NatureMade Omega-3 Xtra Blend

February 7th, 2018

The National Advertising Division (NAD) says there’s something fishy about a fish oil supplement’s claim to provide “Nearly 4X Better Absorption” than competing fish oil products. What is it? A lack of competent and reliable scientific evidence to support the claim, according to the self-regulatory body.

Following a review NAD recommended that Pharmavite stop advertising that its NatureMade Omega-3 Xtra Blend supplement offers an absorption rate four times better than the other guys. When Pharmavite declined to do so, NAD referred the matter to the FTC for further review.

At issue, or fish-ue, if you will (though we understand if you won’t), is our bodies’ ability to absorb omega-3 fatty acids, which can be difficult unless taken with a high-fat meal, says NAD.

In support of its better-absorption claims, Pharmavite referred NAD to a study that shows how the technology it uses to make its supplement increases absorption of EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids without the help of a high-fat meal. While NAD did not fault the study itself, it ultimately found the study insufficient to support the company’s claims for the simple reason that Pharmavite’s supplement contains less EPA and DHA than the amounts tested.

Reckitt Benckiser, maker of MegaRed Omega-3, brought the initial ad challenge to NAD.

Whether or not the FTC lets Pharmavite off the hook, we’ll just have to wait and see.

For more TINA.org coverage on supplements, click here.

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The National Advertising Division, or NAD, is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation. It is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus. NAD asks advertisers to substantiate or change their claims in advertisements. As part of a voluntary system of self-regulation, however, its recommendations can be ignored by the offending advertisers. In those instances, NAD refers the offender to federal consumer protection agencies.

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