Are all Natural or Herbal Food Safe?

Don’t judge a book by its cover!
This old English idiom is applicable to all walks of life from choosing your friend, your spouse and of course, health supplements too! The labeling of natural and herbal may SOUND safe but it is important to understand more before consuming them. The price to pay for not educating ourselves can be hefty (e.g. liver damage)!


Examples of Natural but Unsafe Herbs..


Ephedra (i.e. Ma-Huang)

  • Has active ingredient ephedrine which is popular in slimming pills
  • Can cause heart attacks, blood toxicity and bleeding strokes
  • The FDA collected over 150 ephedra-linked death reports
  • The American Academy of Neurology says that just 32mg/day can increase stroke risk but ephedra pill labels suggest taking up to 100mg/day

High Caffeine Herbs (e.g. guarana seeds, cola nut, camellia leaf, coffee bean)

  • Combination with ephedra can cause stroke, seizures, hypertension and sudden death
  • Popular weight-loss agents as caffeine reportedly boosts metabolism
  • Make body lose large amount of water when combined with diuretic hearts in slimming supplements which mislead people into thinking their caffeine-rich pill is burning fat
  • Too much caffeine can cause anxiety, insomnia, irregular heartbeat, addictiveness and even death in those with high blood pressure
  • Depending on species, some guarana seeds contain up to 10% caffeine by weight which far exceeds that of the average raw coffee 2.2% caffeine content by weight

Guar Gum

  • A weight-loss ingredient banned in 1990s
  • A complex sugar that sweeps when wet, creating feeling of fullness when eaten
  • Side effects include frightening instances of stomach, throat and intestinal blockage

White Willow Bark

  • Contains salicylic acid, the active ingredient in aspirin
  • The FDA says that this herb is sometimes used in child medications that are labeled aspirin-free
  • Can induce internal bleeding in aspirin-sensitive adults
  • The National Council Against Health Fraud caution the use for childhood chicken pox or influenza can lead to Reye’s syndrome, a disease affecting all organs of the body but most lethally the liver and the brain

Moral of the story.. Practise Independent Thinking!
This can only be achieved if we keep on learning. It is never too old to learn! The science of Nutritional Immunology (NI) has got so much to offer. Alternatively, do the initial background check and choose a manufacturer who has accumulated years of experience in researching into wholesome superfoods as well as demonstrating consistent food safety track records. Do safeguard your health which is your most valuable asset!

Do feel free to reach out to me if you would like to know more about NI. Share if you care for your friends 🙂

YingYing • +65 9199 6825 •

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