The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Office of the Inspector General analyzed structure/function claims for a sample of 127 dietary supplements marketed for weight loss or immune system support. Claims may describe the role of a nutrient or ingredient and how it affects body structure, for example, “calcium builds strong bones” or how the ingredients maintain structure such as, “fiber maintains bowel regularity.”
Claims were reviewed to see how well they complied with Food and Drug Administration regulations. The report found that 7 percent of the supplements lacked the required disclaimer, and 20 percent included disease claims not allowed on their labels. These results raise questions about the truthfulness of these claims.
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Contributor: Ellen Schuster, M.S., R.D., Associate State Specialist, University of Missouri Extension, firstname.lastname@example.org, 573-882-1933