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Need More Traffic? Need More Sales? Go Here ===>

  1. 1. ==== ====Need More Traffic? Need More Sales? Go Here ==> ====It seems that every week theres a story about lead being found in one or another consumerproduct. The public is outraged, lawyers sue, and people grow worried. We are alarmed by thepresence of lead, but there are scant details about the nature of the problem. How harmful is lead?What is the evidence of its harm, and how can we avoid it?The public has a right to be warned of hazards, but are Chinese medicinal herbs, taken at correctdoses, really a hazard, or are the levels generally found in these products really safe andincidental? Many questions remain. There is evidence that the compounds found in herbs are lesslikely than free lead to bind with elements in our body. Does this make them less toxic? Are levelsin plants declining naturally over time? Does lead play a role in the effectiveness of herbalmedicines?Discourse on this subject is sorely needed. Unfortunately, information from both government andmedia sources, tend to provoke hysteria rather than educate. The most extreme examples ofmisuse are brought before the public, and everyone blames the medicine rather than misuse ofthe medicine, which may be the real story. As a result many people have become as mistrustful ofherbs as they are of pharmaceuticals. Fanning the flames of mistrust are California Proposition 65warnings appearing on many herbal medicines.In California, many people have become accustomed to these ubiquitous signs, labels, andbrochures warning of dangers lurking in their food and household products. Prop. 65 labels warnthat products contain various substances that cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductiveharm. In the case of herbal medicines, trace amounts is almost always the reason.But are these warnings really accurate? For example, labels warn that lead causes cancer, butwhat evidence supports such a conclusion. Apparently, the warning is based on evidence that highdoses have been shown to cause kidney cancer in laboratory animals bred to be susceptible tocancer. However, where is the evidence that such exposure causes cancer in humans? The onestudy of workers, exposed to high concentrations, showed no increase in the incidence of kidneycancer. Is this really evidence enough to make people fearful of herbal medicines?After surveying all the science available, Kyle Steenland, PhD and Paolo Boffetta, MD, in theirarticle Lead and Cancer in Humans: Where Are We Now (The American Journal of IndustrialMedicine, September 2000, vol. 38, issue 3, pages 295 - 299), conclude that the evidence thatlead causes cancer in humans - is weak.This doesnt mean that lead is safe for us. Far from it, lead is toxic to humans because it canreplace other metals in our body such as calcium, zinc, and iron, creating abnormal molecules inour enzymes which then fail to carry out normal body functions. Lead poisoning, also known as
  2. 2. painters colic or plumbism, can result in damage to the kidneys, heart, and nervous system. Thisis not new information. In ancient Rome, many ills were attributed to lead, which was used inmedicine, jewelry, wine, plumbing, and make-up. As early as 250 BC, Nicander of Coloform wroteabout lead-induced anemia. The Roman remedy for poisoning was documented to be mallow orwalnut juice with wine. Lead has been with us since the beginning of civilization.Lead is an element found in all the earths soils, rivers, lakes, and oceans. Lead is also found inthe air as a component of dust. Lead levels vary from ½ per million (ppm) to about 10 ppmin soils sampled far from industrial pollution. Lead exists in anything eaten, including all food,beverages, drugs, and supplements.There is no doubt that some environmental lead comes from industrial pollution. Over 300 milliontons of lead, mined in the twentieth century, has returned to our environment via leaded paint,fuels, "tin" cans, and plumbing. However its unfair to single out pollution alone for the presence oflead. Even without any human activity, it would still exist everywhere, as it does in the ancientigneous rocks formed from our planets natural volcanic activity. Our bodies always contain somelead, normally about .05 ppm. Healthy human bones contain 20-40 ppm of this element.The typical American diet is said to contain 15 - 25 micrograms or more of lead daily, mainlyoriginating in fruits and vegetables. Other exposures to the air, water, and industry can result in upto 200 millionths of a gram consumed daily. Typical doses of herbal medicine can add 3 to 15millionths of a gram per day.Though these figures might sound