In the wake of recent research by global public health and safety organization NSF International (Ann Arbor, MI) and Harvard Medical School that found harmful stimulants and other illegal dietary ingredients in six previously untested products, NSF has released a newly designed Certified for Sport app and website to support its Certified for Sport testing program and help athletes and consumers avoid potentially harmful ingredients and banned substances in dietary supplements.
The testing program gives the NSF Certified for Sport mark to products that pass lot-by-lot analysis for more than 270 athletic banned substances and that can verify production in a facility subject to biannual inspection for compliance with FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) requirements. Certified products also undergo label claim and formulation verification and testing for harmful levels of contaminants and fraudulent ingredients.
The new app adds to this program with enhanced search capabilities that allow users to browse the library of certified products by name, supplement type and goal, as well as side-by-side product comparisons and a UPC barcode scanner equipped to find Certified for Sport supplements. Users can mark their favorite products and receive up-to-date listings and updates through push notifications.
“We’ve listened to athletes, coaches, trainers, and users of sports nutrition supplements and implemented changes to NSF’s Certified for Sport app to offer a more intuitive experience,” stated Lori Bestervelt, executive vice president, chief technical officer, NSF International, in a press statement. “With enhanced search and display features, users can make smart and effective decisions about which supplements best fit their needs.”
Already, MLB, NHL, and CFL clubs provide and recommend solely those products Certified for Sport. “In a sport where our athletes are subject to stringent drug testing protocols and penalties, it is crucial that our athletes are aware of the risks of the dietary supplement industry and educated on how to make informed decisions about the products they choose to consume,” said Jon Coyles, Major League Baseball’s vice president of drug, health and safety programs. “Through the support of NSF International’s dedicated expert personnel, MLB and MLBPA have developed a system where MLB players and club personnel know that NSF’s Certified for Sport products are the only products they should use to avoid the risk of a positive test result.”
But professional athletes aren’t alone in benefiting. Noted Brian Jordan, the program’s technical manager: “Elite and professional athletes often work with dietitians and trainers to avoid supplements that might result in suspension from competition, but consumers also have very good reason to choose supplements with care.”