Food supplements containing synephrine and caffeine withdrawn from sale

6.9.2013

<p>Finnish Food Safety Authority Evira is of the view that food supplements containing synephrine and caffeine can pose a serious health hazard to consumers. They must therefore be withdrawn from the market. Evira has asked municipal food control authorities to contact companies in their own area to initiate withdrawals.</p>

All food supplements containing synephrine and caffeine in a combination are withdrawn from the market, because their safe use cannot be verified through e.g. instructions for use or warning labels.

Synephrine is considered able to cause harmful changes in the cardiac and vascular functions as well as in the central nervous system. Caffeine, on the other hand, increases the effects of synephrine.

Synephrine is an ephedrine-like substance found naturally in small amounts in the peels of fruit of the Citrus family. Extracts made from Citrus aurantium, aka bitter orange, can contain considerable amounts of synephrine.

Synephrine and caffeine are usually found in a combination in fat burning products, for example. The products are sold through many different channels, e.g. on foreign websites. Evira is of the view that consumers should discontinue the use of these products.

Doubts have been voiced about the safety of food supplements containing synephrine and caffeine. Based on the risk assessments they have carried out, Denmark and Sweden have declared food supplements containing synephrine and caffeine in a combination to be unsafe to health and they may therefore not be marketed. Canada has also imposed a restriction to the use of products containing synephrine and caffeine.

Advice to consumers on the use of food supplements: http://www.evira.fi/portal/en/food/manufacture+and+sales/food+supplements/


More information: Päivi Kanerva, Senior Officer, tel. +358 50 434 2203

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