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The herbalist's new clothes?

A new study has identified product substitution and contamination in the herbal supplement industry on a massive scale. As the New York Times reports, one-third of the US herbal supplements tested by researchers had no trace of the advertised herb in the product, and many products were entirely composed of fillers such as rice, or contained dangerous contaminants and allergens. Only two of the 12 companies tested exclusively sold products that did what they said on the tin. Pro-supplement organisation the American Botanical Council has questioned the findings, due in part to what it says are flaws in the DNA technology used to identify herbal ingredients.
posted by dontjumplarry on Nov 3, 2013 - 74 comments

Calcium supplements, not so good.

Calcium supplements linked to significantly increased heart attack risk.
posted by storybored on May 26, 2012 - 30 comments

Would you like that with some cancer on the side?

Is your breakfast giving you cancer? "Chances are, you started your day with a generous helping of folic acid. For more than a decade, the government has required enriched grains — most notably white flour and white rice — to be fortified with folic acid, the synthetic form of the B vitamin folate. Many food manufacturers take it further, giving breakfast cereals, nutrition bars, and beverages a folic acid boost, too. Yet, historic reviews have linked too much folic acid to an increased cancer rate. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword on Mar 29, 2010 - 62 comments

Quantifying research.

Is Vitamin C worth taking or not? Does Echinacea kill colds? Am I missing out not drinking litres of Goji juice, wheatgrass extract and flaxseed oil every day? A generative data-visualisation of all the scientific evidence for popular health supplements by David McCandless and Andy Perkins. (Still Image) (data) [via] [more inside]
posted by Orange Pamplemousse on Mar 22, 2010 - 78 comments

Because Brawndo's got electrolytes.

Sports drinks and sodas are adding antioxidant vitamins to transcend their caloric nature and appear "healthy". Antioxidants defend against reactive oxygen species, which are purported to be causative agents in aging and cancer. However, a recent study has shown that supplementation with large amounts of antioxidant vitamins negates many of the beneficial effects of exercise.
posted by benzenedream on Jun 9, 2009 - 12 comments

I've got some ocean front property in Arizona, from my front porch you can see the sea...

The Coral Calcium scam. Coral Calcium products are on fire right now, with infomercials and brochures claiming that the miracle supplements can cure everything from fatigue to cancer. Of course there is no scientific evidence supporting any of these claims and one of the two men featured in the infomercials is a convicted felon named Kevin Trudeau. New FTC actions are ongoing and The Mayo Clinic has just sent out a letter to patients warning that the broad range of benefits claimed by those marketing some Coral Calcium products are simply too good to be true and that if the calcium indeed comes form the Okinawa area as claimed, it could be contaminated with lead.
posted by bargle on Jun 11, 2003 - 15 comments

Ginkgo supplements don’t help...Um...................um......

Ginkgo supplements don’t help...Um...................um...... A new study suggests ginkgo supplements do nothing to quickly improve memory in healthy people, a finding that goes against years of well-publicized claims that helped turn the supplements into a multimillion-dollar industry.
posted by DailyBread on Aug 20, 2002 - 25 comments

In case other forms of augmentation isn't a viable option, now women can order Bloussant, "an all-natural herbal tablet, which, when taken daily will increase ... bust size by up to two cup sizes." The site also has the commercial for the product in Windows Media and QuickTime formats.
posted by tamim on Jan 25, 2001 - 12 comments

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