Frequently Asked Questions
Shen means “spirit” or “supreme being” in Chinese.
Dr. Shen’s was founded by Joel Harvey Schreck L.Ac in 1994. Joel is often referred to as Dr. Shen, although that is not his real name.
The Chinese invented the pill. Chinese doctors were prescribing pills in the twelfth century, much as we do today. Ancient formulas were often prepared as pills made from milled herbs bound with water, honey, ginger juice, or other substances. Dosage, by weight, of pills is generally 1/5th the amount that would be used in a decoction.
Depending on the size of the pills, that can amount to three to twenty pills at a time, taken two or three times a day. That may seem like a lot of pills to take if you’re used to taking pharmaceuticals. But it’s really only a few grams of medicine.
Besides, you can’t compare this to pharmaceuticals. Our body perceives and responds to herbal medicine as it does to food, not as it does to a hyper-concentrated chemical. Herbs are like vegetables, very powerful vegetables.
Dr. Shen’s has a standard dosage which is 3 tablets every three to four hours. This varies depending on weight, severity of condition, and sensitivity. If you have a question regarding how much to take, please ask your practitioner, or call us at 800-475-1394.
If you live in California, you may have noticed that the labels on some of our products have a PROP 65 Warning Label.
Any warning can be concerning, so we totally understand concerns around this label. Rest assured, our products are safe. Used for generations, they’ve never caused any harm whatsoever. The issue is trace amounts of lead, which occur everywhere on Earth in plants and water.
The issue is not confined to Chinese herbs. Every plant medicine contains, and likely always has contained, trace amounts of lead.
Many nations have established standards for lead in herbal medicines. Japan allows 20 parts per million (ppm) for total metals in herbal medicines. The World Health Organization allows 10 ppm for lead. The Australian TGA allows 5 ppm for lead in a product. Germany allows 5 ppm as well. The US Pharmacopoeia has no standards for herbs, but allows 3 ppm in drugs.
Our products test at an average of 1-3 ppm, which is considered safe and incidental by all international standards for medicine. However, California’s Proposition 65 requires warning at only 1/2 ppm in food, and in California, herbal medicines are considered food rather than medicine.
We test every batch of our medicines to eliminate any possible contamination. However, herbs grow in the earth and are naturally rich in minerals. Even ours may exceed the amount allowed for food or water. Prop 65 allows the sale of these products, however it requires a warning.
The typical American diet is said to contain 15 – 25 micrograms or more of lead daily, mainly originating in fruits and vegetables. Other environmental exposures can result in up to 200 micrograms consumed daily. A maximum dose of herbal medicine can add 3-15 micrograms of lead per day.
Though these figures may sound high, they are actually quite low. Despite alarms in the media, the lead in our bodies today is actually the lowest in recorded history. Thirty years ago, when lead was in gasoline and most paint, we absorbed five to ten times as much lead as we do today.
Be assured that Dr. Shen products meet all internationally accepted standards for herbal medicines. They remain, as always, the purist and most potent herbal medicines you can buy.
External Articles Regarding Proposition 65: