Fat substitute declared safe

BMJ 1998; 316 doi: (Published 27 June 1998) Cite this as: BMJ 1998;316:1926
  1. Deborah Josefson
  1. San Francisco

    A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel has overwhelmingly reaffirmed the safety of the fat substitute Olestra (olean).

    Olestra was recently attacked as a health hazard by a consumer group, the Center for Science in the Public Interest. The group contended that Olestra caused severe gastrointestinal disturbance and induced vitamin deficiencies that could lead to cancer. The consumer group and Dr Walter Willet of Harvard University's School of Public Health urged the FDA to remove Olestra from the market, citing 8000 reports of gastrointestinal distress reported by users of the product.

    Olestra, a non-absorbable synthetic …

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