The FDA is warning consumers that some dietary supplements are illegally claiming that they can cure or treat diabetes. More alarming, some of these products contain harmful and unsafe ingredients. The agency issued warning letters to 15 companies that their products violate the law. These products were sold online and in retail stores.
You can see the company names, the product names, and images of the products at the FDA web site. In addition, pictures of the products are available. The products include Sugar Balancer by Health King Enterprises, Eradicator by Naturecast Products, Diabetes Daily Care by Nature’s Health Supply, Glucocil by Neuliven Health, and Zostrix Creams by Health Care Products, among others.
The FDA says that “consumers with diabetes risk serious health complications by choosing illegally sold diabetes products, which m ay also be dangerous. Bogus diabetes products are flooding the marketplace, especially the internet. Be cautious when you see bold product claims which make unrealistic promises. The FDA is taking action to protect consumers from these illegally sold diabetes products.
The products include are sold as “natural” treatments, but contain undeclared active pharmaceutical ingredients in unknown quantities that could complicate existing medical conditions. They also include supplements and ayurvedic products (Indian healing arts) with claims to treat, cure, or prevent diabetes. Other products contain unapproved drugs sold over the counter, which claim to relieve symptoms of peripheral neuropathy. In addition, prescription drugs for diabetes were sold by online pharmacies without a prescription. Examples of some of these unproven claims include: “Lower your blood sugar naturally,” “it can replace medicine in the treatment of diabetes”, and “for relief of diabetic food pain.”
Gary Coody, national health fraud coordinator for FDA said in a statement, “people with chronic or incurable diseases may feel desperate and become easy prey. Bogus products for diabetes are particularly troubling because there are effective options available to help manage this serious disease rather than exposing patients to unproven and risky products. Failure to follow well-established treatment plans can lead to, among other things, amputations, kidney disease, blindness and death.”
The FDA is not aware of any reports of injury of illness associated with these products. If you have tried any of these products and experienced a problem, contact the FDA’s MedWatch program by either downloading the form and faxing it to the FDA, or filling out the online form.