The FDA sent a warning letter to Diamond Foods telling them that the claims they were making for their walnuts place the walnuts into the category of "drug" because FDA defines "drug" as something intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease.
FDA gave examples of Diamond's claims:
"Studies indicate that the omega-3 fatty acids found in walnuts may help lower cholesterol; protect against heart disease, stroke and some cancers; ease arthritis and other inflammatory diseases; and even fight depression and other mental illnesses."I think Diamond started promoting walnuts as drugs when they made disease claims. I mean, for Diamond to state or even imply that their shelled walnuts can inhibit tumor growth is powerful stuff. Before the existence of the FDA, people sold lung tonics and cough cures and other dubious remedies with similar claims.
"[O]mega-3 fatty acids inhibit the tumor growth that is promoted by the acids found in other fats ... "
"[I]n treating major depression, for example, omega-3s seem to work by making it easier for brain cell receptors to process mood-related signals from neighboring neurons."
"The omega-3s found in fish oil are thought to be responsible for the significantly lower incidence of breast cancer in Japanese women as compared to women in the United States."
I just came from their site, www.diamondnuts.com. It looks like they complied.
The Life Extension Foundation says this action by the FDA "resembles an out-of-control police state where tyranny reins over rationality."
I guess there are two sides to every story.
Thank you LB for the link.