HEALTH

Study: Resveratrol alone not enough to prolong life

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN DIMAS, Calif. According to a recent study, consumers hoping to benefit from the red wine supplement resveratrol should take an array of antioxidants with resveratrol for optimum results—a mega-dose of resveratrol administered to mice by itself failed to prolong life, the study concluded.

“While resveratrol, an antioxidant molecule concentrated in red wine, is touted for its health properties, it is not the sole molecule responsible for longevity,” stated Bill Sardi, spokesperson for Longevinex, a leading brand of resveratrol dietary supplement, in a statement released Saturday.

“The total array of red wine molecules found in the best red wine, about 60 milligrams per 5-ounce glass, or 180-300 milligrams in 3 to 5 glasses, is the suggested healthy dosage range,” Sardi said.

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Reality Coalition applauds FDA alert on weight loss product safety

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK The Reality Coalition, a group of experts and organizations around overweight and obesity, on Tuesday applauded the Food and Drug Administration’s efforts to recall and warn consumers about dietary supplements that claim to provide weight loss and contain undeclared, active pharmaceutical ingredients.

“Consumers should avoid dietary weight loss products that pose serious health risks,” said Reality Coalition co-chair George Blackburn. “To the best of my knowledge, identifying 25 tainted weight loss products is the largest action by the FDA.”

“We have always argued that weight loss supplements are not effective and unregulated, and now that these products have been shown to contain undeclared ingredients [that] may endanger health, this action by the FDA is of great urgency,” added Reality’s other co-chair MRC Greenwood.

The announcement follows FDA action on Monday—the agency issued an alert to consumers not to purchase or consume more than 25 different products marketed for weight loss because they contain undeclared, active pharmaceutical ingredients that may put consumers’ health at risk.

The Reality Coalition is a group of experts and organizations on obesity, nutrition, diabetes and healthcare policy who share the common goal of advancing an agenda for realistic approaches to weight loss to achieve improved public health.  

The Reality Initiative was launched in 2006 and is supported by an educational grant from GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, marketer of the over-the-counter weight loss drug alli (orlistat).  

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FluidEssentials re-launches natural sleep aid containing tryptophan

BY Michael Johnsen

ESCONDIDO, Calif. FluidEssentials is reintroducing the dietary supplement tryptophan, a natural sleep aid, into the U.S. market after the ingredient was initially banned in 1989, the company announced earlier this week.

In 1989, Japanese manufacturer Showa Denko exported tryptophan containing a harmful contaminant, FluidEssentials stated in a press release. The contaminant caused severe health problems, resulting in an FDA ban on tryptophan imports into the United States that was lifted May 2005.

So now FluidEssentials has launched TotalSleep, a single packet drink mix containing tryptophan.

According to the company, tryptophan is an essential amino acid that crosses the blood-brain barrier and naturally produces the calming hormone serotonin, which is responsible for healthy sleep, mood regulation, stress reduction and overall well-being. As night falls, tryptophan converts to serotonin, and serotonin to melatonin, resulting in sleep.

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