Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

Adulterated evidence of supplement adulteration

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
Get posts in your inbox:
Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

Critics of the supplements industry — Big Suppla — believe that supplements often do not contain what they claim to contain. The most popular citation to support that belief has come under fire. Jonathan Jarry regarding the allegations:

…the lead researcher’s data seem to be missing, fraudulent or plagiarized. The paper was widely cited and it became one of those easy-to-grab bits of evidence that skeptics love to pull out.

I avoided citing this famous paper … but only because I somehow missed it. If I had known about it, I probably would have cited it! The last time I looked at supplement adulteration/contamination, I did think that the data was a bit thin. I don’t really doubt that some supplements are adulterated and contaminated, but it may not be as common and serious a problem as skeptics would “like” to believe.

For the record (and unsurprisingly), the researcher accused of cooking the data has denied all wrongdoing.

PainSci Member Login » Submit your email to unlock member content. If you can’t remember/access your registration email, please contact me. ~ Paul Ingraham, PainSci Publisher