What those vitamin label terms actually mean

Posted: 3:16 PM, Jul 18, 2016
Updated: 2016-07-18 17:51:18-04

Experts say more than half of American's take some sort of supplement but deciphering those definitions can be challenging.

Experts say label terms like organic, natural, and other claims can be puzzling.

"It makes it difficult for them to determine what they need to take or what product they should purchase because they really don't know what those terms mean," says Sonya Angelone, from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 

When you see "organic" on a label, it's actually a certification that means a product meets tough federal requirements.

"Organic means that a product is made without the use of synthetic fertilizers or pesticides that it doesn't have ionic radiation as part of the process and basically that it doesn't have any genetically modified organisms," says Angelone.

A survey found consumer confusion between the terms "organic" and "natural".

The FDA is deciding if it will create an "official definition" for "natural" but for now it considers it to mean the product contains nothing artificial or synthetic.

Bottom line, if the FDA doesn't have a definition for something, they still have rules. The agency says "the FDA does not approve supplement labels before they are put on the market, but all labels are required to be truthful and misleading."

For more information, you can visit the USDA website and the FDA website.