No DMAA in geranium, pelargonium

Research determines DMAA is not natural in origin and should not be used as an ingredient in dietary supplements.

Scientists at the public health organization NSF International and the US Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine (USARIEM) have published a research paper confirming that 1,3 dimethylamylamine, also known as DMAA, is not present in Geranium or Pelargonium species, or their essential oils. The research findings from NSF International and USARIEM further support research conducted by other laboratories at the universities of Milan (Italy), Mississippi, Texas at Arlington as well as ElSohly Laboratories, Inc. and the National Measurement Institute in Australia.

This is an important finding as DMAA, a substance which acts like a stimulant (e.g. amphetamine) in the body, presents a public health concern. Several dietary supplement manufacturers have incorporated DMAA into products by incorrectly classifying the substance as a natural constituent of Geranium or Pelargonium. And, under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA), any naturally occurring ingredient, including any constituents of Geranium, can be sold over the counter as a dietary supplement.

Products containing DMAA have been linked to 86 reported health problems and at least five deaths.* As a result, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have issued several warning letters to manufacturers who have formulated their products with DMAA and are urging people not to consume these products.

“Products that are linked to illness and death have no place in the dietary supplement industry. NSF International and the US Army research reveals that the DMAA found in these harmful products is a synthetic pharmaceutical and should be removed from over the counter products to avoid further harm to consumers,” said Ed Wyszumiala, general manager of NSF International’s Dietary Supplement Certification programs.

NSF International in partnership with a diverse group of stakeholders from industry, academia and regulatory agencies developed the only American National Standard for dietary supplements (NSF/ANSI Standard 173). Testing and certification of dietary supplements to this standard helps protect consumers by verifying that dietary supplements have accurate labels and do not contain harmful levels of contaminants.

The NSF Certified for Sport® program takes the NSF Dietary Supplement Certification program a step further by screening dietary supplements for more than 170 athletic banned substances. This program is used by the NFL, NHL, MLB, PGA, LPGA Canadian Center for Ethics in Sport (CCES) and the New York City Police Department. Additionally, NSF conducts ongoing testing and audits the manufacturing facility to confirm compliance to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) for both NSF Dietary Supplement and Certified for Sport Certifications.

“NSF International’s Dietary Supplement and Certified for Sport certification programs help consumers and athletes make more informed decisions knowing that what is on the label matches what is in the bottle and they are not consuming any unintended substances like DMAA,” said Wyszumiala.


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