Saturday, November 30, 2019

Some brain-boosting supplements contain an unapproved drug that could harm users, study warns8

Promising to lift brain fog or improve memory, brain-boosting supplements have joined sexual-enhancement and weight-loss remedies in the lightly regulated world of dietary supplements. These products may be sold legally with broad-brush come-ons like these, as long as they don’t make specific claims about treating a disease — or contain actual drugs.
New research led by Dr. Pieter Cohen of Harvard Medical School documents five supplement brands for sale in the U.S. that contain various amounts of piracetam, a drug prescribed in European countries for cognitive impairment in dementia but not approved in the U.S. 
The Food and Drug Administration doesn’t allow piracetam to be sold as a dietary supplement and has issued warning letters in the past to other companies marketing supplements that contain it. Though the drug is approved in Europe, evidence for using piracetam to improve cognition was “inadequate,” a Cochrane Review analyzing 24 studies that enrolled more than 11,000 patients concluded in 2012.
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