Volume 88 Issue 29 | pp. 38-39
Issue Date: July 19, 2010

Supplementing Knowledge

Researchers seek to understand safety of botanical dietary supplements
Department: Science & Technology, Government & Policy
Keywords: toxicity, dietary supplements, botanicals

Many people try to manage their health by taking plant-derived dietary supplements. But despite their ubiquity, these pills and potions are not well understood by the scientific community.

Toxicity is an especially murky area. Manufacturers must be on the watch for potential toxicity from multiple sources. Products can be contaminated with something toxic, such as a heavy metal, pesticide, herbicide, or microbe. Or, in a case of mistaken identity, a toxic plant species might be . . .

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