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Suit Claims Dannon Overstates Yogurt Health Benefits

Posted Jan 25, 2008 10:26 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A proposed class action lawsuit contends that Dannon overstates the health value of its Activia and DanActive yogurts.

The suit filed in Los Angeles federal court says Dannon’s own studies contradict its ad claims that the yogurts’ probiotics have been clinically proven to regulate digestion and improve the immune system, ABC News reports.

Plaintiff Trish Weiner said she bought Dannon’s probiotic yogurts, but "the only effect that it had on me was that it tasted poorly," the Associated Press reports.

ABC News spoke to Roshini Rajapaksa, an assistant professor of medicine at New York University, who said probiotic bacteria have been shown to help only with specific disorders. "Probiotics is an exciting field, but it is too early to make … general claims like 'regulates your digestive system.' That doesn't mean anything in medical terms,” he said.

But Gregor Reid of the nonprofit Canadian Research and Development Center for Probiotics told AP that a “huge amount” of research supports claims of probiotic yogurt’s benefits.

Dannon says it stands by its claims.

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