Snake oil. I get it…the frustration that Dr. Oz feels about the scam artists who steal and use his likeness to promote a product. It happened to me. I got a call from another dietitian who wanted to ask me about this product I was supposedly endorsing. I said..”What are you taking about? I’m not promoting that product.” Well, guess what? Some unscrupulous company had copied my bio and likeness from my website and made me the nutrition expert on their site. I had to send a legal cease and desist letter and incur the expense for this scam.
At the same time, are ALL of those weight loss products hyped on the Dr. OZ show and all over the Internet really miracles or snake oil? I got an email asking me if raspberry ketones work for weight loss. With over 100 pounds to lose she thought this might be her miracle. Whoa…hold on tight to your money. No! Raspberry ketones are not the miracle. Supposedly a chemical in raspberries known as Rubus ideas stimulates a brain chemical which in turn causes fat cells to break down.
Unfortunately this is hype versus reality. They don’t work but they do provide empty promises giving you hope while taking your hard earned money. And for many people, the placebo effect is powerful. You believe something works so it does. Generally, supplement packages suggest a cut in portion size and calories. I think this change is why you lose weight.
Dr. Oz is one of America’s most famous doctors but the vast majority of weight loss information presented on this show is bogus pseudo science spoon fed to you in the form of encouragement and hope.
A recent article on the DailyBeast talks about Senator Claire McCaskill-who chairs the Senate’s Consumer Protection area -having Dr. Oz testify on consumer scams. With the goal of preventing deceptive advertising and protecting you, the Senator was on Dr. Oz about why the show promotes all types of unproven, scientifically shallow, over-hyped products that do nothing.
I’ve worked in media for a long time and understand the bottom line: eyeballs or ears returning day after day. Really, how long can you talk about eating differently and exercising…the hard reality of what it takes to lose weight? It’s just not sexy. Enter magic bullets of all types that just keep coming and promising the moon and the stars. Like raspberry ketones, green coffee extract, and garcinia cambogia, the next new miracle product will keep coming until someone says enough of the bogus bull. Show me the science before I hand you a buck.
Did your Mom tell you this too? If something sounds too good to be true, it’s probably not. Believe her. Then look for blogs and other information written by registered dietitian nutritionists…the experts in nutrition. Remember anyone can use the term ‘nutritionist’. You can buy a mail order nutrition degree for your cat or dog this weekend so be sure and look at their credentials…RD or RDN.
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