August 22, 2017

Consumer Reports Identifies 15 Dietary Supplements to Avoid

Consumer Reports has listed fifteen dietary supplement ingredients that consumers should avoid. These ingredients can cause organ damage, cardiac arrest, and cancer.  Whether or not a person can develop these conditions depends on their own health, the quantity ingested, and the amount of time they are exposed to the ingredient. These ingredients can also interact with prescription medications such as statins and blood thinning drugs. They can even interact with common over the counter medications such as aspirin. Consumer Reports' investigators found all fifteen of these ingredients in products available online or in stores such as Costco, BNC, Target, Vitamin Shoppe, Vitamin World, Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and Whole Foods. In 2013, a report from the Government Accountability … [Read more...]

Liver Damage Caused by Dietary Supplements Increases

Consumer Reports says a new study finds that some dietary supplements are causing liver damage. The study looked at cases of liver damage reported to the Drug Induced Liver Injury Network Program at the National Institutes of Health. About 700 cases of liver damage were reported during the study's time frame. And 130 of those cases were linked to dietary supplements. The study, published in the journal Heptology by Dr. Victor Navarro from the Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, states that the greatest risk of liver damage seems to be with bodybuilding and weight loss supplements.  Those products caused about half of the cases of liver damage that were linked to supplements. But other supplements that are sold for depression, sexual performance, and digestive issues can be … [Read more...]

Beware of Illegally Marketed Diabetes Treatments

The FDA is advising consumers with diabetes to avoid illegally marketed treatments. They say that if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. The phrases on products and dietary supplements to watch out for include "lowers your blood sugar naturally," "inexpensive therapy to fight and eliminate type II diabetes," "protects your eyes, kidneys, and blood vessels from damage," "replaces your diabetes medicine," "effective treatment to relieve all symptoms of diabetes," and "natural diabetes cure." If a product has these claims on the label, it's probably a scam. In addition to not meeting label claims, these products can contain harmful ingredients. They may be marketed as over the counter products when they require a prescription. And if people with diabetes rely on these … [Read more...]

FDA Issues Revised Draft Guidance to Improve Supplement Safety Notifications

The FDA issued a revised draft guidance on August 11, 2016 to improve dietary supplement companies' new dietary ingredient (NDI) premarket safety notifications to the government. These notifications help the FDA identify safety concerns before consumers buy these products. The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) requires a manufacturer or distributor to notify the FDA at least 75 days before marketing a supplement that contains a new dietary ingredient, unless the NDI is used in the food supply without chemical alteration. A new dietary ingredient is one that was not marketed in the U.S. before October 15, 1994. Supplements are considered adulterated if they contain an NDI not used in the food supply and if notification has not been submitted to the FDA 75 days … [Read more...]

FDA Says Some Imported Dietary Supplements Can Hurt You

The FDA says that if you buy imported products that are marked as "dietary supplements" and nonprescription drug products from flea markets, swap meets, online, or from ethnic or international stores, you could be harming your health. Health scammers often target people who like shopping at nontraditional outlets, especially those who have limited English proficiency. Cariny Nunez, M.P.H., a public health advisory in the Office of Minority Health at the FDA says, "these scammers know that ethnic groups who may not speak or read English well, or who hold certain cultural beliefs, can be easy targets." Some groups, such as Native Americans, Latinos, and Asians have a long tradition of using herbal or "natural" remedies. But "natural" does not mean "safe". Many "natural" products, such … [Read more...]

U.S. Marshals Seize Dietary Supplements Made with Kratom

The FDA has announced that U.S. Marshals, at the agency's request, seized almost 90,000 bottles of dietary supplements that contain kratom, a botanical substance that poses a risk to public health. This plant, whose Latin name is Mitragyna speciosa, grows in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea. It is toxic to multiple organ systems. Consumption of kratom can lead to respiratory depression, vomiting, nervousness, weight loss, and constipation. It has narcotic and stimulant effects and causes withdrawal symptoms, including hostility, aggression, excessive tearing, aching of muscles and bones and jerky limb movements. The FDA issued an import alert last year to let U.S. officials detain imported dietary supplements and ingredients that contain kratom without physical … [Read more...]

FDA Creates Office of Dietary Supplement Programs

The FDA announced yesterday that they have created the Office of Dietary Supplement Programs (ODSP), which elevates the program from its status as a division under the Office of Nutrition Labeling and Dietary Supplements. This change will "enhance the effectiveness of dietary supplement regulation by allowing ODSP to better compete for government resources and capabilities to regulate this rapidly expanding industry." The FDA does not regulate dietary supplements until there is a problem reported. The government takes action to remove supplements from the market that may be dangerous to consumers, and removes those that are falsely labeled or contain undeclared drugs. Other actions the government can take is enforcing good manufacturing practices regulation, especially when violating … [Read more...]

U.S. Senators Ask FDA To Investigate Supplement Manufacturers

U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) are calling on the FDA to investigate manufacturers of dietary supplements who list "acacia rigidula" as an ingredient in their products. That phrase masks the addition of BMPEA, a dangerous synthetic amphetamine. A study released earlier this month in Analytical Chemistry found the drug in 11 out of 21 of over-the-counter dietary supplements. The supplements that contain BMPEA, or β-methylphenylethylamine, increased from 42.9% in 2012 to 52.4% in 2014. The Senators wrote, "for too long, dietary supplement manufacturers have either failed to list BMPEA on product labels or have listed the stimulant as a 'natural botanical' which the Food and Drug Administration's own scientists have disproved. Other countries and entities … [Read more...]

BMPEA, Ingredient in Dietary Supplements, Never Studied

A new study published in Analytical Chemistry has revealed that an ingredient common in many dietary supplements, weight loss supplements, and workout supplements has never been studied for safety and efficacy in human beings. The ingredient is called β-methylphenylethylamine (BMPEA). It is chemically almost identical to amphetamines, so it is called an amphetamine isomer. Canadian health officials pulled supplements that contain BMPEA from store shelves in December 2014. But in the U.S., the FDA has said that the stimulant "does not identify a specific safety concern at this time." Many scientists disagree. In the United States, the multi-billion-dollar supplement industry is not well regulated. In fact, what is in the dietary supplement you buy doesn't always match the ingredient … [Read more...]

Buying Supplements On the Internet Can be Risky

Dietary supplements are very popular in this country. However, Center for Science in the Public Interest is warning consumers that buying these products over the internet can be risky. First, many "testimonials" from "customers" are fake. The same "person" is usually used repeatedly by different companies, writing the same thing about different products. Second, free samples are offered if you give the company your credit card number. But the time frame for canceling the charge is too short for you to decide if the product works for you. These companies will hype scientific studies that "prove" their product is effective as advertised. But these studies are usually worthless, not adhering to the usual rigor applied to credible nutritional and medical studies. For instance, one … [Read more...]

Report Your Food Poisoning Case
[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]
×
×

Home About Site Map Contact Us Sponsored by Pritzker Hageman, P.A., a Minneapolis, MN law firm that helps food poisoning victims nationally.