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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 30, 2003

STATEMENT FROM GOV. ROD R. BLAGOJEVICH

“I commend President Bush for recognizing the serious health risks posed by ephedra, and for instituting a nationwide ban on the dangerous herbal supplement.  His decisive action on this issue will save countless lives and spare many others from the devastating medical problems that can result from ephedra use.
 
“In May, Illinois became the first state to completely ban the sale of products containing ephedra. Our action drew wide support from medical experts, professional athletes and Illinois families who have lost loved-ones to the herbal supplement. 
 
“More than 100 deaths and 18,000 medical problems have been linked to ephedra use. The supplement’s makers purport that the herb enhances physical activity and weight loss, but in reality it offers essentially no benefits and can cause serious harm or even death.  The bottom line is, there is no safe amount of ephedra, so there is no justification for continuing to allow products that contain ephedra to be sold to American consumers.”


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