Evaluating Health claims about plant based food supplements
The EU regulation No 1924/2006 concerning the nutrition and health claims for food requires a scientific substantiation of the highest quality standard in order to authorize health claims and to ensure the consumer protection. Regarding the health claim related to botanicals, the EFSA evaluation has been currently stopped and a decision is being waited on how to scientifically assess the substantiation of such claims (pending claims).
Synadiet has recently published a graded approach for evaluating health claims about plant based food supplements in Nutrients. It has developed a model based on graded claims, where the level of proof provided is evaluated by a standardized methodology and where traditions of using plant-based products are taken into account. Claims are graded in three levels:
- Grade C: “ traditionally used for” based on authoritative reference texts, dated a minimum of 25 years ago.
- Grade B: “… can contribute to “ based on convergent body of evidence (see the details on the publication).
- Grade A: “ … decreases, relieves or improves” based on two convergent studies (see the details on the publication).
The publication also describes the type of evidence needed to substantiate the claims and provides general guidelines for methodologies on research and evaluation of traditional medecines.
For more details on this graded approach, read the publication.