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Hiding in plain sight: tainted dietary supplements

The FDA sent out new tainted supplement notifications today, warning the public of six dietary supplements that contain hidden active pharmaceutical ingredients. In the US, dietary supplements aren't considered drugs and therefore don't have to be tested by the FDA before going on the market. This allows supplement manufacturers to get their products on the market quickly, but this procedure is often rife with abuse. Sneaky manufacturers often include active pharmaceutical ingredients in their supplements, especially weight loss and erectile dysfunction products, most likely because their "all natural" ingredients won't do the job without the help of the real stuff.

Adding undeclared ingredients is incredibly dangerous because we have no idea where the ingredients were made and just how much is in each supplement. Pharmaceutical ingredients are strictly regulated for a reason: there can be dangerous and sometimes deadly side effects or interactions when taken in the wrong dose or combined with other medications. That's what makes these tainted products so scary. Consumers have no idea what they are really taking and just how dangerous they can be.

To keep these illicit products off the market, the FDA regularly tests dietary supplements to make sure that they are safe and don't include any pharmaceutical ingredients. Sadly, Dick's Hard UpLiu Bian LiEyefulGoldReallas3 Hard Knights and Full Throttle On Demand did not pass the test. All of these products were found to contain sildenafil (the active ingredient in Viagra), tadalafil (the active ingredient in Cialis), or structurally similar substances.

This is just another reminder to be extra careful with dietary supplements that are making big claims that seem too good to be true. If you have questions about a product, check out our website to get more information and talk to your doctor.