HEALTH

Smoking cessation most effective when smokers have person-to-person support, data shows

BY Michael Johnsen

CHICAGO Recent meta-analysis research published Monday in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that smoking cessation programs offered to hospitalized smokers is most effective if supportive contacts remain in contact with that smoker for more than one month following discharge.

Smoking counseling that began during hospitalization and included supportive contacts for more than 1 month after discharge increased smoking cessation rates at 6 to 12 months, versus no benefit with those interventions with less post-discharge contact. Adding nicotine replacement therapy to counseling improved results.

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Advertising council makes recommendations on Constellation Wines’ dietary claims

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus on Tuesday determined that Constellation Wines U.S./PolyPhenolics provided reasonable support for certain performance claims made for the company’s dietary supplement MegaNatural-BP, but recommended the company discontinue certain claims to avoid consumer confusion.

NAD was concerned that that the claim “Provide relief with half the cost, half the dose,” did not clearly identify the object of the comparison and suggested that consumers with high blood pressure could replace prescribed medication with a supplement.

NAD recommended that the advertiser discontinue the claim, “Provide relief with half the cost, half the dose and half the time” but noted that the advertiser can continue to discuss the differences between MegaNatural-BP and the competing Antigen Converting Enzyme (ACE) inhibitors which take 4-6 weeks of regular supplementation to work.

NAD recommended that to avoid the potential for any consumer confusion, and consistent with the findings of the studies on which it relies, the advertiser clearly and conspicuously disclose that MegaNatural-BP could be used as a part of a lifestyle management program for people with prehypertension and metabolic syndrome, and clearly state that consumers should “Consult your doctor before taking MegaNatural-BP.” 

The company, in its advertiser’s statement, said it “understands NAD’s decision as written and appreciates your thorough and well-explained rationale.  Polyphenolics agrees to modify its advertising as recommended.”

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Congressman ask for review of Bayer aspirin heart health claims

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON Two Michigan democrats have singled out Bayer’s marketing of its Aspirin with Heart Advantage, a combination product that includes a dietary supplement, that appears to go against a Food and Drug Administration’s request not to advertise such products, said House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Chairman John Dingell, according to a Reuters report published Tuesday.

Dingell, along with Rep. Bart Stupak, fired off two letters suggesting that the supplement/analgesic combination product might need FDA approval—one to Bayer and the other to Health and Human Services secretary Michael Leavitt. HHS oversees the FDA.

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