The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced that it is taking action to remove from the market any illegal products that claim to prevent, cure, or treat diabetes and related complications.
According to the FDA, many products that are sold illegally may claim that they "can replace medicine in the treatment of diabetes" or that they may prevent or treat the condition.
The FDA states that they include: products sold as "natural" diabetes treatments, but contain undeclared ingredients that may pose a health risk; ayurvedic or homeopathic products and supplements that may claim to prevent, cure, or treat diabetes; unapproved drugs that are sold over-the-counter and claim to treat diabetic complications, such as nerve damage; and prescription drugs that are sold by online pharmacies without a prescription.
The FDA has issued letters to a total of 15 companies, warning them that the sale of diabetes products that are illegally marketed are in violation of federal law. These companies are required to send a written response within 15 business days, detailing how they intend to correct the violations. Failure to do so may result in measures of legal action that may include product seizure or criminal prosecution.
Consumers are advised not to use these or similar products. Illegally marketed products may contain harmful ingredients. They may also be otherwise unsafe or improperly marketed as over-the-counter, when they should be considered prescription products. The FDA warns that the use of such products may cause people with diabetes to delay seeking proper medical treatment.
The FDA urges consumers and healthcare professionals to report side effects related to the use of any of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program.
For more information about diabetes, please visit Natural Standard's Medical Conditions Database.