The Government Wants to Take Away Our Vitamins and Supplements

Peggy Williams (
19 May 92 22:30:20 GMT

Perhaps you have heard about the pending legislation that will give
the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) considerable power and enable
them to severely restrict the vitamins and supplements that have
been available to us for many years. You can help prevent this from
happening by contacting your Congressmen and Senators. I am posting
this message on behalf of the San Francisco Chapter of the National
Health Federation, a non-profit health rights organization.

The bottom line is that in Fall 1992, laws may be passed
(HR 3642/S 2135) that could likely result in the following:

* Dramatically reduce the potency of vitamins and minerals, (such
as Vitamin A and C) reclassifying high potency vitamins and
supplements as drugs. This means that common vitamins and
minerals that are in potencies greater than is found in foods will
be regulated as drugs, and only available through prescription.

* Make supplements now on health food store shelves (and even in
your supermarket) unavailable for over-the-counter purchase.
Amino acids will be among those supplements that will be available
by prescription only.

* Eliminate certain kinds of nutrients altogether, those which
"have not been shown to be essential in human nutrition,"
including selenium, chromium, rutin, bioflavonoids, and other
"similar substances."

* Stop the importation of supplements such as herbs, which will
be highly regulated and possibly eliminated.

* Any education material, whether product specific or not, may be
considered a "third party endorsement," and therefore any person
even referring to a book about herbs or vitamins may be considered
to be "making a health claim for an 'unapproved' drug."

How is this possible?

The Nutritional Labeling Education Act (NLEA) was enacted in 1990
and was primarily designed to provide the American public with
clearer information and standardized terms about the nutritional
content of foods. The NLEA mandates that the FDA develop guidelines
for how health claims can be made on food products. However, the
FDA has proposed strict regulations that extend far beyond the
initial intent of the legislation. Historically, the FDA has shown
an inherent bias against the dietary supplement industry.

Now there is concrete evidence -- the FDA has taken severe actions
to limit the public's freedom to access these nutrients and
alternative forms of health care, as indicated by their latest
gun-point raid on Jonathan Wright, M.D, a physician well-known and
well respected in Washington state who used alternative vitamin
therapy. The thorough confiscation of this doctor's vitamins,
minerals, patient medical records, computer equipment, and other
inventory occurred on May 6, 1992.

Although many people question the use of vitamins, supplements, and
herbs in the maintenance and regulation of human health, these
products have been available to the general public for many years
with comparatively few adverse consequences, as compared to the
thousands of complaints registered yearly against medical drugs. In
this age of increasing health concerns, we must maintain our FREEDOM
to choose the kinds of health care we feel is appropriate for us,
and not allow the FDA to take over this very personal responsibility!

What can you do to help prevent this from happening?

feel about the proposed regulations. You can:

1. Write a letter voicing your concerns.

For those who are interested, I have a couple of sample letters
I can send you via e-mail. Handwritten letters carry the most
weight, though a form letter is better than nothing.

If you need information about your local Congressmen/Senators,
contact me; I may be able to provide you with specific names
and addresses.

2. Call your local office (in the local Government section of
the telephone book).

3. If you are aware of the Jonathan Wright case (described
briefly above), you can also send a FAX to Sam Skinner, Chief
of Staff and the President, letting them know your sentiments
about the recent FDA attacks. A dedicated FAX line has been
set up for this function; it is (202) 456-2461.

friends, and family. Check with your local health food store and
natural health care provider for up-to-date information.

I have more details on the proposed legislation; contact me via
e-mail if you want more information. Let's act now to preserve our
FREEDOM in Health Care!

Peggy Williams

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed above do not necessarily represent
the views of my employer.

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