Sunscreen pills are fake says FDA

There are several forms of sunscreens that can be applied over the skin. These include those in the form of sprays, creams or lotions. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned consumers that so-called sunscreen pills are fake and people should avoid such spurious claims.

According to an announcement made by the FDA this Tuesday, warnings letters have been sent to four companies.  These companies are making and marketing dietary supplements that are supposed to protect the people from sun damage. The four products in question include;

  • GliSODin Skin Nutrients’ Advanced Skin Brightening Formula
  • Napa Valley Bioscience’s Sunsafe Rx
  • Pharmacy Direct’s Solaricare and
  • Sunergized LLC’s Sunergetic

The FDA statement says, “There’s no pill or capsule that can replace your sunscreen.” They statement continues that these products when consumed instead of the sunscreen lotions or creams over the skin “are putting people’s health at risk by giving consumers a false sense of security that a dietary supplement could prevent sunburn, reduce early skin aging caused by the sun, or protect from the risks of skin cancer.” The warning letters issued direct the companies to stop all violations that are in association with their products and reverse their marketing and advertising claims.

The spokespersons from the companies have said that they are marketing their products as “supplemental protection” against sun damage and not as a sunscreen. They add that they warn customers against the harmful UV rays of the sun and urge them to use sunscreens along with these supplements.

The FDA in addition is also in support of new research regarding sun protection and the statement says, “Given the recognized public health benefits of sunscreen use, the FDA is committed to finding ways to help bring a wider assortment of safe and effective sunscreen products to the public.”

As of now FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb says companies are, “misleading consumers, and putting people at risk.” “There’s no pill or capsule that can replace your sunscreen,” said Gottlieb. Skin cancer remains one of the common cancers in the United States and one in five Americans are at risk of developing skin cancer during their lifetime. Ultraviolet rays from the sun are responsible for raising the risk of skin cancers.

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.

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