December 3, 2008

Watch out for heavy metals in all Asian herbs — not just China's

You probably already know about contaminated Chinese health products. Now you have to worry about Indian medicines as well.

An article in the Journal of the American Medical Association has bad news about Ayurvedic medicines. It says about 20% of these medicines sold on the Internet contain contaminates. They contain undesirable levels of lead, mercury, and/or arsenic.

Ayurvedic medicine is an ancient Indian art of healing. It centers on herbs. So it's really sad to see that these herbs on the market are contaminated.

One particular problem is the practice of rasa shastra. This ancient practice deliberately combines herbs with metals and gems. Rasa shastra experts claim that these medicines are safe and therapeutic — but only if the manufacturer properly prepares them. However, rasa shastra products were the most heavily contaminated.

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Seventy-five percent of the Internet sites selling the herbs claimed Good Manufacturing Practices. Obviously, they aren't really compliant with such practices. If they were, there would not be toxic metals found in excess of the standard for acceptable daily intake of the poisons.

This is a sad commentary for herbal practices. But I have to tell you the bad along with the good in alternative medicine. I suggest you add Ayurvedic Indian herbs to Chinese products to the "be careful" list. With most herbal products containing Asian herbs, it's almost impossible to avoid them completely. And the ones that aren't contaminated can work wonders for your health. So make sure you buy from companies that guarantee no contaminates, such as Advanced Bionutritionals. They buy only from trusted manufacturers who buy from trusted suppliers. You can find information about their purity by visiting this webpage:

Yours for better health and medical freedom,

Ref: JAMA, 8/27/08.

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