Houston Community News >> Chinese Official Defends Herbal Medicine

12/11/2007 BEIJING --Chinese traditional medicines do not contain banned substances, a Beijing Olympics medical official said Tuesday. However, as a precaution they will not be used to treat the athletes during the games.

“We know there is no relationship with doping and Chinese traditional medicine,“ Dr. Dai Jianping told AP.

“The Chinese traditional herbal medicine has enjoyed a process of several thousand years. It is very healthy for the body.“
Dai is one of the top medical officials for next year’s Olympics and a deputy director with the Games Services department of the Beijing organizing committee.

He likened the traditional medicines to vitamins.

“We cannot regard vitamin C as a kind of doping,“ he said.
However, over the weekend Dai was quoted by the official state-run Xinhua news agency saying Chinese medicine would not be used to treat athletes during the Aug. 8-24 games.

“To avoid the doping problem, the clinic will not provide Chinese medicine,“ Dai said, after attending a medical forum. He said the decision not to use traditional remedies was made because the medicines had not been used in other Olympics.

“We hope you will not relate traditional Chinese medicine with doping,“ he added.

One of China’s most respected physicians, he said ingredients in Chinese herbal remedies were clearly labeled and the medicines underwent strict government analysis.

“If there were forbidden ingredients it would say on the label,“ he said.

China has been at the forefront of recent anti-doping efforts, not wanting a drug scandal to soil the Olympics. However, in the early ’90s Chinese distance runners coached by Ma Junren broke several world records, and credited their performances to traditional products.

Many were later found to be using banned western drugs.