The European Commission has decided to harmonise regulations for all of Europe for "food supplements", those products that are consumed because of their content: substances important to our health. These are products that supply our organism with vitamins, minerals, herbs, fatty acids, enzymes, aminoacids and other healthy substances, which we are using in an effort to seek protection from various factors in the environment that are damaging to our health.
Even though the specific proposal which we are talking about is only dealing with two categories of substances - vitamins and minerals - we know that there already is one other directive being discussed, which is slated to turn many herbs that today are sold in herb shops, into "traditional medicines" needing pharmaceutical registration. We also know that after vitamins and minerals, the European Commission intends to tackle other substances, such as aminoacids, fatty acids and other extracts used in supplements.
What is being proposed for these vitamin and mineral supplements?
To tell the truth, it is very difficult to say, because the proposal itself is extremely vague. The directive which is being discussed is proposing to leave important decisions to the discretionary administrative action of the European Commission. These are decisions important to consumers, such as the approval of ingredients and even the setting of dosage limits. We are, in fact, being sold new regulations that present themselves much like "a pork in a barrel".
What we can already say about the proposed directive on food supplements is that a mania to control every last detail seems to have emerged. The restrictive rules that are being proposed will protect a particular interest, that of the pharmaceutical multinationals.
- Why limit the dosages of substances that have never shown serious problems of "overdosing"?
- Why institute controls in the same way as those existing for pharmaceutical products on the ingredients of food supplements?
- Why prohibit many of the products that are on the market today and have never given particular problems?
Maybe because natural products and especially supplements are in direct competition with synthetic pharmaceuticals? Maybe too many people prefer to prevent illness by nutritional means rather than having to go see a doctor after falling ill? That may well be it! It explains the controls wanted by the Eu Commission. They are protecting their friends of the multinationals, those that produce synthetic "medicines", genetically modified organisms, aspartame and fluoride.
The people want alternative medicine?
Well, we already see a gradual restriction of the means at the disposal of nutritionists, naturopaths and medical doctors who use natural products. The trick is to "get those products registered as medicines", after which they will quietly disappear from the market.
The difficult search for a compromise
At the end of May this year, the health authorities of the Eu governments examined and discussed a proposal of the European Commission with regard to food supplements. The proposal, already restrictive in nature, was not accepted by some countries. The rappresentatives from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Greece and Spain, in their mistaken belief that natural products have no role to play in the maintenance of health, asked for even stricter limits to the availability of food supplements than those proposed by the Commission.
In the absence of agreement, the proposal was put aside, but not for long. In fact, Sweden and Belgium got to work, proposing compromise solutions in one-to-one contacts with the other countries. After the summer holidays, a further European meeting was held on 5 September: still no agreement. Four countries do not believe that food supplements have any "physiological effects" and they are therefore asking to eliminate reference to such an effect from the proposed definition in article 2. The countries concerned are Denmark, Greece, Spain and Belgium. Three of these countries are also contrary to the prospectives of dosage restrictions based on the complete safety of these products. They seek to reduce dosages, lowering them down to the range of the recommended minimum levels of assumption, the socalled RDA's.
With all this back and forth, all that horse trading between the bureaucrats of various nations, where is the freedom of choice of those who wish to utilize these products? How are they going to make sure that naturopaths find the products that are necessary for their profession? It seems that these "authorities" are forgetting that they are about to interfere in a very delicate equilibrium between "official" medicine and various alternatives, and that our personal preferences, and indeed our health to them are of little or no importance.
Where do those compromises take us?
We will not be able to find health products unless we have a medical prescription. It is of course clear that medical doctors, at least the "normal" ones, do not prescribe anything that has not been suggested to them by socalled "scientific informers", the promoters of medical drugs on the payrolls of the pharmaceutical companies. Therefore, with some natural products being eliminated from the market and medical doctors who are pushing more profitable drugs off on an unsuspecting public, alternative ways to take care of our health will vanish. At least that seems to be the great vision of the multinationals.
What are we asking?
We are demanding the free availability of natural health products, such as is already the case in already some EU countries such as the Netherlands and the UK, apart from the United States.
Defend your freedom to choose!
First of all, sign our petition for freedom of choice. La Leva di Archimede has on it's website a petition, addressed to legislators and administrators, asking them to respect our freedom of choice with regard to natural and nutritional health products.
This petition, which was signed by over twenty-four thousand persons from both Europe and from all over the world, may be signed also by people who do not have an internet connection. There are forms available to print out (right on the page where you sign the petition) and the names may be inserted later by who collected the signatures.
Second action: speak with your alternative practitioner, your doctor who uses and recommends natural products, your health food store or herb shop owner, about the legislative activities of the European Commission. Make them understand that, unless a miracle or our determined hard work change the course of events, some products which are today considered indispensable, may not be available any longer.
As a third "to do": involve your immediate acquaintances, anyone you know who is in politics, and anyone who is working in the health professions. Talk with them and make them understand how important it is for you that everyone should have the freedom to choose what nutrients to swallow and in what dosage they think is optimum for them.
Fourth and last: write to your legislators, to protest against the gradual reduction of the choices at your disposal, to take care of your own health using natural and nutritional products. You can contact La Leva to obtain instructions and addresses.
Globalize our supplements? No, thank you!
Not only is the European Commission preparing a directive to limit the availability of food supplements: as the globalizers want to be sure of the results, they are discussing that very same issue in the meeting of "Codex Alimentarius", which is an agency of the United Nations, with the world's governments as members. Codex is elaborating and publishing rules and standards about foods, and it is heavily influenced by the multinationals in the chemical/pharmaceutical camp.
The Codex delegates will meet in Berlin in November this year for deliberations of the Codex committee on Nutrition on Special Dietary Foods. They will attempt to introduce an international standard on food supplements proposed some years ago by the German delegation to Codex, which is destined to lower permitted dosages of vitamins and minerals and to closely control ingredients of natural products, just like the European Commission is attempting to do.
Stop the bastards!
Unless people start protesting heavily, these bureaucrats will just continue on their merry way, muzzling the natural health alternatives, on the orders of and for the benefit of the chemical pharmaceutical multinationals which have lately been losing many of their customers because of toxic "side effects" of the products they propose.
You can find more information on Codex Alimentarius and a comment on their proposal on our site at:
Please also visit the pages of Dr. Rath, a medical doctor and researcher who has worked for a long time with Nobel prize winner Linus Pauling, and who discovered that certain natural anti-oxidant substances can protect against cardiovascular disease. Rath has provided a letter which can be sent from your computer (using a program that can be downloaded) to the different Codex delegates all over the world, as well as to politicians and legislators.
The medical discoveries of Dr. Rath
Information about Codex Alimentarius and a letter of protest with a program needed to send it to all Codex delegates: