Sunday, January 6, 2008

Chinese Herbal Supplements Not Safe

The FDA found that an erectile dysfunction herbal supplement had the active ingredient from the prescription medication Viagra. The herbal supplements is available under the names Super Shangai, Strong Testis, Shangai Ultra, Shangai Ultra X, Lady Shangai and Shangai Regular.

This unfortunately is not surprising. Due to loopholes in the current legislation, manufacturers of herbal and dietary supplements are not obligated to prove to FDA that their products are safe or effective. Manufacturers do not need to register with FDA that they will market a new product. Companies also must make sure that their marketing plans are not misleading. The laws that regulate herbal and dietary supplements is far different than those covering over-the-counter medications and prescription medications.

What does this mean to you? Be very careful when taking a herbal or dietary supplement as manufacturers are accountable to no one. Check with your doctor. Consider finding out more about potentially dangerous herbals at Consumer Reports, the Natural Standard database, and at Medline Plus.

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