The Reason Supplements Must Include This Disclaimer: "These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease."
You're in the pharmacy, the health-food shop, or the grocery store and you approach the aisles containing vitamin-minerals and various remedies. Have you ever thought, well, this stuff must be okay because they must be FDA approved?
Looking through all these shelves and products, you might be surprised that there are just five products that are scientifically proven according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards to prevent or treat a disease.
1. Folic Acid prevents certain birth defects when taken during pregnancy.
2. Vitamin D is known to aid in the absorption of calcium and therefore helps prevent osteoporosis.
3. Calcium prevents osteoporosis when taken at appropriate dosage with vitamin D throughout a lifetime.
4. Omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to enhance brain development and to lower triglyceride levels.
5. Niacin has been proven to increase "good" cholesterol.
That is why vitamins, minerals, herbs, and combinations of these products display the disclaimer in the headline of this blog on their packaging.
You might also notice that you pay a premium for formulas that are marked "natural" or "organic." But the fact is that all manufacturers must process chemicals so that they can be made into tablets, capsules, or gel caps. The body does not use the same chemical differently whether it is synthetic or natural, regardless of the source.
Purchasing supplements at a so-called health food store, (such as GNC, or the Vitamin Shoppe), is no guarantee of purity or potency. Vitamin-mineral formulas can be purchased with unwanted metals such as tin and antimony included as ingredients. Further, high prices and high stated potencies equal expensive urine, not better health.
Why doesn't the FDA judge the effectiveness of the supplements and remedies that are available over-the-counter? The law governing these products, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHE) allowed manufacturers to sell these products without the oversight of the FDA because Senator Orrin Hatch (R.-UT), the author of the bill, did not want to burden the growers of herbs and the purveyors of these products that headquarter in his home state.
Tomorrow: Do you, our kids, or your charges need to take vitamins?