Product Reviews
Turmeric and Curcumin Supplements and Spices Review
 


HOW PRODUCTS WERE EVALUATED:
How Products Were Selected:

Products tested represent those commonly sold and/or available nationally in the U.S. and Canada. ConsumerLab.com purchased products on the open market through retail stores, on-line retailers, or direct sales. Products were not accepted directly from manufacturers.

Testing Methods:
Curcumin and turmeric products were tested in one or more independent laboratories for the following:
  • Curcuminoid content HPLC (High Performance Liquid Chromatography) (applies only to supplements).
  • Analyses for lead, arsenic and cadmium content by ICP-MS (inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectroscopy) for products containing whole herbs and/or more than 250 mg of minerals per daily dose; Filth in spices as per AOAC method 957.49, 2001 "Light filth in spices and condiments" (applies only to spices).
  • Disintegration time of non-chewable, non-capsule and non-time-release formulations utilizing USP (United States Pharmacopeia) <2040> recommendations entitled "Disintegration and Dissolution of Nutritional Supplements."
Any product not passing initial testing criteria was sent to another independent laboratory to repeat testing for the criterion on which it did not pass.

ConsumerLab.com may modify or use other appropriate test methods if necessary to test special product formulations.

Identities of products were not disclosed to laboratories performing the testing.

Passing Score:*1
To be "Approved" by ConsumerLab.com, a product must meet the following requirements:
  1. Contain 100% and no more than 150% of its claimed and minimum expected curcuminoids. Total curcuminoids were calculated as the sum of curcumin, demethoxycurcumin and bisdemethoxycurcumin. Root/rhizome powders were expected to provide a minimum of 3% (% wt/wt) total curcuminoids and, for extracts, a minimum of 20% total curcuminoids (% wt/wt) USP 36. The minimum was applied if the product did not state an amount of curcuminoids from a turmeric-based ingredient or if the claimed amount was lower than the expected minimum. (Not applicable to spices)
  2. Heavy Metals: Products containing whole herbs and/or more than 250 mg of minerals per daily dose must not exceed the following limits:
    Lead:**
    For Supplements:
    • Products marketed for use by children may not exceed the State of California's Prop 65 limits for lead in dietary supplements of 0.5 mcg per recommended daily serving with an additional allowance of 0.8 mcg if the product contains more than 1,000 mg/day of calcium.
    • Products with a single serving weights of less than 5 grams which are not marketed for use by children, may not exceed the State of California's Prop 65 limits for lead in dietary supplements of 0.5 mcg per recommended daily serving with an additional allowance of 0.4 mcg if containing 250-999 mg/day of any combination of elemental calcium, magnesium and potassium, 0.8 mcg if containing 1000 mg/day of any combination of these minerals. An additional allowance of 0.5 mcg is provided if containing 250-999 mg/day of whole herb (not extract) ingredient or 1.0 mcg for products containing 1000 mg/day or more of whole herb (not extract). However, total lead allowance will not exceed 2 mcg per daily serving. Products with a single serving weights of less than 5 grams which are not marketed for use by children, may not exceed the State of California's Prop 65 limits for lead in dietary supplements of 0.5 mcg per recommended daily serving with an additional allowance of 0.4 mcg if containing 250-999 mg/day of any combination of elemental calcium, magnesium and potassium or 0.8 mcg if containing 1,000 mg/day of any combination of these minerals. An additional allowance of 0.5 mcg is provided if containing 250-999 mg/day of whole herb (not extract) ingredient or 1.0 mcg for products containing 1000 mg/day or more of whole herb (not extract). However, total lead allowance will not exceed 2 mcg.
    • Products with a single serving weight of 5 grams or more which are not marketed for children may not exceed 2.5 mcg per serving nor 4.0 mcg per daily serving.
    For spices: Must not exceed 2 micrograms per gram (ppm).
    Arsenic:
    • For Supplements: Contain less than 10 micrograms of total arsenic and no more than 5 micrograms of inorganic arsenic per daily serving (EPA and state of New Jersey limits - based on 1 liter of water). For spices: Must not exceed 10 micrograms of total arsenic or 5 micrograms of inorganic arsenic per gram (ppm).
    Cadmium**:
    • For Supplements: If marketed for use by children, may not exceed 3.0 micrograms of cadmium per recommended daily serving (based on Canada's limit for a child weighing 75 lbs.). If not marketed for use by children, may not exceed 4.1 micrograms of cadmium per recommended daily serving (based on the State of California's Prop 65 limit). For spices: Must not exceed 3 micrograms per gram (ppm).
  3. If applicable to the product, it must meet recommended USP <2040> parameters of disintegration for dietary supplements (excluding capsule, chewable and time-release products).
  4. Meet FDA labeling requirements.
A "Pass" was based on meeting the above criteria in either the first or second rounds of testing.

* Passing scores allow for specific margins of technical error associated with each analysis. ConsumerLab.com reserves the right to disqualify a product at any time from passing its testing if it considers such product to display unacceptable variation, present a safety risk or to provide misleading or inaccurate label information.

** Based on State of California's Prop 65 lead limit. California requires supplements exceeding this limit to bear a warning label regarding lead.

1 Passing score for elemental lead,cadmium and arsenic in turmeric spices based on a daily serving of 1 gram. Levels of filth found in spices are shown in report. The U.S. government has not yet established a DAL (Defect Action Level) for filth specifically for turmeric spice, but ConsumerLab permits no more than 40 insect fragments per 10 grams.





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