in 1L of Tualing Honey. The herbal combination was dispensed in sterile plastic containers and refrigerated.
The volunteers were asked to take two tablespoons thrice daily (approximately 10 ml).
Garlic has been found to be effective against the opportunistic infections of HIV/AIDS patients. Such opportunistic diseases include herpes, tuberculosis and sexually transmitted infections.
Moringa leaf has been identified as a valuable nutritional component, which enhances the immune system.
Moringa leaves have also been reported to possess powerful anti-oxidants that can help prevent or delay some complications arising from AIDS.
Artemisia annua improves the general condition of the patients living with HIV/AIDS, improving their appetite, weight gain, and healing of opportunistic infections associated with AIDS.
The study was edited by Jose Eduardo Serrao, Professor, Department of General Biology, Federal University of Viçosa, Brazil and reviewed by: Ashok Pandey, Child Sight Foundation Global, Bangladesh; Hendra Van Zyl, South Africa; Bora Ekinci, Turkey; and Johnstone J. Kumwenda, Malawi.
Until now, HIV infection is treated in some part of Africa using different herbal combinations.