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Guide to Herbal Supplements

Learn the Truth About these Top Sellers


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What a bunch of mis-stated facts! First of all; this concept of going to a medical doctor to tell them about the herbs you are taking makes about as much sense as going to a plumber for an electrical problem. Most medical doctors have no training in herbal medicines! Herbal medicine has been misunderstood in this country because people try to make it fit into the drug model this country runs on. Why do you think most of the people in your poll use herbs?--Because they work. You do not see thousands of deaths due to herbal medicine but you do see more than 250,000 deaths due to drugs annually in this country. I have been studying and using herbal medicine for over 30 years and don't take any medications--i'm 68 and healthy. Report
I have successfully used cranberry to treat existing UTIs; so have many people I know so I'm not sure why there "is no evidence" saying it works. The tone of the article seems slanted and trying to steer people away from herbals.

Of course, as with any medicine, you still need to do your research with herbals and know what it is you are taking. I would have preferred advice on where to go to get information & how to contact a professional ("talk to your family doctor about herbal suplements" is a joke, most of them haven't got a clue & will only push the pharms.) Report
I respectfully disagree about her being a voice of reason. Conventional medicine tells me I am to 'trust' them (pharmaceutical company's, doctors, actual meds themselves) because they are regulated by our 'government'. Ha. That is the main reason to NOT trust them in my humble opinion. =)

I go to the conventional doctor and get prescribed some fancy and expensive medication to help clear the allergy levels from my blood. It is $2100 per shot and it is recommended to take for 6-12 months. With insurance, I may pay $150 per shot. I look up this drug and guess what? It is made from CHINESE HAMSTER OVARY. Xolair. Look it up. Anyhow, I have to keep going to this doctor monthly for the shot and follow up. $$$$ in her pocket, the pharmaceutical pocket so on and so forth....

I go to doctor of Naturopathic Medicine and she teaches me what I can safely take, how to take it, and when to take it. She writes it out for me. In the future, when I have this problem, I know what to get, how to take it and get better. Money in MY pocket.

I go to a specialist of Naturopathic Medicine like many other people do to get professional advice on herbs. I believe the herbal products are safe.

Of course, trying to take a herb one knows nothing about can be unsafe. It is best to pay a doc of Naturopathic Medicine to get one on the right track. Report
Thanks for the voice of reason! Too many people put their rational minds on hold when they hear the snake oil salesmen's miraculous claims. Thanks for giving the real information and appropriate cautions about these herbal substances. Report
Becky Hand( the author) is also the woman that said that Aspartame is safe.
I take herbal supplements and homeopathic medicines for everything and if I would have continued taking prescription medication created in a laboratory by " science" I would have been dead today( I was diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis and given 3 years to live and did not get better until I refused to take the prescriptions because I was so miserable from the side effects I just wanted to die) There was a time when science was for the greater good, now it is for profit and every science project has its own agenda. I feel safer taking supplements ( herbs, vitamins, alternative meds) than I do taking anything approved by the FDA and here is another thing folks.........................most other countries DO NOT allow Monsanto or chemicals like RoundUp or GMO seed into their country so eating herbs and supplements created in other countries is safe too. As of 2006 54.6 MILLION hectares of land in the United States is GMO crop. In 2006 less than .1 million hectare of Mexico, less than 2 million hectare of Argentina , less than 3 million hectare of China. So go ahead and eat those fruits and vegi's from other countries because the FDA is a great big joke. Report
I have used Black Cohosh to control hot flashes and night sweats with great success. I'm very pleased to find an alternative to hormonally-based medications. Another great thing is I can use it for a few months and when I've stopped taking it I've gone for many months with no symptoms. It also relieves symptoms quickly when I start it again when the flashes have come back. Report
I like your point SummerBreeze. As Im reading the comments on this page I hear opposition from the unknown and well researched of experience...bottom line is if your unsure of it,you will stay away from something you dont know and if you want a none pharmaceutical laden product you will stay with the pharmacy world...for those who know so much about your pharmaceutical products ...did you know in many products they make there is fluoride....and in toothpaste...and in mouthwash...and your child takes in in school to prevent cavities!! hhhmmm...did you also know its it Rat poison and an ingredient in Nuclear attacks your nervous system and slowly shuts it down! I have researched that one! Report
I have used herbal supplements for over 20 yrs with the way my health is . I swear by them and work with a naturopath . I know for a fact if I hadn't found another way to function with my family doctor knowing of course I would be confined to my bed by now . I agree with the person saying that comment about the pharmacy . Report
I really didn't like this article. Sounds like she is working for the pharmaceutical companies, using her terms "may interact with", etc. Of course one must be aware of what one puts in their body. Report
My mom swore by Goldenseal Root when the kids were growing up. It tastes like a hedge bush smells, but SO AMAZING at curing strep bacteria. We used it all our lives and it worked ffor us. And my mom also takes the cranberry pills mentioned, and they work for curing a UTI as well as preventing them. Report
The supplements can also be contaminated with other drugs. I see notifications of that at least once a week. Be careful, do your homework, and don't assume what's on the label is all you get. These people are in business to make money as well. Report
One thing i didn't see in the article was cinnamon for blood sugar. The research has been done in large groups over many types and ages. Cinnamon helps to lower blood sugar. It is not a replacement for treatment but can be a very effective boost. Report
I have used herbal supplements for most of my life (almost 60 yrs old) and very extensively the last 20+ years with no issues or problems. I raised my family with the same surety of these methods that I was raised with. I have studied natural medicine extensively, both here in the U,S, and abroad. I was raised in close proximity to the Lower Sioux Reseervation in Minnesota, which is where I learned many of the ways of their people.

There is a place for both Natural Medicine and Conventional Medicine and we must not be quick to discredit what we may not have knowledge of or understand. The European and Middle Eastern and Asian nations have studied these products extensively and most are regulated by their regulatory and guidance means. Report
SJW can cause blood clots, and if your allergic to ragweed, echinacia is not for you.
The main issue I have with herbal supplements is that they are not regulated or tested. There have been numerous studies about herbal supplements like Red Yeast Rice (people take it to reduce cholesterol), that have shown different levels of the cholesteral drug lovastatin. So there is a risk of being overmedicated, or on the other hand, not getting what you're paying for.

People/websites selling these unproven natural supplements can make any claims they want, because they are not tested or regulated by the FDA. Until these supplements are proven to contain what they state, and proven to do what they claim to do, I'll stay away from them.

Bottom line - get your information about herbal supplements from reputable sources, not just the websites that sell the products. The websites selling the products won't tell you about drug interactions, or adverse side effects.

Remember - just because a product is labeled "natural" doesn't mean it's safe, or better than a prescription medicine. Report

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