A history of adulterated botanical drugs

(Via New Hope 360.) The Fall 2011 issue of the American Botanical Council's HerbalGram features "A Brief History of Adulteration of Herbs, Spices, and Botanical Drugs," an article covering intentional and unintentional alterations going back to ancient Greece. In ancient Athens, such mischief included adding flavorings to wine to make it taste like an older vintage. Since then cinnamon oil has been watered down with wine, black pepper mixed with linseed, and green tea blackened with sheep's dung. The most famous episode was probably the Prohibition-era Jamaica Ginger scandal, in which antifreeze and plasticizers were added to a ginger extract, which paralyzed up to 50,000 people who drank it for the alcohol. Many "Ginger Jake" victims were left with a distinctive gait called the jake walk. Early detection methods included…
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A list of supplements that don’t work very well in the versions sold in the US

nutritional therapy
Updated October 22, 2020. Originally posted November 19, 2011. Over the years I've learned that some of the nutrient supplements on the shelves in the US don't work very well, either because a significant part of the population can't process them, or because the version used is poorly absorbed by the body, or because they are so cheaply formulated that the filler would make you sick before you could get enough of the active ingredient to resolve your deficiency. Here's everything I know so far. Needless to say, the better versions are more expensive and harder to find. Folic acid Processing this synthetic vitamin into its active form requires methyl groups and those of us who are methyl-challenged (low methylators) need to use the methylfolate version. Some sources say that…
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