Beware of supplements promising big relief

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You might try to get relief from occasional body aches and pains with an over-the-counter treatment. But for people with severe joint stiffness or mobility restrictions due to arthritis or fibromyalgia, it’s a good idea to get medical advice. According to the FTC, some products that claim to treat those serious conditions don’t live up to the hype. Today the FTC announced a settlement against a company that claimed its "clinically proven" supplement promised "complete and long-lasting relief" from joint pain.

According to the FTC, Supple LLC promoted itself as a “leading advocate” for ending joint, bone, back and muscle pain. The company made claims that its glucosamine and chondroitin supplement, named Supple, provides relief from chronic and severe pain for all arthritis sufferers, repairs cartilage and joint structures, and restores mobility and joint function – even for people who have been severely limited by joint problems. But the FTC says the company’s scientific support for these claims was painfully lacking – and charged Supple with making false or unsupported health claims.

According to the FTC, the company worked hard to convince people to buy Supple, which cost between $69.95 and $79.95 for a 24-day supply. First, the company’s founder and CEO appeared in heavily-aired infomercials touting Supple’s supposed benefits, based on his “unbelievable” recovery from hip arthritis. Then there was the “independent” and “impartial” expert endorser – an Ivy League-educated doctor (did I mention she’s the CEO’s ex-wife?) who hosted Supple’s infomercial, the “Smart Medicine Show.” She was supposed to bring credibility to Supple’s health claims. But the FTC didn't buy it, alleging that Supple couldn’t deliver on its big promises.

When it comes to supplements that make big claims, is it worth gambling your money – and your health? Check out this handy infographic that can help you decipher dietary supplement ads, and know the right questions to ask. And for more information, read our article on dietary supplements.

Blog Topics: 
Health & Fitness

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what about this pill that Stephen hawking swears by?

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