Garlic supplements are one of the most popular herbal products in the U.S. Garlic has been described as a wonder food. It reportedly lowers cholesterol, prevents dangerous blood clots, reduces blood pressure, prevents cancer, and protects against bacterial and fungal infections.
Holy nutraceutical, Batman!
Yet, when ConsumerLab tested 16 brands of garlic supplements, they found that one product lacked any of a key garlic compound. Another had less than 1% of the expected amount of this compound. In all, 8 of the 16 products failed testing.
You must subscribe to ConsumerLab.com to get a full copy of the results, but if you just browse through the summary results of this test and other herbals and supplements you’ll see a disturbing pattern of failed quality control in the manufacturing process.
It makes one wonder. How much of the inconsistency in clinical trial results of herbal remedies is the result of poor qualtity control? Who looks out for the public interest with respect to quality control in manufacturing of “natural” products?
John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.