Centrum Will Drop "Breast Health" and "Colon Health" Claims


CSPI was threatening with a lawsuit.

Pfizer has agreed to drop and amend controversial Centrum health claims following a threat of lawsuit from the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI; Washington, DC).

In April 2011, CSPI sent a letter to Pfizer CEO Ian Read requesting that Centrum amend some of its marketing language, including phrases like “colon health” and “breast health,” which CSPI says “imply, or in some cases explicitly state” that such benefits have been scientifically established.

CSPI explains its opposition to both claims in a press statement:


Centrum relied, in part, on the presence of vitamin D in all of those products to base those claims. In fact, there is limited and inconsistent evidence on vitamin D’s relationship to breast cancer, and inconclusive evidence on vitamin D's relationship to colon cancer.


In a signed letter, Pfizer has now agreed to remove “colon health” and “breast health” claims from all Centrum dietary supplements. Centrum products bearing a “heart health” claim will carry language clarifying that they are “not a replacement for cholesterol-lowering drugs.” Products bearing an “energy” claim will clarify that they support energy through metabolic function.

Pfizer acquired Centrum through its purchase of the pharmaceutical company Wyeth back in 2009.

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