Simply Slim – ASA breach ruling

"The complainant submitted that no changes have been made to the misleading / false claims on the Simply Slim website, www.simplyslim.co.za, and the respondent clearly has no intention of desisting from duping consumers, because roadside banners between Johannesburg and Pretoria are also still in use, Therefore only the severest level of sanctions may have some effect."

Read the rest

ASA Ruling: Procydin

Procydin, in an advertisement claimed, inter alia, that the product is “A natural supplement for heart illness, arthritis, hypertension and circulatory problems”, and “powerful antioxidant”, which delivers the same benefits of other antioxidants. These include, inter alia, the following, according to the advertisement: 
  • “They stimulate blood circulation, also to the capillaries, which is beneficial to diabetics”;
  • “They help to fight inflammation, benefitting people suffering from arthritis”;
  • “They protect against heart disease and can help to normalize blood pressure and cholesterol levels”;
  • “They can improve the efficacy of antiretroviral treatment”.

There are also claims that “Researches in Norway have found that AIDS patients who supplemented their diet with antioxidants, obtained better results with antiretroviral treatment”, along with other claims of this nature.

In essence, the complainant submitted that the advertisement creates the impression that all the benefits listed can equally be attributed to the respondent’s product. these claims, however, are … Read the rest

Is an “anti-aging pill” possible?

Posted 18 April 2011

A principle in scientific research and science writing is to always go back to the primary source documents as far as possible. Ideally one would want to be able to double-check actual data from studies — but most of the time we have to be content with the published versions of the research. Here’s an example of how not going back to the original publication, and relying on a secondary source (a university newspaper) led to a mistake which has then been used in making false claims for a product.

Solal have been marketing an “anti-aging pill” which they claim/infer, among other, can slow down human ageing and extend the human lifespan.

Their website — which is no longer accessible since this blog was first published  (http://www.solaltech.com/antiaging.htm)  showed the graphic above which asks “Is an anti-aging pill possible?” Text that implies this is factual … Read the rest

Patients before paradigms – Debunking the paradigm defence

This excellent article written by Marcus Low has been posted at Quack down!.

He writes, among other:

" It is often argued that complementary or alternative medicines should not be judged or regulated according to the same criteria as pharmaceutical medicines. The argument is logically flawed and it also puts the interests of health providers ahead of patients." 

" The logical flaw in the paradigm defence is that it confuses the treatment paradigm with the outcome. There may be many healing paradigms worth exploring. But when it comes to testing and regulation we are interested in whether it works, not the paradigm." 

". . .  irrespective of the ‘paradigm’, medicines are all judged equally in terms of the evidence of efficacy and safety."

Read the full article at: http://www .quackdown.inf o/article/patients-paradigms/

 

Read the rest

Distorting Evidence: A South African Example

One of the cardinal sins of any researcher is to tamper with their data to make them ‘fit’ the results they were wanting. A recent international example is that of Dr Andrew Wakefield, who published articles in the reputable Journal ‘The Lancet’, which apparently showed a causal link between the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine and autism. Fortunately his deception was uncovered; he was struck off the roll of the General Medical Council in the UK; and The Lancet retracted his articles. The tragedy is that many people did not have their children vaccinated because of this deception, and a number of these unvaccinated children went on to develop measles and some even died. Others may have to cope with the consequences for years to come.

Hot on the heels of the sin of such deceptive fraud must surely be when other persons’ legitimate research results are misrepresented to promote a … Read the rest

A dozen facts about Solal and their “critics”

Following a posting on Quackdown! (How Solal Technologies uses legal threats to stifle legitimate criticism), Harris Steinman writes:

Brent Murphy and Colin Levin, directors of Solal, have written a vitriolic response to the article How Solal Technologies uses legal threats to squash criticism written by Marcus Low. In Solal’s response many misleading or simply incorrect statements are made that I initially was going to ignore, but I realise that this may inadvertently result in readers who do not follow my blog, CamCheck, accepting Solal’s response as having validity.

In responding, some very unpleasant truths have to be revealed. These are the facts:

Read the response at Quackdown! – A dozen facts about Solal and their "critics"

Read the rest

Mediese kenners waarsku teen Holford

A cutting article by Johannes de Villiers published in the Rapport of 03 April 2011 

This article relates to the following postings on Quackdown!

Why is Dis-Chem promoting Patrick Holford?
http://quackdown.info/article/why-dis-chem-promoting-patrick-holford/

Dis-Chem responds to open letter
http://quackdown.info/article/dis-chem-responds-open-letter/

Mediese kenners waarsku teen Holford

http://www.rapport.co.za/Suid-Afrika/Nuus/Mediese -kenners-waarsku-teen-Holford-20110402

Die wêreldberoemde dieetghoeroe Patrick Holford saai verwarring in Suid-Afrika deur mense se vertroue in kliniese medisyne te ondermyn, sê plaaslike medici. 

Vooraanstaande mediese kenners is besorg oor die gewilde skrywer se neiging om vitamienpille en spesiale diëte pleks van medisyne vir ernstige siektetoestande aan te beveel. 

Holford, wat derduisende boeke en vitamienpille in Suid-Afrika verkoop, kom toenemend onder skoot deur plaaslike gesondheidskenners wat meen sy uitsprake oor depressie, kanker en MIV/vigs is ongegrond en onwetenskaplik. 

Read the rest