Experts dubious about copper-bedding claims

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If you shop for a new mattress in 2017, you might see claims about the health benefits of copper to help with everything from joint pain to blood circulation. Experts whom we interviewed say you should think twice before you spend the extra money on what might be a bummer bedtime story.

There is “no reason to suspect that [copper] has any important clinical effects,” says Dr. Stuart Spitalnic, who is an emergency-room doctor who has knowledge on the subject. “No one should be buying anything based on what’s known now.”

Adam Estelle, who is a project engineer at Copper Development Association, which represents copper producers and fabricators, says some manufacturers try to “extrapolate” the benefits of copper to support their own claims when, in fact, not enough studies back up claims that copper bedding provides health benefits.

Estelle says manufacturers must be registered with Environmental Protection Agency to make claims about antimicrobial qualities or any other claims pertaining to human health, which, he adds, require a high level of supporting evidence. He says he isn’t aware of any textiles that passed that strict of a scrutiny.