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Safety and Efficacy Issues

With the passing Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994, the production of herbal remedies increased.  However they do not require approval by the FDA.  Safety and efficacy is not guaranteed.  Problems include:

1.  Varying amounts of  herbal products.

2.  Additive effects of an active drug, that produces adverse effects.

3.  Contamination of herb with toxic pathogens and/or chemicals.

4.  Accidental substitution of a herb with a  toxic species.

5.  Labeling - does  not include proper dosing guidelines or warnings. They must provide a disclaimer stating the FDA has not reviewed the herb and it is not intended to be used as a drug.                       

        Only 7 herbs are approved by the FDA
        36 are considered by the German Commission E to be effective

Recommendations for Safe Use