Industry Warns Against Supplements Claiming to Treat Coronavirus

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Conceptual illustration of the coronavirus as if it were observed from a microscope. Recently it was discovered in china and its outbreak is feared by the authorities.

Washington, D.C.—A coalition of Industry trade associations is reminding consumers and retailers that dietary supplements cannot claim to treat, prevent, or cure the coronavirus, in a statement released Tuesday.

The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA), Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), and the United Natural Products Alliance (UNPA) note in the statement that they all support the “responsible sale and use of vitamins, minerals, herbs, and other dietary supplements that provide many positive benefits promoting better health and wellness. However, we are concerned that some marketers of dietary supplements or other products may be promoting them with claims of prevention or treatment of Coronavirus.”

They add that, while research supports the use of certain supplements to support and maintain immune system health, they are unaware of any clinical research that supports use of a supplement specifically to treat or prevent the Novel Coronavirus. Further, DSHEA would prevent marketers of dietary supplements from promoting a supplement with disease claims.

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The trade associations therefore present the following advisory:

  • Marketers and retailers of dietary supplements should refuse to stock or sell any supplements that are presented as treating, curing or preventing Coronavirus.
  • Marketers and retailers should refrain from promoting any dietary supplement as a cure, treatment or prevention for Coronavirus.
  • Consumers should avoid any product that is claiming to treat, cure or prevent Coronavirus and report such products to the Food and Drug Administration.
  • Anyone who believes they may have Coronavirus or may have come in contact with Coronavirus should contact a healthcare professional immediately. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more information on Coronavirus and the proper actions to take if you suspect you are ill.

The statement concludes: “Each trade association and its member companies prioritizes the safety and well-being of consumers above all else. The responsible industry is committed to providing the public with safe, high-quality dietary supplement products that provide many positive benefits to promote better health and wellness.

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