Author Archive | Harris

Can You Get Too Much Protein?

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Posted 15 September 2021

Protein has achieved a venerated status in the dietary world for everything from building muscle to preventing weight gain. But can you get too much of a good thing?

Protein powders that come in chocolate, strawberry, and cookies and cream flavors are doled out by the scoopful and mixed into smoothies, making it possible to effortlessly consume protein in amounts that far exceed dietary recommendations. A canned protein drink can contain almost as much protein as an eight-ounce steak, and snack bars or a small bag of protein chips can pack more of the macronutrient than a three-egg omelet.

But while some nutritionists have encouraged the protein craze, a number of experts are urging caution. They point out that protein powders and supplements, which come from animal products like whey and casein (byproducts of cheese manufacturing)

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Dangerous weight loss products for sale online with no health warnings

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Posted 25 August 2021

Which? finds substances that can cause heart problems being sold on eBay, Wish and AliExpress

Denis Campbell Health policy editor, The Guardian

Wed 25 Aug 2021

“Dangerous” weight loss products containing substances that can induce a stroke or heart attack are being sold on websites such as eBay without any health warnings, an investigation has found.

The consumer group Which? found dozens of products on sale online containing plant extracts that can make users agitated or aggressive and increase their heart rate and blood pressure.

They all contained either yohimbine or synephrine, substances that the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has said have “considerable potential to cause harm if used without medical supervision or advice”.

Which? bought nine such products, which are used by some people seeking to lose weight, bodybuilders and gym-goers, through the online marketplaces eBay, Wish and AliExpress. Of those, two … Read the rest

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Drug-related liver injury: call for better regulation of supplements

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Posted 26 July 2021

Medical Journal Australia – InSight 

DOCTORS at a Sydney liver transplant centre have raised concerns about the rising rate of drug-induced liver injury (DILI) cases linked to herbal and dietary supplements, warning these cases are often at the severest end of the spectrum.

Paracetamol remains the drug most commonly linked to DILI, a study of DILI cases at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital’s AW Morrow Gastroenterology and Liver Centre found.

There were 115 paracetamol-related cases and 69 non-paracetamol related cases at the centre over the 12 years to 2020. Of the non-paracetamol DILI cases, antibiotics and antifungals were the most commonly implicated medicines (19 cases). However, the proportion of cases linked with herbal and dietary supplements (15 cases) grew steadily over the period, from 15% to 47% of the non-paracetamol cases.

Cases linked with herbal or dietary supplements had especially poor prognoses, the study found, with 90-day … Read the rest

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UK ASA Ruling on Yorktest Laboratories Ltd / IgG Food Intolerance testing

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Posted 12 July 2021

Three complainants challenged whether the claim “YorkTest define Food Intolerance as a food-specific IgG reaction”, and the overall impression of both ads that the test would inform consumers if they had a food intolerance, was misleading and could be substantiated. Another complainant challenged whether the efficacy claims about migraines in both ads and depression in ad (b) were misleading and could be substantiated.

The UK ASA concluded the evidence was insufficient to support the claims.

Similar companies in South Africa make the same unfair claims, .e.g., ImuPro.

ASA Ruling on YorkTest Laboratories Ltd

  • 23 June 2021 ASA

Background

Summary of Council decision:

Two issues were investigated, both of which were upheld.

Ad description

A TV ad and website for YorkTest:

a. The TV ad, seen on 29 January 2018, featured a woman described in on-screen text as a “Nutritionist YorkTest Laboratories” standing in a kitchen in

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UK ASA Ruling on Bio-Medical Research Ltd t/a Slendertone

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Posted 12 July 2021

An UK TV ad for Slendertone, a toning belt, seen in January and February 2019. A voice-over stated, “Meet Slendertone, your personal body toner, who firms and tones your abs, helps shape your waistline and easily fits in with your lifestyle. Clinically proven with results from four weeks. Look and feel amazing.” This product is similar to the advert shown on DSTV for Neotex Hot Belt.

The UK ASA concluded: “We concluded that the impression given by the ad, that the product was able to affect the size of the waist by visibly firming and toning the abdominal muscles, had not been substantiated and that the ad was therefore misleading.”

ASA Ruling on Bio-Medical Research Ltd t/a Slendertone

  • 10 March 2021 ASA

Background

Summary of Council decision:

Two issues were investigated, one of which was Upheld. The other was informally resolved after the advertiser agreed to

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UK ASA Ruling on DNAfit Life Sciences Ltd t/a DNAfit

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Posted 12 July 2021

Similar to the South African company, DNA Analysis, who claims that they are able to create a diet based on your DNA, this UK company made similar claims. The UK ASA found insufficient evidence to support their claims.

ASA Ruling on DNAfit Life Sciences Ltd t/a DNAfit

  • 31 March 2021 ASA

A paid-for ad on Instagram for DNAfit, seen on 29 September 2019, featured an animated double helix and captions that stated “We’re DNA. We know all about your body. Fast twitch muscle fibres give you power. Slow give you endurance. And that’s not all we can tell you. Order your kit now at DNAfit.com”. A caption under the animation stated “Unlock the secret to your ideal diet, vitamin need and exercise response”.

Issue

The complainant, who believed DNA testing could not be used to determine an individual’s diet, vitamin and exercise needs, challenged

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Evidence lacking for “alternative” weight-loss therapies

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Posted 07 July 2021

A systematic review of published research evaluating the efficacy of dietary supplements and “alternative therapies” for weight loss among people at least 18 years of age has found that supportive evidence is weak. Many clinical trials were also hampered by a significant risk of bias due to inconsistent testing methods. Problems with studies include small sample sizes, short follow-up periods, and poor study designs.
Reference: Batsis JA. A systematic review of dietary supplements and alternative therapies for weight loss. Obesity, June 23, 2021

Key findings included:

  • Out of 315 randomized controlled trials included in the review, 52 were classified as having a low risk of bias, of which 16 demonstrated significant weight changes for tested therapies compared to placebo.
  • No high-quality evidence supported acupuncture, calcium-vitamin D supplementation, chocolate/cocoa, phenylpropanolamineguar gumPhaseolus vulgarispyruvate, and mind-body interventions as weight-loss
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Companies warned about misleading “FDA registration certificates.”

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Posted 07 July 2021

The FDA has ordered 25 companies to stop issuing documents that state that a medical device has been registered with the FDA. The certificates often look like official government documents, and many display the FDA logo. The agency believes that the certificates falsely imply that a device has been evaluated, cleared, or approved as effective for its intended purposes. The FDA does not issue any type of device registration certificate, and registration does not denote approval or clearance of a manufacturer or its devices. It merely means that certain information has been provided to the FDA.
Reference: Barrett S. FDA orders 25 companies to stop issuing misleading “FDA registration certificates.” Device Watch, July 4, 2021

The marketers of Healy bioresonance devices are using a certificate which states that their device has been cleared. Although the recent FDA action concerned registration certificates, the same principles … Read the rest

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