Tell The FDA That Cherries—And Now Walnuts—Are NOT Illegal Drugs!

April 13, 2010
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Has the FDA lost its mind–again?

In the latest volley of the US Food and Drug Administration’s bizarre war on scientific freedom of speech, the FDA has sent a Warning Letter to the president and CEO of Diamond Foods stating that the firm’s packages of shelled walnuts are “in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.”

Why? As Bill Faloon, co-founder of the Life Extension Foundation, explains in a powerful new investigative article, Diamond Foods, a processor and distributor of nuts, dared to list some of the health benefits of walnuts on its website. The FDA says that the walnuts are being “promoted for conditions that cause them to be drugs because these products are intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease.”

In other words, if you say that a food is healthy and may help protect against heart disease, or ease arthritis or inflammation, your words have magically changed that food into a drug, and that’s illegal.

Life Extension magazine has published no fewer than fifty-seven articles that describe the health benefits of walnuts, each article supported with copious scientific references. Yet the FDA says the walnuts “are not generally recognized as safe and effective,” that the manufacturer’s “unauthorized health claims” have caused the walnuts to become “misbranded,” which makes them subject to government “seizure or injunction”!

What Science Says about WalnutsWalnuts

As Bill Faloon notes (with every statement carefully supported by scientific journals and publications):

  • There is a sharply reduced incidence of heart disease in those who consume walnuts.
  • Walnuts provide a unique blend of polyunsaturated fatty acids (including omega-3s), along with nutrients like gamma tocopherol that have demonstrated heart health benefits.
  • Even moderate consumption of walnuts offers significant reductions in dangerous LDL cholesterol and improvement in the lipoprotein profile.
  • Walnuts protect against coronary artery disease and atherosclerosis because they contain key nutrients like arginine, polyphenols, and omega-3 fatty acids.

The National Library of Medicine database contains no fewer than thirty-five peer-reviewed published papers supporting a claim that ingesting walnuts improves vascular health and may reduce heart attack risk—yet the FDA, the federal agency responsible for protecting the health of the American public, would apparently rather support pharmaceutical manufacturers’ rights. Imagine what would happen to drug profits if everyone ate walnuts for heart health instead of taking expensive medications!

As Bill Faloon says, the verbiage in the FDA’s Warning Letter to the walnut manufacturer “makes it clear that the FDA does not even consider the underlying science when censoring truthful non-misleading health claims.”

Moreover, Faloon continues, “FDA has issued waves of warning letters to companies making foods (pomegranate juice, green tea, and walnuts) that protect against atherosclerosis. The FDA is blatantly demanding that these companies stop informing the public about the scientifically validated health benefits these foods provide.”

These latest FDA outrages are on top of an earlier attack on cherry growers. In that case, the cherry growers cited excellent scientific research from places like Harvard indicating that cherries reduce inflammation and pain. The FDA sent an injunction letter threatening the usual legal penalties—including jail—if this truthful dissemination of scientific research did not stop immediately.

What is the FDA thinking? Why is it blatantly disregarding its own mission of educating the public and promoting health? Why is it acting like an ignorant bully?

Potato Chips . . . as Health Food?

Faloon points to Frito-Lay, a subsidiary of the food and softdrink giant PepsiCo, makers of Pepsi-Cola®, as an example of the strange double standard the FDA seems to be applying. Frito-Lay sells $12 billion a year of products that include Lays® Potato Chips, Doritos®, Tostitos®, Cheetos®, and Fritos®.

You might not associate these mostly deep fried snack foods as being good for you, but as Faloon mentions, the FDA has no problem allowing the Frito-Lay website to state the following:

Frito-Lay snacks start with real farm-grown ingredients. You might be surprised at how much good stuff goes into your favorite snack. Good stuff like potatoes, which naturally contain vitamin C and essential minerals. Or corn, one of the world’s most popular grains, packed with Thiamin, vitamin B6, and Phosphorous—all necessary for healthy bones, teeth, nerves and muscles.

