Monday, 23 March 2015

Does your wrinkle cream really work? FDA warns about false claims

No, that skin cream cannot reverse aging. It can’t repair DNA damage and it can’t cure rosacea.

RunPhoto / Getty Images
The FDA's taken on five cosmetic companies in the past five months, telling them to stop makingmedical claims for wrinkle creams. 

One product at a time, the Food and Drug Administration is taking on the beauty industry and some of the over-the-top claims being made for some of the products. Five warnings have gone out since November.

The latest warning letter went out to Strivectin, whose wrinkle creams are sold at retailers that range from Costco to Nordstrom.

The language FDA objects to?
  • “Clinically proven to change the anatomy of a wrinkle”
  • “This superb age-fighting serum is super charged with …potent elastin stimulating peptides”
  • “Potent elastin-stimulating peptides help enhance skin structure”
“The claims on your website indicate that the products are intended to affect the structure or any function of the human body, rendering them drugs under the (Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic) Act,” FDA says in a warning letter sent to the company.

And when Strivectin says its “Advanced Tightening Neck Cream,” can “restore the elastin fiber architecture, providing noticeable lift and improving resistance to gravity”, it’s actually claiming that product is a drug— and it’s one that hasn’t been through the FDA’s review process, the agency said in its letter.

In response, Strivectin has changed the wording on its website. “Over time, the visible effects of gravity appear reversed for even more refined and toned definition of the neck line, profile, and décolleté,” it now says.

There’s no more mention of “restoring” elastin fiber.

“We stand by the efficacy of our products which is proven by scientific testing and clinical trials,”

Emmy Brooks, vice president for beauty at Strivectin, said by e-mail. “We are doing everything in our power to ensure that our communication to the public complies with the Federal Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act, per the Food & Drug Administration’s request.”

Wrinkle creams really don’t do much besides temporarily add moisture to the skin. “There are no wrinkle creams that are going to get rid of wrinkles,” says Bryan Barron, co-author of “The Original Beauty Bible” and consultant to the beauty mythbusting website Paula’s Choice. 

“The companies may want you to think it is about exotic plant extracts harvested at 3 a.m. off the coast of Brittany,” Barron says. So-called tightening ingredients are nothing secret or special, he adds. “There are cosmetic ingredients that you can put on your skin that will make it feel tighter,” he said. But it’s just perception— and they’re mundane ingredients such as polyvinyl alcohol or even egg whites (which may show up on a label as “serum albumin”).

New York-based dermatologist Dr. Fayne Frey says “anti-aging” agents are pretty much bogus. “If you are looking for ‘the fountain of youth’ in a bottle, you will not find it in over-the-counter skin care products,” Frey advises on her website that tries to rebut some of the claims.

“The ‘workhorse’ of any over-the counter anti-wrinkle cream is its ability to hydrate the skin. As moisturizers, these products increase the water content in the most superficial layers of skin temporarily improving the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.”

FDA says it will continue to do what it can, but it doesn’t have much authority.

“The law doesn’t require cosmetic firms to register with FDA or to submit their products, ingredients, labeling or claims to FDA for approval before the products go on the market (with the exception of color additives, which must be approved by FDA),” an FDA spokesperson said by e-mail.

All the agency can do is look for when a cosmetic maker goes over the line in making a claim.

Other recent warnings have gone to L’Oreal USA, taken to task for saying its “Rosaliac AR Intense” can reduce redness or rosacea, and for saying Mela-D Pigment Control can lighten dark spots.

Chaga Mountain was asked to stop claiming the mushroom extracts in its products could fight cancer and the AIDS virus. Cell Vitals appears to have taken down its website after FDA noticed its claims about human stem cells and chemicals that the company suggested might act in ways similar to Botox in stopping wrinkles.

And although they may register with the FDA, they don’t submit non-medical products for review.
“Consumers should be aware that, although companies are making drug claims for these products, they are being sold to consumers as cosmetics and therefore FDA has not evaluated them for safety and effectiveness,” FDA says.

There's only one true anti-aging ingredient, and that's sunscreen, Barron says. And it only works to prevent skin aging, not to cure it.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Product Review - ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula

What Is ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula?
It is a dietary supplement made with herbal ingredients for improving joint health. The formula uses ingredients that have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. It also helps reduce joint pain by addressing inflammation which is one of the primary causes of joint discomfort. The formula also helps improve circulation to assist in reducing inflammation for optimum pain relief. It also works to support healthy cartilage and improve joint strength.

Manufacturer Information

ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula is from Tango Advanced Nutrition which is a company that offers different herbal formulations designed by scientists and herbal experts. The company offers a broad range of formulations but Tango Advanced Nutrition is not well-known in the supplement industry and it still doesn't have an established reputation. 

What's in ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula?

One of the supplement's active ingredients is Gastrodia (Tian Ma) which has been shown to offer novel pain relief through anti-inflammatory effects. Another ingredient is Rehmannia (Shi Di Huang) which contains catapol, an iridoid glycoside that helps protect dopaminergic neurons by inhibiting microglial activation. The formula also includes Tang-kuei (BaiZhi) which is a powerful natural anti-inflammatory ingredient that also contains potent antioxidants which help protect joint cells. It also contains Notoperygium (QiangHuo) which is traditionally used to relieve aching limbs and joints. 

ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula also contains Eucommia (Du Zhong) which strengthens the bones and muscles. Traditionally, it is used to relieve lower back and leg discomfort. Chinese Ligusticum (Gao Ben) is another ingredient which reduces inflammation to relieve joint pain. The formula also includes Cythula (Niu Xi) to relieve joint discomfort and swelling caused by collagen issues. It also contains Scrophularia (XuanShen) which inhibits several inflammatory factors to relieve joint pain. The last active ingredient is Aconite (Fu Zi) which contains BLA, a compound that reduces sodium channel currents thus blocking the over-activity of pain signals. 

Advantages of ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula

  • The supplement doesn't contain dangerous chemical ingredients. 
  • It is made with natural ingredients only. 
  • Some active ingredients are clinically proven to be effective. 
  • Most ingredients have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. 

Disadvantages of ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula

  • There is no proof that the supplement really works. 
  • It has not undergone thorough safety testing.
  • It is not from an established supplement company. 
  • There is no free trial or money back guarantee. 
  • Some users experienced side effects, such as stomach upset, after using this natural joint support formula. 
Recommended Use

Take 2 capsules two to four times daily depending on the severity of your joint pain. 

Possible Side Effects!

Do not take ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula if you are on the blood thinning medication Warfarin. To prevent adverse interactions with medication, take 2 hours apart from any kind of medication. Make sure you're not hypersensitive to any of the ingredients before use. 

Expert Opinion

The formulation of ArthriPhase is above average because of the fact that most active ingredients are clinically proven to be effective. However, the main problem is the lack of clinical testing done on the product itself. Thus, there is no substantial evidence that it is effective or safe. It is a product worth trying but there are better formulations on the market that are actually proven to be effective. 

User Feedback

I've been suffering from joint pain specifically on my knees and ankles for years because of my obesity. I'm currently trying to lose weight by restricting food intake and jogging 5 times a week. The exercise is making my joint pain worse so I'm experimenting with different joint pain supplements. ArthriPhase is nothing special and it didn't deliver substantial results. There are better products that offered better pain relief. This is just an average formulation and I won't bother buying again. John C., Baltimore

I like this product and have been using it for about a year already. It is expensive but I think it is worth the price. I was suffering from mild joint pain on my wrist and knees from the cold weather and due to my age and I think ArthriPhase solved my problem. It is a good product and I recommend it to anyone suffering from joint pain or discomfort. – Mary J., Anchorage 

Bottom Line

All in all, ArthriPhase Natural Joint Support Formula is nothing extraordinary when it comes to joint pain relief. The formulation includes ingredients that are backed by clinical studies but the main problem is the lack of testing done on the supplement. There is actually no evidence that the product works aside from the positive reviews from some users. There are many better options on the market that are more effective.

Where To Find It
Best Deals and Pricing Available at