The supplement industry touches consumers across America making billions in revenue each year. It comes as a shock to most when they first hear the hard truth that supplements are not approved by the FDA. The idea that such a large market regarding the health of millions is unregulated makes me a healthy skeptic. I am especially interested in the market of fitness supplements. Supplement companies involved in the fitness industry make claims every day about the effects their supplements will have on you. I want to find out if these claims are all just a hoax or if some supplements actually work. I would also like to see if the supplements in question are safe to take and would like to create a list of ingredients you should look for when researching the correct supplements for you.

So far I have found that although supplements do not need FDA approval there are several guidelines written in law that companies must follow. These set of laws are written under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act. Within this act the FDA has said what ingredients have been tested to be safe and are viable for incorporation into their supplement. If the has any suspicion that a supplement company is making false claims about what is in their product they are able to perform a chemical test on the product. According to, if their findings show the company is violating the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act in any way they are able to issue and immediate recall of the product. The only issue to this system is that everybody and their mothers owns a supplement company and it is very hard to stay on top of all of these companies, forcing the FDA to focus more on the big name supplement brands leaving the little guys to skate under the radar.

Photo by J@YGS


CC BY-SA 4.0 The Controversy Surrounding Workout Supplements by Trevor is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


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Youth Voices is organized by teachers at local sites of the National Writing Project and in partnership with Educator Innovator.

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