CRN announces second year of ‘Life … supplemented’ educational campaign
WASHINGTON The Council for Responsible Nutrition today announced that its “Life … supplemented” nutritional supplement awareness campaign is continuing for the second year, will be supported by physicians as spokespeople, and that recent study results showed that more healthcare professionals recommend patients take supplements—and take supplements themselves.
Results of the 2008 Healthcare Professionals Impact Study, an overview of attitudes on supplement use by cardiologists, dermatologists and orthopedics, revealed that professionals in these healthcare fields recommend and also use dietary supplements for wellness and enhanced health. The study also said that practitioners in these fields believe supplement use has gone more mainstream than five years ago.
Of orthopedic specialists, 73 percent said that they take supplements and 91 percent said that they recommend supplements to their patients. Of the pool of cardiologists, 57 percent said that they regularly take supplements and 72 percent reported that they recommend them to their patients. And, 79 percent of the dermatologists surveyed said they take supplements, and 66 percent said that they recommend them.
The survey pool included 300 specialists from each field with a margin of error of 3.3 percent.
CRN has also named three healthcare professionals who will serve as spokespeople for the “Life … supplemented” campaign. Jeannette Graf, a dermatologist based in New York, cardiothoracic surgeon William Cooper of Emory University and UCLA orthopedic specialist Nick Shamie will speak on behalf of the benefits of supplements.
“We learned from the 2007 HCP Impact Study that physicians and nurses are taking supplements as part of a proactive wellness regimen that also includes healthy diet and regular exercise,” Judy Blatman, senior vice president of communications at CRN said. “With the second year of this study, we were able to dive into specific specialties and find similar trends, further demonstrating the important role for doctors in incorporating dietary supplements as an integral part of wellness.”
The 2008 study followed a similar 2007 HCP Impact study conducted by CRN which concluded about 72 percent of physicians and 89 percent of nurses use dietary supplements themselves. Of the physicians, 79 percent and 82 percent of the nurses involved in that survey said they recommend dietary supplements to patients.
FDA issues injunction against Wilderness Family Naturals for efficacy claims
ROCKVILLE, Md. The Food and Drug Administration has issued a permanent injunction against a distributor of dietary supplements, salves and conventional foods, alleging that it made false claims of its products’ ability to treat, cure, mitigate and prevent diseases, the FDA said Tuesday.
The agency alleges that Silver Bay, Minn.-based Wilderness Family Naturals claimed benefits for its products against diseases such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, hyperthyroidism, HIV and AIDS.
The company has signed a consent decree prohibiting it from manufacturing or distributing any products with unapproved claims of benefits against disease. The company has agreed to remove disease claims from its products? labels, labeling and Web sites, as well as references to other Web sites that contain such claims.
“The FDA is acting to product the American public from companies making unapproved disease treatment claims for their products,” FDA acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs Michael Chappell said in a statement. “Claims made by Wilderness Family might distract consumers from seeking products that have been shown to be safe and effective in treating disease.”
Research says 500 deaths of children annually tied to cough-cold medicines
ELK GROVE, Ill. Research published Thursday in the American Academy of Pediatrics official journal Pediatrics determined that there is an estimated 500 pediatric deaths a year associated with children’s cold and cough medicine.
“Up until this new research, officials assumed that there were only 3 or 4 deaths a year from these medications,” said Jeffery Chamberlain, co-founder of Honey Don’t Cough, who performed the mathematical extrapolation. “Deaths have been drastically underreported because when a child gets sick and dies, doctors assume that the death was solely related to the illness itself. Typically, no one thinks to check for toxic medications that could have contributed to the death.”
“We have suggested that our state Medicaid program initiate a public education campaign regarding the risks associated with use of OTC cough and cold medicines since poor, publicly insured families may be more likely to give these products to their infants,” said Mary Ellen Rimsza, lead author of the article “Unexpected Infant Deaths Associated With the Use of Cough and Cold Medications,” and chair of the Arizona Child Fatality Review Program.