HerBeware

Potential Dangers of Unregulated Herbs in Dietary Supplements

Don’t be fooled by dietary supplements with labels reading ALL NATURAL. 
Just because it says “all natural,” it doesn’t mean it’s safe

Dietary supplements are not regulated by the FDA. Do not take them without consulting your physician

Stephanie Rose VanOrt

February 6, 1982 – February 19, 2002

Stephanie suffered a fatal heart attack because she took
a dietary supplement containing the herb, EPHEDRA.
Also known as Ma Huang, this ancient Chinese Herb
tested POSITIVE for amphetamines in her system
and it ended her life at age 20.

THE DEEP-POCKETED HERBAL MANUFACTUERS DIDN’T CARE.
IT HAS TAKEN 100’s (probably 1000s) OF DEATHS CAUSED BY
THIS STIMULANT BEFORE THE FDA FINALLY TOOK APPROPRIATE ACTION.

FDA Announces Plans to Prohibit
Sales of Dietary Supplements Containing Ephedra
Consumers Advised to Stop Using Ephedra Immediately

http://www.fda.gov/oc/initiatives/ephedra/december2003/

AND STILL, THE EPHEDRA INDUSTRY IS TRYING TO STOP THE BAN.
The Herb Industry Wants Ephedra Back on the Market

Read this Washington Post article

Don’t let Ephedra take another life.
Please check with your health care professional
before adding supplements to your diet!

KNOW THIS: PRIOR TO PUTTING THEM ON YOUR GROCERY STORE SHELVES, THE FDA HAS NO CONTROL OVER HERBS AND SUPPLEMENTS, WHICH MEANS MANUFACTURERS CAN MAKE AND LABEL THE PRODUCT WITH WHATEVER THEY CHOOSE.

SOME 75% OF PRODUCTS IN THE HERBAL MARKET DO NOT CONTAIN WHAT THE LABEL SAYS IT DOES.)

ACCORDING TO THE DIETARY SUPPLEMENT HEALTH & EDUCATION ACT OF 1994 (DSHEA) MANUFACTURERS OF DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO PROVIDE EVIDENCE OF EFFICACY OR SAFETY PRIOR TO MARKETING A PRODUCT.

ONCE PRODUCTS ARE ON THE MARKET, THE FDA MUST DEMONSTRATE THAT THEY ARE UNSAFE BEFORE THEY CAN TAKE ACTION TO BAN IT. THE MENTALITY IS, LET’S WAIT UNTIL (HIGH-PROFILE) PEOPLE DIE BEFORE WE TAKE ACTION.

HERBS NEED A NEW REGULATION CATEGORY. POTENCY VERIFICATION IS CRITICAL. THE FDA IS TOO SMALL AND TOO UNDERFUNDED TO PROPERLY REGULATE THE HERBS WE TAKE AS DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS.

THERE IS A NEED TO ESTABLISH INDUSTRY-WIDE STANDARDS TO HELP ENSURE THAT DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS ARE MANUFACTURED CONSISTENTLY AS TO IDENTITY, PURITY, QUALITY, STRENGTH AND COMPOSITION.

HERBEWARE PROMOTES THE RESPONSIBLE, SCIENTIFIC AND CONTROLLED USE OF DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS TO TREAT AND PREVENT DISEASE. WE DO NOT WANT TO BAN ALL DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS AND WE DO NOT BELIEVE ALL HERBS ARE DANGEROUS FOR ALL PEOPLE.

WE DO BELIEVE, HOWEVER, THAT ALL SUPPLEMENTS SHOULD HAVE THE SAME LEVEL OF QUALITY CONTROL AS THE CORRESPONDING PHARMACEUTICAL PRODUCTS AND ONLY TAKEN UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF A HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL.

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