Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science






dietary, supplements, compounds, herbal, supplement


It is estimated that $3.87 billion is spent annually on herbal products, botanicals, nutraceuticals and dietary supplements (Newton et al., 2000). Dietary supplements are synthetic or extracted vitamins, minerals, fatty and amino acids, or herbs intended to supplement the lack of these various things in an individual’s diet. Currently dietary supplements do not require FDA approval to be sold in the United States. Can all dietary supplements be safe for consumption with little governmental oversight and the ultimate safety of the product being determined by the manufacturers? We hypothesized that Shi Wei Bai Du Tang, a Chinese herbal supplement would contain compounds whose effects would potentially be harmful to consumers who were not aware of the contents. Four extracts were prepared with the herbal supplement and gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry was performed to identify compounds in the extracts. This analysis revealed many compounds, but two in particular were of interest; osthole and falcarinol. Osthole and falcarinol can potentially have adverse effects in individuals with specific health issues such as patients taking blood thinners. It is our assertion that stricter government regulations are necessary in the production, distribution and labeling of dietary supplements for the sake and safety of the consumer.