from pills It contains vitamins and herbs such as vitamin C and boswellia. The effect of this herb has not yet been proven. “Health Claim Awaiting European Approval” is the disclaimer on the packaging. However, the pills are already sold out and experts are outraged about this. General Practitioner Bernard Linstra thinks this is absurd. “I think it’s bullshit selling these kinds of pills,” he told EditieNL.
Linestra has been a general practitioner for six years and is seeing a shift in people who want to buy into their unhealthy lifestyle with pills. “I don’t think it’s a good idea to encourage this. Because you’re selling something that hasn’t been proven effective at all, and you’re also coming up with the idea: I can buy air pollution pills, so I don’t ‘have to live a healthy life anymore.'”
However, these health products can be legally sold with claim. “You can make claims on health products if they are approved by the European Commission,” says Janine Galgaard of the Inspection Council.
HEMA Air Pollution Control Pills contain herbs such as nettle leaf, fish collagen extract and boswellia. “For certain herbs, such as boswellia, the claims have not yet been evaluated. They are still pending for approval. In that case, you can put the effect of the product on the packaging, provided you put the disclaimer on hold on it. So: pending European approval.”
But GP Leenstra thinks the company is going too far with this: “What HEMA does in fact is push the limits, just to be able to make money. I think you also have some personal responsibility and you have to protect the population. Health, then you have to be clean.” This is to win public money and deceive people.”
He believes that consumers are being misled. “You have the impression that you are improving your health, but this has not been proven. You think: I am healthy, so I don’t have to modify my lifestyle. If this continues, what are we going to get? Pills or sports pills? We shouldn’t want that. You have to look. Whether it works, then sell it.”
However, according to Galgaard of the Inspection Council, HEMA does nothing wrong. “What HEMA does not prohibit. Legally permissible.”
HEMA says in reply:
“We don’t think it’s misleading, because we’ve made clear what the disclaimer is and that the claim it contains now applies to vitamin C. And we’re still waiting for the boswellia effect.”
“The sales figures show that it is in great demand. Now the product is being pretended to be nonsense, while in Europe it is being seriously considered. We are not selling anything crazy.”
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