And it’s not just the obvious ingredients. Our all-natural sunflower, corn and soybean oils contain good polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, which help lower total and LDL “bad” cholesterol and maintain HDL “good” cholesterol levels, which can support a healthy heart. Even salt, when eaten in moderation as part of a balanced diet, is essential for the body.

In other words, Frito-Lay can make health claims about its processed fried foods, in opposition to real scientific research, with no repercussions whatsoever, but Diamond can’t make scientifically substantiated claims about shelled walnuts, a health superfood. As Faloon notes:

“For the FDA to allow Frito-Lay to pretend there are heart benefits to ingesting their high-calorie snack products, while censoring the ability of walnut companies to make scientifically substantiated claims, is tantamount to treason against the health of the American public. The simple fact is that walnuts are healthy to eat, while carbohydrates fried in fat are not. FDA permits companies selling disease-promoting foods to deceive the public, while it suppresses the dissemination of peer-reviewed published scientific information.”

Two Things You Can Do

As our regular newsletter readers are aware, on March 23 a bipartisan bill was introduced into the House of Representatives called the Free Speech about Science Act (HR 4913). This landmark legislation, promoted by ANH-USA, protects basic free speech rights, ends censorship of science, and enables the natural health products community to share peer-reviewed scientific findings with the public.

The Free Speech about Science bill has the potential to transform medical practice by educating the public about the real science behind natural health.

For this very reason, the bill will have opposition. It will be opposed by the FDA since it restricts their ability to censor the dissemination of published scientific data. It will be opposed by drug companies fearing competition from natural health approaches based on diet, dietary supplements, and lifestyle.

The public, on the other hand, wants access to credible information they can use to make wise dietary choices. Please don’t let special interests stop this bill. Take action now and ask your Representative to cosponsor the Free Speech About Science Act (HR 4913).

We also have a new Action Alert for you. This one will let you contact Congress to express your outrage about the FDA’s censorship of the scientific evidence supporting the health claims surrounding walnuts (and green tea, and pomegranates, and cherries!). It will also let you tell the FDA what you think about their hypocritical support of deep fried potatoes and corn chips as being “heart-healthy,” while denouncing the scientific evidence of walnuts’ health benefits.

Please take action today and write to the FDA and your members of Congress!

If possible please send in both letters, one supporting the Free Speech About Science Act and the other expressing your opposition to the FDA’s outrageous attack on walnuts (not to mention cherries, green tea, and other natural products). We need to hammer home our message in defense of free speech, common sense, health freedom, and natural health.

199 Responses to “Tell The FDA That Cherries—And Now Walnuts—Are NOT Illegal Drugs!”

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  4. charlotte says:

    Too much “healthy benefits product knowledge might put a kink in killing us with gmo’s.


  5. Lara says:

    If cherries and walnuts are “illegal drugs,” I guess it’s off to jail I go. Piss off, FDA!!


  6. H.C.Norris says:

    The FDA has, quite simply, gone insane. Walnuts and cherries ARE healthy, and they want to sanction the companies who sell them for saying something about their products that are true!

    HCN : (


    • Ann Stockdale says:

      I am sorry to say that the FDA is a dangerous organization as it has a high disregard for peoples health
      and are in bed with food polluters. Their latest offering being an offshoot of aspertame.. which will go into food unlabeled.It is a travesty that the FDA supports untested items which are clearly causing disease.


  7. John says:

    Well, I am going to continue to extoll the health benefits of walnuts. I eat a handful every day without fail. They actually ‘widen’ the arteries to allow the blood to flow easier, especially if you have eaten a fat-saturated meal and the arteries become inflamed and constrict!


  8. The FDA as is true of all politically motivated government agencies need reined in , they are completely out of control and should be shut down or be regressed to their original purpose .


