Originally published July 2, 2015
What follows in part, are the Young Living tips for using structure-function claims appropriately. The yellow highlights are my editorial emphasis. I have nothing much to add here other than a comment that since there is no legitimate scientific proof supporting the daily ingestion of lemon essential oil for ANY purpose, the industry should start to see that dangerous advice fade away if salespeople follow these tips.
The FDA does not allow any structure-function claims for products unless those products are sold under the FDA DSHEA food labeling laws, and labeled as dietary supplements.
So the same essential oil can be in two bottles, sold side by side, one labeled as a Dietary Supplement with instructions for ingestion and claims the essential oil will impact the structure or function of the body, and as long as there is science to support that claim – it is legal.
The same essential oil – even with an equal or greater body of science, or supported by historic use within the field of aromatherapy or herbal medicine – cannot be sold with the same claims, if the bottle is not marketed as a dietary supplement. And considering that ingestion is the more hazardous application in most cases, and should really only be undertaken under the direct supervision of someone trained in aromatic medicine – the FDA regulations do not make much sense. But, they are what they are and until they are changed, companies are required to follow them.
Claims that essential oils will treat, cure or prevent illness is illegal for essential oils whether the product is sold as a dietary supplement or not. Examples of medical conditions include colds, flu, acne, rash, insomnia, obesity, and pain.