Metabolife Calls for Mandatory Reporting System to FDA

Calls for Extensive New Regulations and Provides Consumer Records to Government

Ephedra Education Council
The Ephedra Education Council (EEC) provides factual information about dietary supplements containing Ephedra and promotes the safe and responsible marketing of these supplements. More information can be found at

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Metabolife International, Inc. ("Metabolife") today continued its long-standing efforts to help develop responsible regulation of dietary supplements. In a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, Metabolife called on HHS to require the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to institute a mandatory reporting system for companies that manufacture and market dietary supplements containing ephedra. Metabolife also voluntarily submitted to HHS records of consumer contacts in order to assist the FDA's development of regulations for the dietary supplement industry.

"For 5 years, Metabolife has encouraged its consumers to voluntarily contact it with health-related questions," Lanny J. Davis, an attorney for Metabolife said. "Metabolife's release of this data today is intended to assist the development of a mandatory reporting system for the benefit of a public who have come to rely on the safety and efficacy of these products."

Among its proposals to Secretary Thompson, Metabolife has offered the following:

Help lead and fund an industry-wide consumer information campaign to warn against abuses of ephedra products, especially by young athletes and minors;

Help fund a blue ribbon commission to be established by HHS or NIH to supervise one or more long-term clinical studies of the safety and efficacy of ephedrine-caffeine combinations for weight control; and

Help fund the creation of a properly constructed FDA mandatory reporting system.

"It is unfortunate that a Washington-based organization named "Public Citizen" today has chosen to make false accusations in a political arena rather than join with Metabolife in seeking additional scientific examination and responsible regulation of dietary supplements," Davis said. "Now is the time for cooperation among industry, consumer groups, and regulators, and for attention to fact and science. It is not the time for politics and unfounded allegations."

"We are hopeful that in cooperation with FDA, consumer groups, and scientists, a responsible science-based regulation will finally be adopted," said Mr. Davis.

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