Review Article | Volume : 1 Issue : 6, August 2011

Concerns regarding the safety and toxicity of medicinal plants - An overview

Philomena George   

Open Access   

Abstract

All over the world, especially in developing countries herbal drugs are playing an important role in health care programmes.This is because they are being cheap and locally available. There is a general belief amongst the consumers globally that herbal drugs are always safe because they are “natural". However evidences suggests otherwise. The mere fact that a product is "natural" may not signify that the product is safe. Although limited evidence suggests that adverse effects associated with the use of herbal drugs are less likely to occur than with conventional drugs, theydo occur though usually mild and only affecting a small number of people. Recent evidence suggests that some of the herbs considered to be safe over the last many decades have proven to be associated with health hazards. Herbal remedies can act either as agonists or antagonists that potentiate some drug therapies. Therefore , an understanding of conventional drugs is an essential prerequisite for effective herbal therapeutics.The advancement of technology has enabled the scientists to detect minute amounts of carcinogenic and toxic chemicals in these herbs and recognize or evaluate potentially hazardous effects of some of the herbs which had been used in traditional medicine since centuries.


Keyword:     Safety and Toxicity herbal medicines/ drugs side / hazardous effects Pharmaceuticals Botanicals Allergic Contamination & adulteration


Copyright:The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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