NAD Findings Support the Claim that Benefiber Healthy Balance “Helps Relieve Occasional Constipation and Abdominal Discomfort Without Causing Diarrhea”

For Immediate Release 

Contact: Abby Hills, Director of Communications, 301.412.7769 / ahills@bbbnp.org 

 

New York, NY – April 30, 2020 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) determined that GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare (GSKCH) provided a reasonable basis for its claim that Benefiber Healthy Balance “helps relieve occasional constipation and abdominal discomfort without causing diarrhea.” The claim, which appeared on product packaging for Benefiber Healthy Balance, was challenged by the Procter & Gamble Company (P&G), maker of competing dietary supplement and laxative product, Metamucil. 

 

NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation and is a division of the BBB National Programs’ self-regulatory and dispute resolution programs. 

 

NAD noted that both parties market fiber supplement products that are intended to help consumers reach their recommended daily value of fiber and provide a variety of health benefits related to fiber intake. The advertiser provided several studies to show that Benefiber Healthy Balance, made from a fermentable fiber called partially hydrolyzed guar gum (“PHGG”), provides the particular claimed benefits. Generally, claims related to human health benefits are best supported by randomized, placebo-controlled studies on human beings that reach statistical significance and also yield clinically meaningful results. When a product is well-studied, like PHGG, NAD looks to the totality of the relevant evidence and studies to determine if the claim is supported. Thus, NAD assessed whether the evidence provided by the advertiser is sufficiently competent and reliable and supports the claim that taking Benefiber Healthy Balance “helps relieve occasional constipation and abdominal discomfort without causing diarrhea.”  

 

In support of its claim, which touts three health benefits for consumers who take Benefiber Healthy Balance, the advertiser relied on the results of 15 studies on PHGG and provided NAD with a summary describing how these results support the challenged claim. GSKCH also submitted to NAD two expert declarations explaining the scientific justification of the claim and responding to the challenger’s evidence.  

 

Looking to the totality of the evidence in the record, NAD determined that the advertiser has a reasonable basis for its claims that taking Benefiber Healthy Balance relieves occasional constipation, relieves abdominal discomfort and does not cause diarrhea. NAD found that the claims were supported by the results of blinded, placebo-controlled studies and confirmed by the results of other studies in the record. Further, NAD concluded that the evidence provided by the challenger, which consisted of a summary of 14 studies on PHGG and an expert declaration critiquing the advertiser’s evidence, was not more reliable than that put forth by GSKCH. 

 

Therefore, NAD determined that the advertiser provided a reasonable basis for its claim that Benefiber Healthy Balance “helps relieve occasional constipation and abdominal discomfort without causing diarrhea.” 

 

In its advertiser’s statement, GSKCH stated that “consistent with this decision, GSKCH will continue to promote Benefiber Healthy Balance’s ability to relieve occasional constipation and abdominal discomfort without causing diarrhea. GSKCH appreciates the opportunity to participate in the self-regulatory process and thanks NAD for its careful review of the evidence supporting its claims.” 

 

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About the National Advertising Division: National Advertising Division (NAD), a division of BBB National Programs, provides independent self-regulation overseeing the truthfulness of advertising across the U.S. NAD reviews national advertising in all media and its decisions set consistent standards for truth and accuracy.  

 

About BBB National Programs: BBB National Programs fosters trust, innovation, and competition in the marketplace through the development and delivery of cost-effective, third-party self-regulation, dispute resolution and other programs. BBB National Programs is the home of industry self-regulatory and dispute resolution programs designed to resolve business issues and advance shared objectives by responding to marketplace concerns to create a better customer experience. To learn more about industry self-regulation, please visit: BBBNP.org

 

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