So, get this: Cheerios are a drug.
Of all the food available in this country, those benign little Os are probably the product you’d least expect to get any guff from the Food and Drug Administration. It seems far more likely that the FDA would have a problem with hormone-infused meat or those lethal Entenmann’s “cakes.” But, surprise, the agency has warned General Mills Inc. that the claims on the Cheerios box contain “serious violations of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.” Apparently, the claim that the breakfast cereal can “Lower Your Cholesterol 4% in 6 weeks” makes it a drug, by FDA standards. Therefore, under section 505(a) of the Act [21 U.S.C. § 355 (a)] (obviously), the product “may not be legally marketed in the United States without an approved new drug application.”
What will come of this, presumably, is that General Mills and the FDA will work together to reword the message of the cereal’s heath benefits that appears on the box. If you think that sounds boring, try reading the FDA warning letter: Here It Is.