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GNC Herbal PlusŪ Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex)

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100 Vegetarian Capsules

Item #187902 See Product Details

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Description
Menopause Support
Whole Herb – 500 mg

This product is ship restricted to California.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Supplement Facts

As a dietary supplement, take one capsule daily.

Serving Size 1 Capsule
Servings Per Container 100
Amount Per Serving % DV
Chasteberry Fruit Powder (Vitex Agnus-Castus) 500.00 mg 0%
** Daily Value (DV) not established

Other Ingredients: Microcrystalline Cellulose, Vegetable Cellulose Capsule

No Sugar, No Starch, No Artificial Colors, No Artificial Flavors, No Wheat, No Gluten, No Corn, No Soy, No Dairy, Yeast Free.

Storage Instructions: Store in a cool, dry place.

Warning: Consult your physician prior to using this product if you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition. Discontinue use two weeks prior to surgery.

KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN

SEE MANUFACTURER'S LABEL FOR ADDITIONAL PRODUCT INFORMATION AND SUPPLEMENT FACTS PANEL.

Distributed by: General Nutrition Corporation Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Health Notes

Are Herbal Supplements Safe?

Are Herbal Supplements Safe?
A Healthnotes Newswire Opinion
Are Herbal Supplements Safe?: Main Image
Though concerns should be taken seriously, just being aware of them allows consumers to easily protect themselves
The recent investigation of some herbal supplement manufacturers and retailers by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has raised industry issues that are important for supplement users to know, even though it does not indicate an immediate cause for widespread alarm. First, in violation of existing regulations, the authors of the report discovered ten instances in which herbal supplement sellers deceptively marketed their products to elderly people. Second, 40 popular single-ingredient herbal supplements were tested and many found to contain trace amounts of heavy metals and pesticide residue, though none at levels that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers dangerous to public health. Though both concerns should be taken seriously, just being aware of them allows consumers to easily protect themselves.

What unethical marketing practices were discovered?

Posing as elderly people calling in to 22 online and store-front retailers, the GAO report describes 10 instances of questionable marketing practices, including store associates advising people to take dietary supplements in place of their prescription medications. The GAO also identified multiple instances of suspect labeling practices, including claims that a dietary supplement can cure or prevent diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's disease, or high cholesterol.

It is unquestionably unethical to overpromise supplement effects (especially to people managing serious diseases) or to encourage anyone to discontinue using medication or adding a new supplement to a treatment regimen without consulting their healthcare provider. Fortunately, the report does not demonstrate a pattern that gives reason to believe that the transgressions are widespread. It describes the sample of retailers investigated as "non-representative," which presumably means that they did not look objectively across the thousands of supplement retailers nationwide and select a group that somehow represents the industry. The names of the retailers were not included in the report, nor was it clear whether the instances of illegal marketing were discovered by a single retailer or across the group.

Since 1994, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act has expressly forbidden these types of marketing practices, and it seems reasonable to expect that responsible supplement manufacturers observe the laws.

What impurities were found in the tested supplements?

Though none of the contaminant levels exceeded those thought to cause acute toxicity, the GAO found that 93% of the 40 supplements tested contained at least one contaminant and that 18 of them contained at least one pesticide residue. All of the contaminated supplements contained lead and others contained the heavy metals, mercury, arsenic, or cadmium. While the Environmental Protection Agency and FDA did not express concern over the immediate negative health consequences of taking any of the supplements that were tested, since conscientious consumers are increasingly interested in organic foods and knowing where their foods come from, extending that awareness to include the source and purity of supplements is the next logical step. In a statement to the New York Times, Steve Mister, spokesperson for the Council for Responsible Nutrition, pointed out that it was "not surprising that herbal supplements contained trace amounts of heavy metals, because these are routinely found in soil and plants."

Buyer be...smart

Alan R. Gaby, MD, chief science editor at Aisle7 believes that, "while it is important to identify the purest sources of vitamins, minerals, herbs, and other natural substances, the majority of the evidence indicates that the benefits of taking recommended amounts of dietary supplements for proven benefits outweighs the risks."

