BBB National Programs Archive

NAD Recommends Great HealthWorks Modify, Discontinue Certain Claims for ‘Omega XL,’ Finds Advertiser Can Support Certain Claims

New York, NY – Aug. 6, 2015 – The National Advertising Division has recommended that Great HealthWorks, Inc.,  discontinue or modify certain claims for the company’s Omega XL dietary supplements, including claims that a shellfish oil product, on the market for 30 years,  is a “breakthrough secret.”  NAD also determined that the advertiser provided sufficient support for certain of its advertising claims.

NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation and administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

The claims at issue were challenged by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN). CRN files challenges with NAD in an effort to encourage manufacturers of dietary supplements to provide substantiation for their advertising claims to an objective, third-party for review and evaluation and to assure that claims being promoted to consumers are truthful, not misleading and are substantiated with credible scientific evidence.

In response to NAD’s initial inquiry, the advertiser said it would discontinue challenged testimonials, action that NAD found necessary and appropriate.

Following its review of the evidence in the record, NAD determined that the advertiser provided a reasonable basis for its claims that Omega XL is supported by “over thirty years of clinical research,” with regard to joint pain and “Omega XL is a powerful omega-3 joint health supplement formulated with a patented complex of 30 healthy fatty acids, including DHA and EPA, that have been demonstrated in over 30 years of clinical research to relieve joint pain due to inflammation.”

NAD further determined that the advertiser had provided sufficient support for the following claims:

  • “Get Back What Joint Pain And Inflammation Are Limiting You From Doing Because Omega XL Works.”
  • “Contains up to 22 times more omega-3 free fatty acids than regular fish oil”
  • “Smaller, yet MORE POTENT than regular fish oil”
  • “Safe”
  • Derived from Green Lipped Mussels that are “nurtured, grown and harvested only in the pristine waters of New Zealand, recognized as the cleanest waters on Earth.”

NAD recommended that the advertiser discontinue its claims that:

  • “Omega XL Makes It Easy For You.” 
  • “Omega XL is so potent it requires only a very small dose to be effective”  or modify it to more accurately describe the basis of comparison, a EPA – 18% and DHA – 12% omega-3 fatty acid blend.
  • “No known drug interactions” and “does not interfere with other medications.”
  • “With none of the common side effects associated with standard fish oil, krill and salmon oils.”
  • “Omega XL is pure and contains no levels of harmful toxins or PCBs that are sometimes associated with fish oil products sourced from other parts of the world.”  Nothing in this decision prevents the advertiser from more accurately describing its toxin and PCB levels in its advertising as per its own testing.

Great HealthWorks, in its advertiser’s statement, said the company “differs with NAD’s recommendations to modify or discontinue certain other ancillary claims. Notwithstanding, out of respect for NAD and the self-regulatory process, Great HealthWorks will take NAD’s recommendations into account in future advertising.”