  9. happydude_29 says:

    I think it is a simple fact that it is unconstitutional, as in freedom of sppech, to restrict the dissementation of information gathererd by scientific studies on the positive effects of natural foods and supplements for our health. If these studies are cited for a food, or for a natural occuring source that acts as a drug, it should be the work of the FDA to say if the research is in fact valid. So rtaher than shutting these sources of information down, or restricting a food or supplement based on the fact the FDA has done no research in this area, they should be helping these researchers. How about FDA funding or support for the study of the health benefits of natural foods and supplements? Aren’t they supposed to be protecting our health?
    I know this may sound naive to some, but I know many researchers at the FDA are buying organic foods and vitamins and supplements to protect their health.
    Maybe we can all be on the same team, for health and safety. Big Pharma is necessary, but they can also be part of the solution. Honest living for honest products, natural or Big Pharma.


  10. John says:

    Recently I recieved a thread from, I think it was, HSI that seemed to indicate that the World Health Organization had been instructed to reduce the world populaton by 1.5 billion? Has your FDA anything to do with this? Only asking, because if they are, then, steer me away from their approved ‘products’


    • Anonymous says:

      I totally agree. I am seeing more and more evidence of bio-engineering (chemtrails, new foods/crops popping up all the time — now they want to approve GE salmon?) and it seems that it is all pointing to disease and population reduction. If it doesn’t benefit the biotech companies or Big Ag, the person individual must stop or face consequences of jail or violent action will follow. Just watch Farmageddon. It’s clear that natural health and people waking up as to what’s making them sick (because, of corpse, the same people that profit from feeding you are the ones profiting off of your being ill and if Big Pharma were to cure diseases, they would lose customers!), Farmageddon investigates sting operations to seize people’s property and/or animals in the name of “protecting others.” Fascism, anyone?


  11. Alfiya Aleeva says:

    that is the issue they look at public and think such a pigs, and it is true majority look like pigs moving around supermarket and throw into the trolley all in they way without bothering to read the label, although who says that the label indicate the true fact. All who tries to feed, to treat and look after us they doing it well but not the way you think but other way round. Watching you how quickly you get collapse from their food and drugs.
    TODAY WE ARE LIKE animals in the forest SURVIVES ONLY STRONG ONE. among us strong only those who cares and immune system on the level.


  12. Great post. Now, can I translate your post and post it in my blog quoting you as the author? I would appreciate it. (Please, if yes reply in email)


  13. karlovr says:

    What we really need is all the money government is spending on the war on drugs to be focused on the real war. The FDA, drug and chemical companies that are really killing us. Oh….sorry that will never happen. They are all in bed together stuffing their own greedy pockets. We need to stick together and put all these monsters out of business. Lets keep our country sustainable and help each other through this mess. Our children, grandchildren and generations to follow will thank us. If we do nothing they will hate us or maybe not even be here to think about it. Food for thought. And no pun intended. Now eat your walnuts, cherries, pomegranates and drink your tea. And don’t forget the hallucinogens. We will need those.

    Hemp is the answer. Thank Monsanto and Dow for making that illegal too. Ah the pocket stuffing again. Interesting how they were there too.


  14. Fredric Wiebe says:

    “THE FDA IS PART OF THE DARK FORCES THAT ARE TRYING TO DIMINISH THE POPULATION.” (a comment by a reader of There is no doubt that over-population growth is a major problem facing the world. Over-population underlies the problems of resource consumption, industrial agriculture, greenhouse gas emissions, etc. We are also at or beyond limits to growth, and can anticipate a soon-future that will involve considerable desperation by people attempting to survive, especially in Third World nations enjoying over-population growth and lack of crop foods and clean water to support their burgeoning populations. It is difficult to imagine a soon-future that is not filled with starvation, genocide and regional wars. I estimate that an optimal maximum global population of around 5 billion or less.

    GMO foods may be the answer to this dilemma. Not because GMO foods may be a new green revolution, but because research with various species of mammals being fed diets of GMO foods experience organ failures and almost total infertility within three generations.

