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  5. FDA Issues Warning About Certain Supplements Substituted with Toxic Yellow Oleander (January 2024)
  1. Alerts, Advisories & Safety Information

FDA Issues Warning About Certain Supplements Substituted with Toxic Yellow Oleander (January 2024)

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What’s New

April 4, 2024

The FDA has completed analytical testing of an additional product which has similarly tested positive for yellow oleander. The FDA has received adverse event reports, including one report of a serious adverse event, for Green ELV Nutrition brand Elv Control Herbal Supplement (capsules). The product has been added to the table below.

March 12, 2024

The FDA continues to receive adverse event reports related to the products identified in this Safety Alert. The agency is reminding consumers to avoid these products because they contain toxic yellow oleander and can cause neurologic, gastrointestinal and cardiovascular adverse health effects that may be severe, or even fatal. The agency continues to communicate with firms selling these products. While a few have initiated voluntary recalls (please see the updates made to the table below), the FDA is concerned that products containing toxic yellow oleander remain on the marketplace. The FDA continues to evaluate additional regulatory pathways to remove all identified products from the marketplace.

The complete list of products can be found in the chart below. 

Audience

  • All consumers

What is the problem?

  • FDA analysis has determined that certain dietary supplements labeled as tejocote (Crataegus mexicana) root or Brazil seed are adulterated because they were tested and found to be substituted with yellow oleander (Thevetia peruviana), a poisonous plant native to Mexico and Central America and a toxic substance of concern to public health officials. In other words, the tested products that were labeled as tejocote or Brazil seed are actually toxic yellow oleander.

Tested Products

As of 1/26/2024, the FDA tested as many as 18 samples, representing the products listed below, and found them to contain yellow oleander:

SELLING
FIRM
BRAND WEBSITE
PURCHASED FROM
PRODUCT RECALL
STATUS
World Green Nutrition Inc. / Alipotec

Green ELV Nutrition brand Elv Control Herbal Supplement (capsules)

Amazon.com 

Independent Distributor (Alipotec)

Green ELV Nutrition Herb Control - Herbal Supplement Capsules
Recall Initiated

Alipotec South TX

World Green Nutrition, Inc.

ALIPOTEC ELV Mexican Tejocote Root

alipotecus.com

ELV Alipotec brand Raiz de Tejocote
Recall Initiated

Amazon.com

nwl NUTRA Mexican Tejocote Root

Amazon.com

nwl NUTRA Mexican Tejocote Root
Seller declined to recall, removed listings

Global Mix Inc. 

EVA NUTRITION Mexican Tejocote Root

Eva-nutrition.com

EVA NUTRITION Mexican Tejocote Root
Declined to recall

Sunset Sales + 

ELV King All Natural Tejocote Root

ELV King Tejocote Root Raiz de Tejocote

Amazon.com

ELV King All Natural Tejocote Root
ELV King Tejocote Root Raiz de Tejocote
Declined to recall, removed listings

ALIPOTEC RAIZ DE TEJOCOTE

ALIPOTEC Tejocote Root Dietary Supplement Pieces

alipotectejocote.com

Tejocote Root Dietary Supplement Pieces
FDA unable to contact firm

Natural Supplements, LLC

Science of ALPHA Mexican Tejocote Root

Tejocotemexican.com

Science of ALPHA Mexican Tejocote Root
Declined to recall

H and Natural

H & Natural Tejo Root Raiz de Tejocote

H & Natural Brazil Seed

Handnatural.com

H & Natural Tejo Root Raiz de Tejocote
H & Natural Brazil Seed

Recall Initiated

Backstage CTC Seller

ALIPOTEC Tejocote Root Raiz de Tejocote

Amazon.com

Alipotec Tejocote Root Raiz de Tejocote
Recall Initiated by seller

Amazon.com

ALIPOTEC Tejocote Root Dietary Supplement Pieces

Nutraholics ELV Tejocote Root Dietary Supplement Pieces 

Nutraholics ELV Nutraking Mexican Tejocote Root Supplement Pieces 

ALIPOTEC Tejocote Root

Amazon.com

ELVPOTEC brand Tejocote Root
Alipotec brand Tejocote Root
ELV Nutraholics brand Mexican Tejocote Root
Alipotec brand Tejocote Roo
Declined to recall, removed listings

Global Mix, Inc.

Niwali Raiz de Tejocote

Science of Alpha Mexican Tejocote Root

Etsy.com

Niwali brand Raiz de Tejocote
Science of Alpha brand Mexican Tejocote Root
Declined to recall

Innovacion Natural, LLC

ALIPOTEC Tejocote Root Dietary Supplement Pieces

Innovacionnatural.com

Alipotec brand Tejocote Root
FDA unable to contact firm

Pastor-Villareal, Inc. 

Tejocotex Tejocote Root 

Amazon.com

Tejocotex brand Dierary Supplement
Declined to recall, removed listings

Recommendations for consumers

  • The FDA is advising consumers to stop using and dispose of these products.
  • The FDA advises consumers who have taken any of these products of concern to contact their health care provider immediately.  Even if these products have not been used recently, consumers should still inform their health care provider about which product they took, so that an appropriate evaluation may be conducted.
  • Call 9-1-1 or get emergency medical help right away if you or someone in your care has serious side effects from these products.
  • Contact your healthcare provider if you or someone in your care recently ingested these products and have health concerns.
  • Consumers can also contact the state poison control center.

Summary and Scope of the Problem

In September 2023, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a report of several tejocote root products found to be substituted with toxic yellow oleander. Based on this report, the FDA initiated an investigation to sample and test additional tejocote root products. As of 1/26/2024, the FDA tested as many as 18 samples, representing the products listed above, and found them to contain yellow oleander.

Based on the FDA’s sampling and testing results thus far, the FDA is also concerned that other products marketed as tejocote root (including with other names such as Crataegus mexicana, Raiz de Tejocote, and Mexican Hawthorn) may contain yellow oleander. Consuming yellow oleander can cause severe adverse health effects and be potentially fatal.

Actions

The FDA is actively working with the third-party platforms where these products are sold.

The FDA’s investigation is ongoing, and the FDA will continue to provide information on any further actions as it becomes available. Products may be added to this advisory. The FDA is working to further address the concerns related to these products and monitoring the market for adverse events, product complaints, and other emerging issues.

Who to Contact

Health care professionals, patients and consumers are encouraged to report complaints and cases of exposure and adverse events to the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program.

To report a complaint or adverse event (illness or serious allergic reaction), you can

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