FDA criticizes Cheerios maker for health claims

May 12, 2009 The Food and Drug Administration says General Mills makes unauthorized claims about the heart-related benefits of eating cheerios.

The FDA sent the company a warning letter, saying that the language on its boxes inappropriately suggests that cheerios are designed to prevent or treat heart disease.

The box has wording that claims consumers can lower their cholesterol by 4 percent in 6 weeks.

Regulators say only FDA approved drugs are allowed to make claims about the specific degree of risk reduction.

General Mills says the health claims for cheerios have been approved for 12 years and the FDA's complaints deal only with the language on boxes of Cheerios.

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