    We do need to manage and reduce global population size. In fact, global population has probably already exceeded sustainability, especially considering the rates at which other species are now being forced into extinction, not to mention the perils of global warming that are being caused by increasing needs for fossil fuels and petrofuels and for ecosystem habitats being razed into at least temporary crop lands. We are and will be experiencing oceans rising where some 90% of the world’s population now lives, with many of these people being forced to emigrate.

    The major religions are irresponsible and continue to encourage population over-growth and block attempts at family planning and birth control. Perhaps human extinction is the will of their gods?

    Widespread starvation and pandemics influenza diseases are the most likely effects to soon occur. GMO foods may be the most humane solution.


    • Alfiya Aleeva says:

      you stupid one definitely from MONSANTO writing this rubbish. People dying faster than born, only in the big cities might be rising population, and not because of not enough work out in the villages or poor countries because this Monsanto and their members like Bush following the agenda written hundreds of year before-read more people.
      Have a look at lovely European countries they all can produce great food Bulgaria for instance soil rich in minerals, but Monsanto produces cheap grown in the sponge with chemicals foods and naturally grown food cannot compete with prices,
      IT IS NOT SHORTAGE OF FOOD there is plenty for everyone and forever but it is dictatorship or mafia such Hillary Clinton want dominate the world traveling all around and promising to feed them and she will by GMO food, by food filled with vaccine containing drugs. People unite enter the supermarket and thow all their food out of shelves and ask for decent and healthy alternative.


  15. Juliana Hill says:

    Why do people beleive that a group of people working in a different field should dictate nutrition? Medical doctors are not trained in nutrition. They are not trained in health. They are trained in disease. Remember when medical insurance was called medical? Now it goes by the euphamism:Health Care.

    Does anyone think these days? I am disappointed by Obama. Yes, we can; but we won’t. Our bodies have been sold.


  16. B says:

    with the drug companies and food companies wanting more money, the fda wanting more money, the politicians wanting more money in contributions how is this ever going to end?
    it was bad under Bush 1, and Clinton, got worse under Bush 2, but is now in incomprehensibly disgusting under obama. anybody that thought the health care bill was about health care is truly blind. they want us unhealthy.
    now that psychiatrists wants to diagnose anyone with a temper, bad or negative attitude about something or even distention against authority (can we read “the government here) as a disorder in need of drugs…. can we read between the lines here and see how the government, drug & food companies wants us all so drugged up and unhealthy we won’t have the wherewith-all to complain or know any better than give them all of our money in taxes….its tyranny.


  17. n,saueracker says:

    it is hard to believe the stupidity of the FDA, but unfortunately that is the case


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  19. Joseph Wilson says:

    This is terrifying. Really. I’m not eve sure what to do. Check out Alex Jones and you’ll know what I mean. Theres just so much going on here its overwhelming.


  20. Linda says:

    I will be 70 in a few months….My rules for health are….read the ingredients on the labels, if there is anything there you cannot pronounce, DON’T eat it…..if God made it, it is good, if man made it, don’t eat it……if the FDA recommends it, stay away from it….
    I am on no prescription drugs, have a chemical-free home, including making my own clothes detergent, shampoo; enjoy 2 hours of week of strenuous tap-dancing at the senior center and feel great! Wouldn’t be caught dead at a fast-food place (then again, that’s the ONLY way I would be at a fast-food place).




  22. tammy says:

    the government and the fda crack me up, they think people are so stupid when they are the ones that are stupid!!! I think what im gonna do is go to the dr. and ask for a drug that causes heart attack, stroke or death , sorry , not doin it , they are legal drug dealers and murderers and get away with it . i will never do what they say or want there is a CURE for almost everything dont let them fool you , they will never stop me cause I know how to make every thing I need….!!!!


