HEALTH

CRN praises FDA recall of tainted weight loss supplements

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Council for Responsible Nutrition on Friday applauded the Food and Drug Administration’s expansion of its recall of 69 tainted products advertised as weight loss dietary supplements.

“It is particularly concerning that some of these weight loss products illegally contain pharmaceutical drugs, which can be especially dangerous and put consumers at risk,” stated Steve Mister, CRN president and chief executive officer. “It is unfortunate that some of these products have been marketed as dietary supplements.

Under the law, what is in the dietary supplement bottle should be listed on the label and products that break the law have no business being on store shelves,” he said. “Regardless of how it is marketed, if a weight loss product contains a drug ingredient, it is a drug under federal law.”

Mister noted that the majority of companies in the dietary supplement industry abide by the law and work hard to provide the more than 150 million Americans who take vitamins and other dietary supplements with safe, high quality and beneficial products. “We encourage consumers to be savvy when it comes to their supplements—always buy from reputable companies that you know and trust,” Mister said.

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NPA criticizes remarks tying dietary supplements to tainted products

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Natural Products Association on Thursday released a statement criticizing the erroneous link between legitimate dietary supplements and tainted products. “Increased scrutiny by professional sports leagues on steroid usage, which the Natural Products Association commends, has unfortunately also led to increased and unsubstantiated allegations that a ‘tainted’ or mislabeled dietary supplement is to blame when an athlete tests positive for a banned substance,” said David Seckman, NPA executive director and CEO.

“As the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 mandates, all ingredients must be listed on product labels and product claims must be substantiated. If this is not the case, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration—along with the Federal Trade Commission—have the authority under DSHEA to act promptly,” he said.

Seckman also noted that not all substances banned by professional sports organizations as performance enhancers are either bad or illegal. “Performance enhancers [that] are not necessarily dangerous or illegal … include caffeine, commonly used over-the-counter cold remedies and prescription medications,” he said. “Athletes have the right and responsibility to avoid their use. However, the consuming public who benefits from legitimate medications or dietary supplements – as well as a trip to the local coffee house – should not be denied their use if an athlete is unwilling or unable to follow the rules established by their sport.”

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FDA hosts women’s health meeting Feb. 9

BY Michael Johnsen

ROCKVILLE, Md. The Food and Drug Administration will be hosting a meeting on women’s health in Washington on Feb.9, according to a document slated to be published in the Federal Register on Monday.

The three-hour meeting is intended for directors of national organizations interested in discussing women’s health research and educational out reach.

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