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Hidden dangers of supplements

A team of specialists, including Emeritus Professor Duncan Burns, a forensically experienced analytical chemist from Queen’s University Belfast’s Institute for Global Food Security, Dr Michael Walker from the Government Chemist Programme at LGC and Professor Declan Naughton from Kingston University, has been examining the detection of illegal ingredients in herbal dietary supplements [4].

Using techniques, such as datamining, the review looked at research from right across the globe and questioned the purity of herbal food supplements. The research found that over-the-counter supplements – commonly advertised to treat obesity and erectile dysfunction problems – are labelled as fully herbal but often include potentially dangerous pharmaceutical ingredients, which are not listed on the label.

The survey raises serious questions about the safety of slimming supplements containing Sibutramine. Sibutramine was licensed as the medicine Reductil until 2010, when it was withdrawn across Europe and the US due to an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes associated with the use of the drug.

 

References

4. https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-02/qub-erh020617.php



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