"Selected Vegetables" and "Sun's Soup" are names given to several different mixtures of vegetables and herbs that have been studied as treatments for cancer and other medical conditions, including acquired immunodeficiency syndrome.[1,2,3,4] The original formulation contained shiitake mushroom (Lentinus edodes [Berk.] Singer), mung bean (Phaseolus radiatus L.), Hedyotis diffusa Willd. (also known by the Chinese herbal name Bai Hua She She Cao), and barbat skullcap (Scutellaria barbata D. Don, also known by the Chinese herbal name Ban Zhi Lian).
A second formulation, specifically named "Selected Vegetables" ("SV"), was tested in a phase I/II clinical trial that involved patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (refer to the Human/Clinical Studies section of this summary for more information). SV, which is a freeze-dried vegetable and herb product, is marketed in the United States as a dietary supplement under the names "Freeze-dried SV" or "DSV."
Mistletoe is a semiparasitic plant that grows on several types of common trees such as apple, oak, pine, and elm. Mistletoe extract has been used since ancient times to treat many ailments (see Question 1).
Mistletoe is one of the most widely studied complementary and alternative medicine therapies in people with cancer. In certain European countries, preparations made from European mistletoe are among the most prescribed drugs for patients with cancer (see Question 1).
A third formulation, called "Frozen SV" or "FSV," has also been studied clinically in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (refer to the Human/Clinical Studies section of this summary for more information). FSV, like SV/DSV, is marketed in the United States as a dietary supplement.
In the United States, dietary supplements are regulated as foods, not drugs. Therefore, premarket evaluation and approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are not required unless specific disease prevention or treatment claims are made. The FDA can, however, remove from the market dietary supplements that it deems unsafe. It should be noted that no formulation of Selected Vegetables/Sun's Soup has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of cancer or any other medical condition.
Because dietary supplements are not formally reviewed for manufacturing consistency, there may be considerable variation from lot to lot, and there is no guarantee that ingredients identified on product labels are present in the specified amounts or present at all.
SV/DSV and FSV are reported to contain soybean (Glycine max [L.] Merr.), shiitake mushroom, mung bean, red date (Ziziphus jujuba Miller), scallion (Allium bakeri Regel), garlic (Allium sativum L.), leek (Allium fistulosum L.), lentil (Lens culinaris Medic.), Hawthorn fruit (Crataegus monogyna Jacquin and/or Crataegus oxyacantha L.), onion (Allium cepa L.), ginseng (Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer), Angelica root (Angelica sinensis), licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra L.), dandelion root (Taraxacum officinale Weber), senega root (Polygala senega L.), ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe), olive (Olea europaea L.), sesame seed (Sesamum indicum L.), and parsley (Petroselinum crispum [P. Miller] Nyman ex A.W. Hill).[2,4]