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  • All Other Complaints:(877)-5-NO-SCAM
  • Outside NC:919-716-6000
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Dietary Supplements

Before you buy or use any product that promises to cure you or keep you well, check it out carefully. Some products may be a waste of money while others can have dangerous side effects. These products do not have to be tested or approved by any government agency before they are sold to you.

Consider these tips before you decide to purchase a supplement:

  • Ask for proof. Many supplements do not back up their claims with factual proof. Glowing testimonials from people who say that the product changed their lives may be exaggerated or untrue.
  • Check for warnings or recalls. Some supplements may be dangerous and even deadly. Check with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for warnings and recalls on particular supplements and herbal products.
  • Consult your doctor. Supplements may interfere with prescription or over-the-counter medicines you are already taking. Check with your doctor or health care professional to learn about possible drug interactions.
  • “Natural” doesn’t mean safe. Just because a product is “natural” does not mean it is safe. A natural product can cause allergic reactions or be toxic in large doses. Steer clear of products marketed as “miracle cures” for cancer, HIV, arthritis or other serious conditions.
  • Pay with a credit card to improve your chances of being able to get a refund if you aren’t satisfied with the product or if the seller goes out of business.
  • Beware of “free” samples. Some products may promise a free sample.  When you respond to the offer, you’ll be asked to provide your bank account information to pay shipping costs.  But the fine print often says that you’re also agreeing to receive–and pay for–additional shipments of the product.

We Can Help

If you have a complaint about dietary supplements or miracle cures, contact us for help or call toll free within North Carolina 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.

For more about avoiding health care scams watch Diagnosis: Fraud, an excerpt from our consumer protection video Standing Up, Fighting Back.