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Lawmaker Wants Ephedra Banned From Sale in Texas

Mar 7, 2003 | AP

A lawmaker from Houston plans to introduce a bill next week to ban the sale in Texas of dietary supplements containing ephedra, which has been linked to a number of deaths.

The Federal Food and Drug Administration has reports linking 100 deaths to ephedra, an herbal supplement used by people trying to lose weight.

A Florida medical examiner recently linked the Feb. 17 death of Baltimore Orioles pitcher Steve Bechler to ephedra. Bechler's official cause of death was heatstroke.

"It's resulted in a number of deaths," State Rep. Ron Wilson, D-Houston, told KRIV-TV in Houston Friday. "There's no controversy about that."

Similar legislation filed in 1996 failed.

Wilson said he thinks things will be different this time around.

"With these high-profile deaths that have occurred recently, I think the chances are real good to pass it," he said.

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