The manufacturer of a popular dietary supplement, LDM-100, says that it will cease advertising its product as an antibacterial. A consumer watchdog group became concerned that there was no scientific evidence to back up this claim, and it might cause consumers to choose the herbal supplement over a clinically proven antibiotic medication, leading to serious injury or death.
LDM-100 is a liquid herbal supplement sold in a dropper bottle. The product is manufactured and sold by a Utah-based company, Barlow Herbal Specialties. The main ingredient is Lomatium dissectum. The product is a liquid extraction from the root of the plant. There is no scientific evidence that this herb has significant antibacterial benefits.
In the advertising for the product, Barlow claimed that LDM-100 was a “broad spectrum antibiotic, virastatic, bacteriostatic, fungicidal” medication. In addition, the company claimed that the anti-fungal effects of their product could be used to treat the flu, colds, respiratory infections, urinary tract infections, staph and strep infections, warts, and skin infections.
The watchdog group claimed that Barlow implied that their herbal product was as effective as a pharmaceutical medicine, which might mislead a consumer into choosing the herbal treatment over the pharmaceutical treatment. The name of the group is the National Advertising Division (NAD) of the Council of Better Business Bureaus.
The manufacturers of dietary supplements and herbal supplements are not required by law to prove that their product is safe or effective. They are not required to submit safety data to the FDA, and the FDA does not need to approve these products before they are sold in the U.S. However, it is against the law to claim that a dietary supplement or an herbal supplement can treat, cure, or prevent a specific disease. A product for this purpose is considered a drug, and the company selling the product must conduct extensive clinical studies to prove that the product is safe for human consumption and actually works.
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