I recently received this email from Shane Ellison, a.k.a. The People’s Chemist. I have written to you throughout the years that I find Shane’s work useful. (See here, here, here, and here for starters). Now Shane is explaining to readers how lab made chemicals could end up in your “all natural” supplements.
Please read with care.
Currently there’s a war going on between synthetic and botanical
ingredients in the health supplement industry.
Should supplement makers have the right to put fake (synthetic) man-made
chemicals in their products, or not?
…And should these synthetic ingredients have the right to be called
“natural” or not?
To understand the distinction, here’s a simple break down:
“Botanical” means it comes from a plant — it’s made by Mother
Nature. It’s REAL.
“Synthetic” means produced in a lab — man-made and altered, a clone,
a copy — it’s FAKE.
Pretty simple, right?
The government identifies a botanical as “a plant, alga, or fungus, or a
physical part or secretion of a plant, alga, or fungus, such as bark,
leaves or fruits.”
In a recent court case between a shady supplement huckster and the FDA,
this simple definition of “botanical” came into question.
Hi-Tech — a supplement manufacturer owned by CEO, Jared Wheat — has
sold tens of millions of dollars worth of products containing the synthetic
ingredient, DMAA (1, 3-dimethylamylamine).
DMAA is “an amphetamine-like stimulant that can cause heart attacks and
strokes,” says scientist, Bastiaan Venhuis, who studies tainted
supplements at the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment
in the Netherlands.
For years, the FDA has been trying to get DMAA off the market. They finally
got their wish…sort of.
In April 2017 a federal judge concluded that DMAA is not a dietary
ingredient. “The judge also determined products containing DMAA don’t
meet a safety standard for food, rendering them adulterated and subject to
seizure,” says Natural Products Insider.
Predictably, Hi-Tech is fighting the decision and plans to bring the case
all the way to the Supreme Court…while wasting everyone’s time and
money. Until there’s a final decision, they’re legally allowed to
continue selling DMAA-laced products.
But that isn’t even the most ridiculous part of this story…
The court case opened up more questions about the nature of synthetic
“In examining whether DMAA qualifies as a botanical dietary ingredient,
the judge concluded FDA’s definition of a botanical was ‘arbitrary and
not entitled to deference,’” writes Natural Products Insider.
How the hell is it arbitrary?
Real is real.
Fake is fake.
Meanwhile, the supplement industry is going bonkers. Showing their true
colors, supplement hucksters are working hard to have “synthetic”
ingredients classified as “botanical.” (That would be a supplement
huckster’s wet dream!)
The “debate” is like apes arguing over whether yellow bananas are
Today, the entire supplement aisle is filled with synthetic “vitamins.”
Their just not labeled botanical.
If the industry get their way, botanical will soon be displayed on their
labels and the masses will once again be duped…even more.
The right thing to do is to label this garbage “synthetic.”
Synthetic, man-made ingredients are NOT identical to plants made by
Mother Nature. To argue otherwise is an insult to us all…yet it’s the norm.
“At a daylong workshop in September produced by the United Natural
Products Alliance, based in Salt Lake City, an informal poll of close to
200 individuals in the room that represent a range of supplement
manufacturers, more than half of them said they used synthetic
botanicals,” reports New Hope.
Vitamin D…folic acid…aspartic acid…gluatamine…CoQ10…
I’m sure they’re all salivating at the prospect of having their shitty
products someday be classified as real “botanicals.”
Meanwhile, Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals is charging full-steam ahead, leading
the “stupidity” circus.
“The court battle over DMAA may now move to the 11th Circuit Court of
Appeals, as Wheat has vowed to take this case as far as he can, while
continuing to conduct business as usual, including selling DMAA in dietary
supplements,” says Natural Products Insider.
“Business is usual” is where profits come before health and safety.
If your goal is to achieve true health, you have to be vigilant.
Read the products labels.
Question the motives of all companies you purchase supplements from.
Boycott anything that contains synthetic ingredients.
Read more from Shane at his website here.