FDA Sez Homeopathic HCG Supps are Illegal
And – according to USA Today, “fraudulent,” too.
A popular type of weight-loss products, heavily promoted on the Internet, is fraudulent and illegal, Food and Drug Administration officials say.
HCG weight-loss products that promise dramatic results and claim to be homeopathic are sold as drops, pellets and sprays on the Web, in drugstores and at General Nutrition Centers. They are supposed to be used in combination with a very low-calorie diet of 500 calories a day.
…There is no evidence the oral over-the-counter products are effective for weight loss, says Elizabeth Miller, FDA’s leader for the Internet and health fraud team. While they may not be dangerous, they’re at least “economic fraud,” she says.
Because the products do not seem to be “a serious direct health hazard or a serious indirect health hazard,” they have been a lower priority for FDA action than other products. Still, Miller says, “they could be subject to enforcement at any time.”
…Even experts in the supplement industry say the products aren’t legal and don’t work. Andrew Shao of the Council for Responsible Nutrition, an industry group, says HCG is “not considered a legal dietary ingredient and therefore cannot be sold as a dietary supplement. I am not aware of any scientific evidence that supports its use when taken orally.”
Who knew? 😀
Of course, it’s all a bit of a semantic game, isn’t it? A true “homeopathic HCG” would be virtually guaranteed to have no detectable HCG in it whatsoever. Thus, it’s amusing that the FDA would make a distinction between homeopathic HCG and other “drugs” in the the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia, since – from a chemical and pharmacological point of view, they’re indistinguishable from one another.