high, they are actually quite low. The amount of lead in ourbodies today is actually the lowest in recorded history. Thirty or more years ago, when lead was ingasoline and paint, we absorbed five to ten times as much as we do today, yet still there is noevidence, despite todays warnings, that our grandparents suffered any ailments whatsoeverbecause of their exposure to lead. If lead really did cause cancer, might not the decline in leadexposure result in a similar decline in cancer rates? On the contrary, while exposure has declinedprecipitously, most cancer rates have risen. Is it possible that fears of lead may have beeninflated, and that lead may not be the environmental bogey man we have presumed it to be.No one doubts that lead is bad for you at toxic levers, but at what levels? Herbal practitionersknow that lead can actually be good for you in certain instances. Lead has a long history ofcautious use as medicine. The Chinese herbal formula "Lead Special Pill" harnesses the "weight"of lead to settle the lungs in certain cases of asthma. The formula is prescribed at precise dosesfor periods of no longer than two weeks, and is not given to children or pregnant women. It hasbeen in use safely since the year 1040.The fact in medicine is not an apology for lead in the environment. Eight thousand years ofobservation has shown us that lead is mostly not good for you, so there is absolutely no reason tointroduce it into the environment, no excuse for putting lead paint on childrens toys. Laws havesolved this problem to a great degree, drastically reducing the lead in our surroundings.Removing lead from our plants, animals, earth and water is much more difficult. Eons ofvolcanoes and chimney smoke have dusted our planet with trace amounts. The latest detectiontechnology shows that both the oceans foam and the organic greens you purchased at the healthfood store, probably contain lead. A chocolate bar may contain more than ten doses of herbal
  3. 3. medicine.If this is so, why are there no warning labels on a chocolate bar? The curious reason is, of course,money. The chocolate industry had the millions of dollars needed to go to court and prove that allthe lead in chocolate occurs there naturally, so it cannot be considered a contaminant.Unfortunately, few of the small herb companies sued under proposition 65 had the resources toprove that the lead occurring in their products was also natural. Thats the only reason why youllfind lead warnings on herbal medicines, but not on candy.But is chocolate or herbs really a health problem deserving of warning? Theres a lot of evidencethat a lot of people have eaten a lot of chocolate and taken a lot of herbs without succumbing tomortal disease. Are California proposition 65 warning labels overly alarming? We know thatreduced lead pollution has already reduced the amount lead in our bodies. The same process isalready reducing the amount of lead in plants, and todays plant medicines probably have lesslead in them than they might have a generation ago.There is, and always has been, lead in every herbal medicine. This is why many governmentsthroughout the world have created appropriate standards for lead in herbal medicines. Forexample, Japan allows 20 parts per million (ppm) for total metals in herbal medicines. The WorldHealth Organization allows 10 ppm for lead. The Australian TGA allows 5 ppm for lead in aproduct. Germany allows 5 ppm as well. The US Pharmacopoeia has no standards for herbs, butallows 3 ppm in drugs.Most Chinese herbal products test at an average of 1-3 ppm, which is considered safe andincidental by all international standards for medicine. However, Californias Proposition 65 requireswarning at only 1/2 ppm in food, and in California, herbal medicines are considered food ratherthan drugs. Prop 65 allows the sale of these products, however it requires a warning.Though they might be technically correct, whether or not these warnings are actually educationalor even informative is another matter. Certainly warnings create fear among consumers; fears thatbecome associated not only with lead, but the product, the brand, and by association, all of herbalmedicine. We believe that this fear of herbs, based on misinformation, is bad for everyone exceptthe pharmaceutical industry, which by the way, is allowed six times as much lead in their products- without posting any lead warning.Fear also causes people to lose their perspective. The next time you find yourself worried abouttrace lead in herbal medicine, please remember the 200,000 people who actually die every yearfrom taking over-the-counter, non-prescription drugs.Article Source:
  4. 4. ==== ====Need More Traffic? Need More Sales? Go Here ==> ====