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The FDA Is Spreading Misinformation About Kratom

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On November 14, the FDA issued a public health advisory “related to mounting concerns regarding risks associated with the use of kratom.” Authored by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., who previously worked as a consultant for various pharmaceutical giants, the advisory claims that kratom is a threat to society and has been linked to 36 deaths. And it was all lies.

Following the release of the advisory, Reuters reported that requests for information about the 36 deaths from the agency were met with a suggestion to file a Freedom of Information Act request for the data. Anthony Roberts did just that and shared the FDA’s data — or lack thereof — on Muckrock.

And now, in a recent piece for Inquisitr, Philip Fairbanks reveals that when pressed for evidence, the FDA was unable to back up its outrageous claims.

Roberts broke down the advisory and specifically asked for the “clear data” and “reports” referenced by Gottlieb, including information about those 36 deaths:

“How is the FDA aware of these deaths? Please provide correspondence with any outside agencies or agents, whether governmental, private, or otherwise concerning these deaths. Additionally, please provide all evidence and documentation of these deaths, and further that they were associated with kratom.”

In less than a week, Roberts got his answer from the Center Food Safety and Applied Nutrition:

“Dear Mr. Roberts,

This is in response to your November 17, 2017, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for records pertaining to “ALL EVIDENCE AND DOCUMENTATION RELIED UPON IN THE DRAFTING AND PUBLICATION OF THE AFOREMENTIONED PRESS RELEASE, TO SUPPORT THE FOLLOWING STATEMENTS, MADE BY THE FDA.”

The Center Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) conducted a search and did not locate any records responsive to your request.

Please be advised that your request has been submitted to one or more component offices within FDA. These offices will reply to you directly. CFSAN considers this request closed.”

So FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who once worked to obtain more fentanyl for biopharmaceutical firm Cephalon, which was under investigation at the time for illegally pushing doctors to prescribe the drug for uses from headaches to back pain, complete made up a health scare for a cheap — and unpatentable — herb that has actually helped opiate addicts kick their habit? How very surprising…

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