The European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA’s) Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA Panel) has issued two guidance documents establishing “the scientific requirements for the substantiation of health claims related to functions of the nervous system, including psychological functions, and those related to physical performance.” In particular, the new guidance documents address “which claimed effects are considered to be beneficial physiological effects, and which studies/outcome measures are appropriate for the substantiation of function claims and disease risk reduction claims.” They are the final installments in a series of documents covering health claims related to gut and immune function; antioxidants and cardiovascular health; weight management; and bone, joint and oral health.  

According to EFSA, the NDA Panel has also finished its further assessment of general function health claims, approving two additional claims that member states substantiated with supplemental data: (i) prunes and normal bowel function, and (ii) alpha-cyclodextrin and a lower rise in blood pressure after meals. The European Commission has already adopted 222 general function claims since EFSA first published 341 opinions on 2,758 applications in June 2011. The agency will continue to review new applications under the individual authorization procedure. See EFSA News Story, August 7, 2012.