On February 2, the New York State Attorney General accused GNC, Target, Walgreens, and Walmart of selling a number of store brand dietary supplements that were fraudulent and in many cases contained ingredients not listed on the labels. He demanded that the retailers remove the products from their shelves in the state of New York. The ‟New York Times” and many other major news outlets ran prominently placed stories about the action.
Overall, the test results claimed to find that just 21 percent of the store brand herbal supplements contained what they claimed it contained– with 79 percent not containing what it claimed, or being contaminated with fillers designed to take up more space.
The seven herbs tested were tablets claiming to contain extracts of: Ginkgo biloba, St. John’s wort, ginseng, garlic, echinacea, valerian, and saw palmetto.
On a side note, the method used to determine authenticity of the supplements was DNA testing, which is not totally accurate. Highly concentrated extracts often no longer contain the DNA from the herbs. We have warned for years against using Walmart supplements, and still feel that way. But even to us these tests were a bit unfair.
On a second side note, a related article in the New York TImes falsely claimed that the supplement industry has no oversight. There is oversight. The companies Walmart uses are the cheapest companies out there, and my not be a part of the standard supplement community, but all the supplements we use in our clinic are from companies that follow the current good manufacturing practices (cGMPs) as published by the FDA,
Hope this helps,
Dr Robin Barnes
This week’s bit of Useless Information: Facts do not cease because they are ignored. – Aldous Huxley
This email is courtesy of Matthew Barnes, D.C. and Robin Barnes, D.C. Neither this nor any of our emails are intended to be medical advice and should not be taken as such. They are opinion and are for informational purposes only. None of the nutrients discussed here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.