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Posted at 7:00 AM ET, 12/31/2010

Is that right? Dannon yogurts fight flu, cold and irregularity?

By Jennifer LaRue Huget

We've all seen those ads for Dannon's Activia yogurt and DanActive dairy drink, right? The ones with the funky graphics that show how the probiotics on those products go about relieving irregularlity and fending off flu and colds?

Those ads -- at least, in their current forms -- will soon be things of the past.



The Federal Trade Commission and a number of state regulatory agencies have read Dannon the riot act, saying it can't make the cold and flu claims on DanActive's behalf unless it gets them approved by the FDA. And the Activia claims have to state that it takes three daily servings, not just one, to achieve the stated results.

The federal agency spelled out exactly what Dannon can and cannot do in promoting its products' health benefits. Dannon has agreed to comply and will pay a $21-million settlement.

This is hardly the first time Dannon's been taken to task for wrongly touting health benefits. I wish they'd knock it off.

Which is not to say that the probiotics -- healthful bacteria -- in Dannon and other yogurts may not in fact do your body some good. Here's something I wrote a while back helping to sort all that out. Just don't count on yogurt to keep you healthy or your digestive tract purring along.

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | December 31, 2010; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Is That Right?, Nutrition and Fitness, diarrhea, probiotics  
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Comments

gee what a surprise - a com.post blogger siding with fed bureaucrats vs. a private company in decreeing the latter is 'wrongly' touting health benefits.

Posted by: robeste | January 2, 2011 10:31 AM | Report abuse

gee what a surprise - a com.post blogger siding with fed bureaucrats vs. a private company in decreeing the latter is 'wrongly' touting health benefits.

Posted by: robeste | January 2, 2011 10:32 AM | Report abuse

gee what a surprise - a com.post blogger siding with fed bureaucrats vs. a private company in decreeing the latter is 'wrongly' touting health benefits.

Posted by: robeste | January 2, 2011 10:33 AM | Report abuse

gee what a surprise - a com.post blogger siding with fed bureaucrats vs. a private company in decreeing the latter is 'wrongly' touting health benefits.

Posted by: robeste | January 2, 2011 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Dear robeste,

You forgot the word "liberal" in your diatribe, or is that to be implied?

Gee, what a surprise--a blogger trying to shout down common sense protection of the public by smearing the Washington Post with silly word games ("com.post" -- cute, did Limbaugh come up with that?).

What a ridiculous conceit! Laws that tell us that claims made of food and medicine HAVE to be proven scientifically (I know I used a dirty word there--science is surely anathema to your "gut" reactions).

Why don't we throw out all the laws and put thalidomide back on the market? Why don't we again make opiates available for prescription? Why don't we go back to the unregulated "good old days" where mercury and arsenic were used as treatments for various diseases?

By the way, who do you think was responsible for a very large number of the laws protecting the consumer?

Bet it was a smirking, evil, atheist commie liberal.

Posted by: RickyGibson | January 2, 2011 12:20 PM | Report abuse

So what does the FDA have to say about so-called "medical" marijuana? They're awfully busy busting up nutritional claims for pomegranate juice and yogurt, but apparently won't touch the medical claims being made for an illegal product that doesn't even have dosage, potency or prescription standards. Whatever you think of medical marijuana or the benefits of yogurt, the FDA's disparate treatment makes no "consumer protection" sense.

Posted by: montgrl | January 2, 2011 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I don't use Dannon products because they could not guarantee that they did not use Bovine hormones to boost milk production in their cows. If a hormone can force a cow to produce more milk, it is probably not good for breast health in humans. Not for me.

Posted by: Dipsy1 | January 2, 2011 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Dear montgrl,

You need to learn how to do a Google Search.

New York Times, April 2006: The FDA states that "'no sound scientific studies' supported the medical use of marijuana".

Actually, they do say something else. . . beginning with the phrase, "You have the right to remain silent. . ."

Posted by: RickyGibson | January 2, 2011 8:00 PM | Report abuse

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