Nutritional Product Labeling Practices
This information is presently being developed. Suffice it to say that at the present time there are simply no legal requirements concerning "truth in labeling" for nutritional products. About the only restriction is that manufacturers of nutritional products may not make claims concerning the health benefits of their products. For example, it has long been common knowledge that cranberry juice is beneficial in the treatment of urinary tract infections. However, although the manufacturer of cranberry food products may not make that claim, unaffiliated third parties may make such claims, whether or not such claims are "approved by the F.D.A." F.D.A. approval has little or no bearing on whether or not a product is truly effective for the use for which it is being advertised or sold, or even whether or not it is safe for human consumption.
Any product that contains only 10% natural ingredients in it may be labeled and advertised as a "natural" product. Products may contain large amounts of harmful ingredients that are not required to listed on the label (MSG for example, is known to be a major cause of migraine headaches, but it is not required to be listed on the ingredients of any packaged food product).
A client of ours recently purchased a bottle of "St. John's Wort" at a national chain-store "nutrition center," and complained to us that it did not seem to be helping her. Upon examination of the bottle, we found that although the product was labeled as "St. John's Wort" the primary ingredient listed was talc (yes, talcum powder), and that there was no St. John's Wort herb listed anywhere in the product's list of ingredients.