If improving your well-being is a New Year’s resolution, perhaps consider taking nutritional supplements. But before you hit the ‘buy’ button, Consumer Reports has an important warning about potentially dangerous substances found in some supplements sold online.
Sildenafil, tadalafil, and fluoxetine are not only difficult to pronounce, they are also active ingredients in popular prescription drugs. Sildenafil is in Viagra, tadalafil is in Cialis, and fluoxetine is in Prozac.
You may be surprised to learn that the Food and Drug Administration also found those ingredients in some weight loss and sexual enhancement supplements sold on eBay and Amazon. Some of the tainted products sold on Amazon were even labeled
Number-One-Best Seller '' or Amazon’s Choice, ” according to an FDA press release.
The latest from Consumer Reports magazine.
It is illegal for a dietary supplement to contain drugs and the ingredients must be accurately listed on the label. But what the FDA found was essentially “hidden” drugs in many of these supplements.
Ebay responded to Consumer Reports by saying it was “reviewing the site” and would remove the contaminated products. Amazon said it was “reviewing the FDA’s information” and would take action accordingly.
Even if the companies remove the contaminated supplements identified by the FDA, that may not solve the bigger problem. This is just the latest in a series of studies that have identified undeclared and potentially dangerous drugs in dietary supplements.
If you are taking a supplement, check the FDA database on contaminated products to make sure it is not listed. And even if the supplement you are taking is not on the list, you still need to be careful.
Talk to a doctor or other health care professional about whether the ingredients may interact with the medications or supplements you are currently taking.
If you experience a reaction from a supplement, the FDA would like to hear from you. Submit a so-called ‘Adverse Event Report’ online. And if it’s severe, call your doctor or 911.