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BMJ on herbals

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Editorial appearing in the July 9 British Medical Journal challenges natural products' reliance on "folklore" to support medicinal claims. The article refers to the EU Herbal Medicinal Products Directive, which will be implemented by October and requires herbal products to have a demonstrated 30-year history of safe use prior to sale. The editorial also states "without the evidence of efficacy, it is hard to judge the safety of herbal medicines, not least because the risk of an adverse effect that might be acceptable for an effective treatment will be unacceptable for an ineffective one." The UK Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency said the editorial "fairly" points out that strength of evidence of herbal products' efficacy "varies widely." However, MHRA maintained the "higher standards introduced by the new regulatory regime represent an important advance for the consumer"...
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