The concerns raised by the GAO report certainly warrant further investigation, but before action is taken, it is preferable that regulatory agencies put the findings into context and support the efforts of reputable manufacturers and retailers, many of which go out of their way to provide meaningful, science-based information and high-quality products. Until more is known, there are plenty of things that you can do to choose your supplements safely:

  • Research before you buy. Avoid "miracle cures" by learning what you should realistically expect from supplements. Look for unbiased, science-based resources (online and in-store, such as those provided by Aisle7) that can help you make informed decisions on whether supplements are right for you and what is safe to take with your medications.
  • Do not trust anyone that recommends you take a supplement in place of your medication. ("Take red yeast rice instead of your cholesterol medication.")
  • Read product labels carefully and rely on credible third-party information to help you sales staff to interpret the message. "This product helps lower blood pressure" does not mean the same thing as "This product supports heart and vascular health."
  • Ask retailers for documentation of supplement claims. For example, an abstract from peer-reviewed journal can help lend support to the "suggested uses" of the supplement. Look out for studies funded by the supplement's manufacturer.
  • Consider the source. Check labels and websites if you are interested in finding the purest supplements. Many companies use organically produced ingredients in their supplements. Look for labels stating that the herbs are "certified organically grown" to ensure that no pesticides have been used in the manufacturing of the supplement.
  • Ask a professional. Make an appointment to speak with someone trained in the proper use of dietary supplements and knowledgeable about drug-herb-nutrient interactions, such as a licensed naturopathic doctor, a holistic medical doctor, or a certified nutritionist.

"A closer look into the findings of the GAO reveal a chance for enhancing consumer awareness and empowerment through informed decision making," says Gaby. "This is the time to bring to light the reams of studies supporting the use of traditional remedies for common ailments. With enhanced access to decision-making tools and properly trained medical professionals, people will be able to safely utilize alternatives or adjuncts to over-the-counter and prescription drugs. In the end, access to truthful scientific information regarding dietary supplements is more helpful to the public than basing policy on questionable claims made by a handful overzealous or unscrupulous supplement manufacturers."

(GAO Testimony Before the Special Committee on Aging, US Senate; Herbal Dietary Supplements, Examples of Deceptive or Questionable Marketing Practices and Potentially Dangerous Advice; http://aging.senate.gov/minority/_files/hr221gk.pdf)

Kimberly Beauchamp, ND, earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Rhode Island and her Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA. She cofounded South County Naturopaths in Wakefield, RI, and now sees patients in East Greenwich and Wakefield. Inspired by her passion for healthful eating and her own young daughters, Dr. Beauchamp is currently writing a book about optimizing children's health through better nutrition.
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Ratings and Reviews

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATESGNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex)
 
4.5

(based on 6 reviews)

83%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good value (5)
  • Easy to use (4)
  • Effective (4)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Daily use (4)
    • Women (3)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Budget shopper (5)

    Reviewed by 6 customers

    Sort by

    Displaying reviews 1-6

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    (14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    AWESOME

    By 1drowz1

    from San Antonio, Tx

    About Me Budget Buyer

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Easy To Use
    • Effective
    • Good Value
    • Lightweight
    • Smells Great

    Cons

    • Big pills

    Best Uses

    • Daily Use
    • On-the-go
    • Women

    Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

    Well, let me start off by saying that the product has been absolutely wonderful! I have to admit that I was a bit skeptical when I was reading about it because my cycles had always been so wacked out since I started my period about 10 years ago that it got to the point where I stopped keeping track of the days or when I would have my period. Several doctors tried different things to help regulate my cycles, for example : birth control pills, the patch, nuva ring, implanon, & provera(which gives you a period after taking for 10 days). All of the different birth control pills worked sometimes but of course I would forget to take the pills sometimes which would delay my period and I wouldnt get it when I was suppose to, on top of that I was gaining unwanted weight & my emotions were all over the place. I was sick of nothing working for me because I would go months at a time without having a period. So once again, I wanted to try and fix my cycle but this time it was because I wanted to be able to ovulate and be able to become pregnant so I asked my ob/gyn and she put me on a new birth control, and as disappointed as I was, i decided to try it for the 6 months that she was recommending. I come to find out that the birth control wouldnt even help!!! I was so annoyed when I read about it so i decided to start looking into other products that would help and came across vitex. I was so excited to try it but was also skeptical as I had mentioned. But I figured, "hey, what's 1 more attempt at getting my cycle together. So I've been taking them for about 4 months now and at first it was 45 days in between one period to another, and im officially at 28 days now after those 4 months. I couldnt be happier! I mean, they're big pills to swallow (i take 2 a day) but other than that theres no after taste or anything. I'm so ecstatic to express my success with this product! I'm hoping that I get the news that I'm pregnant in the near future. I absolutely 100% would recommend this to girls suffering with PCOS!!!!

