June 1, 2000
FTC Comes Down Hard on ADHD Supplements
WASHINGTON--The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has questioned dietary supplementsmarketed toward children. "A lot of these products have not been proven to provideany benefit in some cases, and may even present safety risks," stated JodieBernstein, director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection.
The FTC noted that these dietary supplements were advertised as preventives or curesfor a variety of childhood ailments, ranging from colds to attention deficit hyperactivitydisorder (ADHD). In three of the cases brought by the FTC, the marketers were promotingsupplements as safe and effective treatments for ADHD, such as in Efamol's Efalex andEfalex Focus print ad claims appearing in Parenting, Parade and People.
FTC's complaint alleges that Efalex and Efalex Focus, supplements containing essentialfatty acids, cannot substantiate claims that Efalex can mitigate or cure the effects ofADHD. The proposed consent agreement with Efamol would prohibit the company from makingclaims that any dietary supplement can cure, prevent, treat or mitigate ADHD problemsunless scientific evidence can back the claims. For more information regarding thismatter, visit www.ftc.gov or call Brenda Mack at (202)326-2182.
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