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FDA Loses Suit About Health Claims

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

2010-06-09 FDA Loses Suit copyWill a U.S. District Court ruling slapping the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for censoring scientifically backed claims about the cancer-fighting properties of the mineral selenium mean anything to those who would like to promote the positive effects of UV exposure? A leading health news editor hopes so.

Mike Adams, editor of, dedicated his column this week to a U.S. District Court ruling this week on selenium. The Washington, D.C., court ruled that FDA violated the First Amendment rights of a selenium supplement distributor by censoring scientifically based claims about how the mineral may reduce cancer risk.

“In this court case, ALLIANCE FOR NATURAL HEALTH, et al. vs. KATHLEEN SEBELIUS, et al., the judge ruled that the FDA violated the First Amendment rights of the plaintiffs by restricting their free speech about the anti-cancer benefits of their selenium supplements,” Adams wrote, quoting ANH attorney Jonathan Emord – who Adams refers to as “health freedom attorney” – as saying, “The decision… reaffirms that FDA is subject to the strictures of the First Amendment in its evaluation of health claims and it faults FDA for failing to follow that standard, holding its suppression of the selenium-cancer risk reduction claims unconstitutional.”

Emord continued, “The Court concludes that the FDA… has not provided any empirical evidence, such as ‘studies’ or ‘anecdotal evidence,’ that consumers would be misled by… plaintiffs’ claims were they accompanied by qualifications. Moreover, the explanation the FDA offers to demonstrate that plaintiffs’ claims are misleading – that the claims leave out pertinent information – is not support for banning the claims entirely…”

Adams has criticized governmental agencies who have questioned the claim that UVB in indoor tanning is an abundant source of vitamin D production – an indisputable finding.

Adams is cautiously optimistic about what the precedent means. “This could be the beginning of the end of FDA censorship of truthful, scientifically-supported health claims,” he writes, exercising caution. “I want to be perfectly clear what we stand for here. I do not support a Wild West approach to free speech about supplements where any company can claim anything they want whether it’s true or not. That can get entirely out of hand, and it would only encourage the kind of marketing fraud we now see rampant in the pharmaceutical industry. What I support is truthful health claims that can be backed by a minimum of three articles published in peer-reviewed science journals. This threshold of scientifically credibility is high enough to avoid outright fraudulent quack claims while still allowing truthful claims to be reasonably met through scientific inquiry. If such a rule were adopted, it would open the industry to making a wealth of truthful claims about the beneficial effects of foods, herbs and supplements.”

Smart Tan encourages tanning facilities to promote a cosmetic message, correctly promoting the risks of UV overexposure.

To read the Natural News story click here.

To read the ANH announcement click here.