    • My Beauty Routine Takes:
    • 10 Minutes

    (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    gives you extreme hairloss

    By annheralal

    from trinidad

    About Me Brand Buyer

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Regulates Menstrual Cycle

    Cons

    • Extreme Hairloss

    Best Uses

    • Women

    Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

    Chasteberry from Gnc is excellent for regulating menstrual cycle especially in cases of PCOS. However a major side effect is hair loss. My hair shedding became out of controll. I must add that don quai is effective for regulating menstrual cycle aswell without the side effect of hair loss.

    • My Beauty Routine Takes:
    • 30 Minutes

    (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Very pleased with this product.

    By daniellemarie413

    from Milwaukee, WI

    About Me Budget Buyer

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Easy To Use
    • Effective
    • Good Value

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Daily Use

      Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

      I have PCOS and have non-existent periods. After about 6 weeks of taking Vitex, I got a period! I have taken metformin with no success. I have read many good reviews on Vitex, so I am eager to see the results within the next year. I recommend this product to anyone suffering from PCOS.

      (2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      good!

      By 94464681

      from Connie Chan, CA

      About Me Budget Buyer

      See all my reviews

      Pros

      • Good Value

      Cons

      • Complicated To Use

      Best Uses

      • Daily Use

      Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

      I bought it for my sister, and she likes it very much.

      • My Beauty Routine Takes:
      • 10 Minutes

      (25 of 25 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      this product is great it work so fast !!

      By goldabella15

      from Orlando, Florida

      About Me Budget Buyer

      See all my reviews

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Effective
      • Good Value
      • Great Product For The

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Daily Use
        • Pcos Symptoms Healed
        • Women

        Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

        I suffer from pcos and infertility and i tend to have long term heavy period flow with only 4 to 5 days of taking Vitex i stop bleeding. i am soooo satisfied with this product i have gone to doctors and drank different types of medicine and nothing ever work except for VITEX. I would most definitely recommend this product!!! Thanks

        • My Beauty Routine Takes:
        • 1+ Hour

        (138 of 138 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        GREAT GREAT GREAT

        By mrs.sanchez1205

        from Chicago IL

        About Me Budget Buyer

        See all my reviews

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Effective
        • Good Value
        • Lightweight
        • Smells Great

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about HERBAL PLUS CONCENTRATES GNC Herbal Plus® Whole Herb Chasteberry (Vitex):

            Ok, so I'm 26 and have always had an irregular period. I'd get my period every other month or sometimes I wouldn't get it for a year and sometimes I'd get it for an entire year. It was unpredictable, which didn't help my husband and I with trying to have kids for 6yrs. We've tried dieting, exercising, Clomid, even going to fertility specialist (they said I was fine and fertile but couldn't tell me why we couldn't conceive and even ruled out PCOS and him having a low/no spermcount). So before we almost gave up, I heard about FertilityBlend from a friend, read all the great reviews and then came across the name Vitex. I did my research and was satisfied about the reviews/facts i was reading so i bought two bottles. I started taking them in August, noticed a difference in my periods (that were actually coming every month... and on time) and we found out on December 8th that we were pregnant! Conceived on November 17th and due date is on August 10th 2013. This worked when nothing else did. Amazing. It also helped me drop 40lbs with hardly any real effort. Vitex helped me with irregular periods, weight loss and infertility. Hopefully it can help you too. Good luck.

            • My Beauty Routine Takes:
            • 30 Minutes

            Displaying reviews 1-6

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