  23. 1 Week Diet says:

    That is definitely teriffic and very nicely written. Typically I don’t make a comment on post on blogs, But I felt like I should congratulate you on this one. Superb post


  24. Nancy Lipkins says:

    FDA leave our good food alone. Start banning the drugs that kill more people than the food we eat.


  25. Tiffany says:

    So is this like saying “water prevents dehydration”
    or “eating fruit will prevent/treat a Vitamin C deficiancy” you’ll get in trouble for saying so, even if it is true?


  26. [...] the Alliance For Natural Health (ANA) points out, the National Library of Medicine database contains no fewer than thirty-five peer-reviewed [...]


  27. Sondra Braun says:

    Hippocrates (the FATHER of medicine) said “Let your FOOD be your medicine and your MEDICINE be your FOOD”. I think he knew HEALTH comes from FOOD not drugs. Are you going to ban all FOOD even when NUTRITIONISTS tell you they are good for your health. Are you going to ban ORANGES because they CURE SCURVEY?! Are you going to ban MILK because it promotes HEALTHIER BONES and TEETH. Are we to take drugs for breakfast lunch and dinner?! ONLY FOOD can make you HEALTHY!!!!NOT DRUGS!!! Use the brains and common sense GOD gave you and DO NOT BAN WALNUTS,CHERRIES, GREEN TEA or any other FOOD. If you ban ONE FOOD then you must ban them ALL. Now does that make ANY SENSE!!!!!!


  28. Diana says:

    If all the plans of the FDA were actually implemented, I cannot image what kind of a crazy world this
    would be. People’s health would plummet due to too many oil drenched health foods in the form of
    soggy, oil ridden potato chips, they then take a trip to the doctor, who prescribes them a bottle of
    (WALNUTS), with a label saying, take 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening. Foods that grow on
    trees, are so healthy, they are now classified as a drug, so someone can profiteer, from something
    that GOD made. Will they also be raiding citizen properties, if they happen to be growing a walnut
    tree, or some other healthy food, and having them arrested by the authorities for growing drugs.

    This is what all this amounts too, if you follow this train of crazed thinking to it’s logical conclusion,
    and then after walnuts, cherries, green tea, what is next, everything in the produce aisle of the
    supermarket ? ? ? ? Will the FDA be campaigning, to have the produce aisle in the grocery store
    turned into a pharmaceutical aisle, where we produce doctor’s scripts to buy food in bottles,
    and the snack food aisle, where all the harmful sugar ridden, oil drenched items belong, might
    end up being labelled as the (NEW HEALTH FOOD SECTION), of the grocery store.



  29. CLAUDY ASSALIT says:



    • Marsha Clark says:

      Moms friend followed the Gov. so called Heart healthy diet to the letter, took satin drugs and never was obese. She has had numerous heart attacks. Why do they call it the health care industry? To keep people sick! Sick people bring in the big bucks that the Career Politicians require, desire sand covet to remain in power both Repubs. and Dem’s benefit from this game.Their cronies in the pharmaceutical companies, Monsanto, as well as other large Corps. fund their Political machines. Why bite the hand that feeds your voracious machine!Medicine is no longer KNOWN AS the healing arts BUT THE HEALTH CARE INDUSTRY! Keep the people sick! Grow rich remain in power! Power , greed, both political parties can equally share the blame! GOP and Dem’s no fine line betwixt the two. All are career politicians in someones pocket! God is in charge of my Health Care decisions!


  30. Carmen Hudson says:

    I’m afraid this is all very deliberate on the part of the government, folks. Just google a plan called “Codex Alimentarius.” It, and everything it’s linked to, are very hard for sane, sensible, good people to believe. Unfortunately, you can see the hand of such things right here in news like this. Do your research with an open mind. Also try You Tubing a film called Endgame.


    • Curious why you guys have started your own bill that says almost the same thing as Ron Paul’s Bill that is already in Congress and has 2 cosponsors.

      H.R. 3394: Freedom of Health Speech Act

      wouldn’t it make sense to put your force behind a force that is already in motion?


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