Our daily lives now include the usage of dietary supplements. Every pharmacy in the country has shelves full of dietary supplements, and consumers spend billions of dollars annually on everything from fish oils to Vitamin C. But how are these products regulated in general? Who verifies the accuracy of the information on the label and the safety of the products? The solution might surprise you.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defers to supplement manufacturers to ensure that the products they are turning out live up to the health claims they are making.
In other words, it is the manufacturer’s duty to uphold the supplement’s claim that it gives you the daily recommended allowance of a certain vitamin and ensure that it is secure. The FDA directly states the following regarding the regulation of dietary supplements Protetox.
Dietary supplements are governed by a distinct set of rules by the FDA than “traditional” meals and pharmaceuticals (prescription and Over-the-Counter). A dietary supplement’s manufacturer is tasked with ensuring its safety prior to marketing under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA). After a dangerous dietary supplement product enters the market, FDA must take action against it. In most cases, producers do not need FDA registration or permission before creating or marketing dietary supplements. Manufacturers are responsible for ensuring that information on product labels is accurate and not deceptive.
As further explained in the following quotation, the FDA will not take action against any Protetox until after it has been placed on the market, which means that it will take a consumer complaint before the FDA will look into the truth of any health claims that a product is making:
The Federal Trade Commission is granted authority by the FDA to advertise any particular supplement (FTC). The FTC demands enough evidence to support the promises that these supplements are making and that they will work as promised. Any current supplement that has been modified with a new ingredient must also be submitted for review by the FDA in order to confirm its safety for consumers.
Dietary supplement proponents contend that when used appropriately, supplements can greatly enhance the consumer’s diet and exercise program. However, it is the consumer’s duty to conduct the necessary research to determine whether any supplement is suitable for them. Despite the FDA and FTC’s efforts to guarantee that the product is safe, what really needs to be worried about isn’t what the manufacturers are reporting, but what they aren’t disclosing.
For instance, if you’re seeking to buy a fish oil supplement, check the label to see if the source of the fish oils is specified. There are some brands that don’t specify where or what kind of fish the oils came from. Additionally, there are a number of “watchdog” organizations that have taken it upon themselves to conduct additional study on a product to confirm that the claims made by that product are, in fact, true. Even that information is not always available, and you frequently have to buy their papers and studies to find out whether the product you’re considering using is safe. U.S. Pharmacopeia is one such institution that verifies the supplement’s caliber, purity, and effectiveness. It is a reputable, non-profit group.
Yes, the Food and Drug Administration oversees both nutritional supplements and pharmaceuticals on behalf of the government (FDA). However, the FDA controls these two goods in various ways. The Agency is mandated by law to evaluate the efficacy and safety of prescription medications before they are released onto the market. The same is true for “over-the-counter” medications like pain relievers and cold remedies. Contrarily, there is significantly less stringent regulation of dietary supplements.
Not all supplements are harmful; if you’re thinking about including one in your wellness routine, speak with your doctor or pharmacist first. Be aware that certain supplements can have major interaction issues with prescription medications; your healthcare provider can confirm this. Examine the claims made about the abilities of the supplements.
If something seems too good to be true, it most likely is. Don’t assume something is healthy for you just because it is marketed as “all natural” or is available in a health food store. Dietary supplements provide advantages; just be sure to pick the proper one for you. I wish you health.