FDA Warns of Tainted or Fake Dietary Supplements
In its ongoing push against products claiming they're dietary supplements, the FDA has found almost 300 fake products -- most for weight loss, sexual enhancement or body building.In December, the agency sent a warning letter to dietary supplement manufacturers to stop making claims about their products in the wake of a growing number of consumer complaints about supplements that include unlisted ingredients -- some that could have potentially life-threatening side effects.
"These tainted products can cause serious adverse effects, including strokes, organ failure, and death," FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, MD, said in a statement at the time. "The manufacturers selling these tainted products are operating outside the law."
In its consumer information update, the FDA said you should be wary if:
- A product claims to be an alternative to a FDA-approved drug or have effects similar to a prescription drug.
- A product claims to be an alternative to anabolic steroids.
- The product is marketed through emails or if the marketing is in another language.
- A sexual enhancement product promises rapid or long-lasting effects.
- The label warns you could test positive in drug tests.